One of the biggest downfalls to using VR technology now is battery life. Since you’re using your phone to get VR content, you’re relying on its battery to keep the experience going. However, when watching Netflix, playing games, and indulging in certain VR content, you’re going to find that not only does your battery drain quicker but it heats up to the point that you could damage your phone during long-term use.
Let’s look at how to keep your battery running smoothly, how to keep it cool, and when to take a break from VR when using your Gear VR or other type of VR headsets.
What Happens to Your Battery When Using VR
It’s happened to all of us. We’ve been watching YouTube for a while, playing games while out and about, or on a long call, you feel the back of your phone and it’s blazing hot. While this is normal for batteries whether you’re using a phone or something else, it’s important to understand that your battery will run hot eventually.
With VR, the same thing holds true. The issue with VR is that most phone batteries are going to run hot much faster than you’re used to, which can lead to stuttering when watching videos or playing games. This derails the VR experience and frustrates consumers.
How to Avoid Overheating Your Battery
As of now, there’s no real way to avoid overheating your battery when using VR except to stop using VR. The key is finding out how long you can go before your battery begins to overheat, then ending your experience.
For most users, this isn’t practical, because it interrupts the experience. In most cases, you can’t go a full show on Netflix without your battery overheating to the point it renders Netflix unwatchable.
Some consumers have come up with creative solutions for keeping their battery cool, including attaching ice packs, using fans, and even standing in front of freezes while using the Gear VR and other VR headsets.
Note: Using ice, ice packs, and solutions that can cause moisture can damage your phone, so be cautious if you go this route.
There are some steps you can take to make your phone last longer before the battery overheats, including:
- Putting your phone in airplane mode
- Turning off Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, if possible
- Not using the back cover, if your headset comes with one
- Set the Gear VR brightness via app to 50 percent
- Use power saving mode, which can cause some games and apps not to perform well
When to Stop Using VR for Your Phone’s Sake
Anytime your VR app warns you your phone is overheating, you need to take a break. When that message pops up on you screen, you’re reaching a point you may begin damaging your battery.
If you feel the battery is too hot, it may be time to take a break, too; if you begin to see stuttering in a game or while watching a movie, it’s probably a good idea to stop as well.
It’s imperative that you keep your phone in working condition whether you use VR or not. Understanding the stress your battery is under when using VR is key to preventing overheating and issues that’ll damage your phone. Take the time to learn how your phone interacts with VR, take a break when necessary, and enjoy what the VR world has to offer.