Telkom appears to have fixed LTE battery drain issue affecting Samsung smartphones

Telkom appears to have fixed a battery drain issue affecting certain smartphones connected to its LTE network.

MyBroadband received feedback from users earlier this year that when their smartphones were connected to Telkom’s LTE network, their battery life dropped much faster than when connected to 3G or other networks.

We then tested the claims with Nokia 5 and Samsung Galaxy S8 test benches.

A SIM from Vodacom, MTN, Telkom, Cell C, and Rain were placed in the devices and they were connected to their respective LTE networks.

Both tests found that the Telkom devices lost battery power at a much quicker rate than the other smartphones.

MyBroadband first reported the issue affecting Nokia 5 phones, after which Telkom implemented a fix.

Following the fix, MyBroadband conducted the same test using a Samsung Galaxy S8 test bench.

The results were the same, with the Telkom device losing battery power at a much faster rate than the other devices.

MyBroadband contacted Telkom multiple times since the tests were conducted in July 2018, but did not receive feedback on the issue.

New test

Despite no feedback from Telkom, users stated they had seen improvements in Telkom battery life following the Galaxy S8 test article.

To see whether the Telkom battery drain issue had been resolved, we set up a new test using five Samsung Galaxy S8 smartphones.

The devices were placed in a house in Centurion where the networks had almost identical signal strength.

A custom version of the MyBroadband Speed Test app was used to measure signal strength, and all networks sat on, or very close, to -70dBm.

-140dBm is considered a “weak” signal, while -44dBm is considered “strong”.

All phones were then charged to 100%, and connected to an active Wi-Fi connection and connected to their respective LTE networks. The battery test started on 25 September just before 07:00.

On 26 September at 06:45, 24 hours later, the Galaxy S8 devices had the following battery levels – indicating the Telkom battery drain was in line with other networks.

  • MTN – 79%
  • Vodacom – 82%
  • Rain – 82%
  • Telkom – 85%
  • Cell C – 90%

Telkom – no comment

Telkom was asked for feedback on the apparent fix for the battery drain issue, but the company did not respond to questions.

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Telkom appears to have fixed LTE battery drain issue affecting Samsung smartphones