Is The Samsung Pay Mobile Payments System Killing Battery Life?

January 16, 2019         By: Steven Anderson

Mobile payments have had a bit of controversy connected to them, mostly regarding issues of security. One thing we almost never heard of, though, is issues of structural difficulties. Now, however, that’s changed, as reports are emerging to suggest that Samsung Pay’s very framework may be causing undue strain on users’ batteries.

The reports are connected to some anecdotal evidence, as users are reporting unexpected battery drain, and then tracing the problem back to “Android system.” Once they examine the offending system more closely, they soon discover that “Samsung Pay framework” is immediately connected to same, and are drawing conclusions accordingly. One user reported complete drain after about six hours, where normally, said user got between 24 and 28 hours with heavy streaming.

The biggest issue here is that Samsung Pay has been live for months now, and no such issue has been spotted until now. Fixes for the issue are equally odd, with some insisting that force-stopping the app has worked, as has disabling battery optimization, in the strangest twist of all.

Neither of these, nor any other “workarounds” brought up so far, has been shown to solve the problem permanently, and in fact must be done fresh each time in order to reap the benefits.

For its part, Samsung has kept quiet on the issue as of this writing, so official word on causes or fixes isn’t on hand and may not be forthcoming.

What this suggests, at least from an outsider’s perspective, is that something may have happened in a recent software update. Updates to apps happen fairly often, and they sometimes actually cause new and unexpected problems as updates conflict with established system code. A look at Samsung Pay’s Google Play page shows that there was an update on December 20, 2018, and given that the word about power drain happened only recently, there may be a connection between the December 20 update and the issues of power consumption.

Hopefully Samsung will have more on this issue soon, because if it can’t get it fixed, it may have handed Google Pay a huge new advantage.