Android OS Battery Usage Test for 9 Popular ROMs for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus (CDMA/LTE) (Toro)
The above results are those of what I call an “idle test”, where the phone was put in Airplane mode, to try to remove the negative battery effects of radio towers changing, and other reception related battery drains. Additionally, the phone was left untouched for the duration of the test, so as not to let the display or brightness of the screen be a drain on the battery. And similarly, all applications were closed prior to testing, in hopes of allowing the battery lost to be due to as few factors as possible. This, in my eyes, gave a better result for the overall battery use by the OS. Please note that, as seen in the screenshots below, each test was not exactly 7 hours, because over time, I noticed that the battery change was negligible after about 6 hours. Additionally, after running many 1 hour idle tests for many different ROMs, I also noticed the Fraction Lost due to OS did not change very much between 1 hour tests and 6-7 hour tests. So take the data as you wish, but note that I tried to be as careful as possible, and believe that the data is representative of the ROMs used.
Now with all that said, I do believe there are outliers here. Notably, AXI0M Rebirth v2.5 is a ROM that was just released a few days ago, and is still very much in the testing phase. The only reason I include it is to allow the developer the ability to see that the battery still needs some tweaking with respect to OS idling. I also chose not to test with unstable releases, or those not popular enough, or those without very much support. I do realize there are others I should probably test too, so feel free to comment which ROMs you believe to be worth comparing to these 9.
One thing I noticed with the battery lives is that typically the best battery statistics were seen with ROMs that were the “lightest”, or the ones that had the smallest .zip files. For example, Liquid Smooth had the smallest OS zip package of them all, and additionally had the best battery lost statistics, and the best fraction lost statistics. I noticed that this wasn’t a coincidence. I don’t know too much about how the OS runs and works while idling, so I encourage anyone who knows about this to a high degree to please comment about it and share the knowledge.
In addition to battery life, other characteristics of the ROMs that will influence my decision on which to go back to are the available launchers, the custom lockscreens, and obviously the overall speed and stability. After playing with almost all launchers available, my favorite is Apex Launcher, followed by Nova Launcher. I can definitely say I won’t be going back to any ROM that doesn’t have one of these launchers. As for lockscreens, most ROMs had this ability, and almost all were stable enough to not be eliminated from the comparisons. But overall, I would say the 3 ROMs that I will only be going back to would be Liquid Smooth, AOKP, and GummyNex. Liquid Smooth v1.0 is actually the final build of this ROM, and as you can see, it’s great on battery, super stable, and has every option you would ever want. That would be my first choice, but if you need constant builds, with more options, then I would probably choose AOKP or GummyNex. DroidTh3ory’s hybrid AXI0M Crossbreed has just as many options too, and should be as great on battery life, being based on Team Kang’s ROMs. Something worth noting is that every ROM I tested is worth going back to, but after you try them all, you will start to get picky, and you will pick favorites. So with that said, I recommend you all to try most of these ROMs, and then pick your favorite, but I would start with those above that showed great battery usage stats.
Please leave a comment if you have anything to add. Thanks!
Edit: Liquid Smooth v1.0 is NOT the final release.
Edit: for more comments and ideas on reproducing this test, check out this thread.