These days, we’re starting to see more smartphones come with displays with a higher refresh rate that was popularized by the Razer Phone. Now, it should be pointed out that in the past, phones could have their display refresh rates increased through hidden settings, but it used to be discouraged as it would come at the cost of battery life.
So the question is, these days with bigger batteries and improved chipsets that are more energy efficient, would keeping your phone’s display at 120Hz be a bigger and noticeable battery drain compared to keeping it at 60Hz? That’s what PhoneBuff tries to find out in a battery test that uses the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra.
For those unfamiliar with refresh rates, because it is the number of times a phone’s display refreshes. The higher the refresh rate, the smoother animations look, which is great for videos and gaming, which is why many gaming monitors tend to offer up higher refresh rates. However, logically the more times a display refreshes, the more energy it should use.
As it turns out, higher refresh rates are still quite a battery hog because in the test, it seems that by using a 60Hz refresh rate, the Galaxy S20 Ultra managed to squeeze out 10 hours and 24 minutes with the screen on, while at 120Hz, it managed nearly an hour less at 9 hours 35 minutes.
An hour difference is quite a big deal but depending on how you use your phone, it may not matter, but it’s something to think about anyway.