If you’ve ever looked at your phone’s screen and noticed it’s slowly turning black, it’s probably not a good sign it’s about to go dark.
But that doesn’t mean you have to panic.
If your phone has been on a silent shutdown for a long time, you may be able to identify the reason for the shutdown by looking at the time it was last on screen, a new study suggests.
In a new paper published in the journal IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Systems, researchers from the University of California, Berkeley and the University in California, Santa Barbara used a custom software to analyze how long your phone was on the lock screen.
They found that the average phone on the market has only about 30 percent battery left, and that the longest it lasted was 2.5 days, compared to about 20 days for phones that have been idle for a year or more.
“This is a great time to go out and purchase a phone,” said study co-author Jeremy Schlosser, a computer science professor at Berkeley.
“There are a lot of reasons for people to buy phones, but this one is really important.”
The researchers used the software to identify a phone that had been idle and then tracked its activity, including the time at which it was on and off the lockscreen.
Using this information, they could identify when the phone was idle and when it was awake, allowing them to figure out what was causing the device to turn off and on at night.
The researchers also took note of the phone’s Bluetooth connection and found that most devices were in a stable, stable state.
The research was based on data from about 10,000 Android phones that had logged into the Android device tracking app.
Using the software, they were able to find the average idle time for each phone in their sample.
Using the same software, the researchers found that about a third of phones were idle for an average of 7.7 days, but only about one-quarter were on a lock screen for longer than three days.
The other quarter of phones, however, were locked and were only idle for 5.5 hours or so.
Using that information, the team determined that the idle period for most phones was just under two weeks.
The remaining phone owners were on average only on the phone for two days.
If you’ve had a smartphone for a few years and you’re worried about it turning off, don’t be too sure, the authors of the paper cautioned.
The software used to analyze this data did not tell them how long a phone was actually locked, so it could only tell you if you were looking at a phone which had been locked.
“You may be looking at phones which have been locked for several days,” Schlossers said.
“You could be looking into a device that’s locked for a week, and then you could be checking the status of that device for a day or two.
You can’t tell whether it’s a phone you should be worried about.”
The study was funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation.