Cellphones have come an incredibly long way from the gigantic Motorola and Nokia doorstops of yore to the sleek iPhone and Lumia handsets today.
Whether it's the ability to check your email, IM, record full HD clips or conduct a video chat with someone 8000 kilometres away, there's no denying that today's handsets are cutting-edge.
There is one aspect that hasn't managed to keep up however - the all-important battery life.
I'm not sure whether I have my rose-tinted shades on, but I do recall my old Nokia 3510i and Sony Ericcson K550i phones having lasted longer than today's phones. And that was while playing tons of mobile games downloaded from questionable Russian websites...
Sure, the batteries have gotten physically smaller but it seems like we aren't seeing the rapid progress that occurred with the actual handsets.
Instead, what we get are super-thin phones that require a USB cable after six or seven hours. Remember when that was considered a short battery life? Now, many hardware manufacturers proudly tout this "all-day life" - as if it's a milestone.
Looking for a top-shelf smartphone that bucks the trend is an exercise in futility, it would seem, aside from a few exceptions.
But it's time for the industry to invest heavily in battery tech beyond the admittedly cool wireless charging solutions. Because there's been little evolution and innovation over the years.
It's not as if the industry isn't trying however, as Motorola tackles the problem head-on with the RAZR Maxx smartphone.
Released late last year, the handset manages to pack record-setting battery life into a svelte 8.99mm frame, slightly thicker than the standard RAZR. The resulting boost in battery life is amazing, from a standby time of 204 hours in the original to 380 hours.
Apple has also opted for a thicker device, as seen with new iPad, being slightly larger than the older one thanks to a gargantuan battery - a necessity due to the power-chugging LTE connectivity.
It's a trade-off I'm more than willing to make if it means I can go for a weekend in the wilderness without my phone becoming an expensive brick.
However, not everyone is willing to add a millimetre or two to their handset to make way for a bigger battery. So what other options are out there?
For one, manufacturers have created processors with energy efficiency in mind, for example, Nvidia and their Tegra 3 chipset.
The chipset, used in the HTC One X and several other Android devices, is a quad-core beast, but also features a fifth, low-power core. This core gets used in lieu of the more power-hungry cores for functions like web-browsing, music playback and more. So efficient is the Tegra 3 that Nvidia claims it offers significant battery savings over the dual-core Tegra 2.
On the software side of things, manufacturers and developers have also devised some admirable solutions.
Again, Motorola has stood out with its Smart Actions feature, which lets people adjust settings based on specific triggers (e.g. location, time). So, for example, you can have the phone automatically turn Bluetooth and email polling off when it detects that you're at work or your battery is low.
It's a fantastic concept, and one that works pretty well in execution, and one we'd like to see on more platforms. But it's the exception once again, with app stores host to hundreds of "battery saver" programs that drain the phone at an even faster pace.
There are a few radical advancements in the works though, such as batteries made out of magnesium and molten salt, but the tech is still a few years away though, it seems.
Even the concept of quick-charging, which sees a device juiced up in under a minute, could be a reality in the next year or two, as this article from 2009 shows.
Either way, I'd much rather opt for a thick handset with a huge battery over a razor-thin device that conks out in a day.
What are your thoughts on the battery life of smartphones? Let us know below!