1. mhmediaonline's Avatar
    Hi All,

    I've had my 64Gb PlayBook for about 4 months now and recently I've noticed a battery usage pattern that's rendered it practically unusable. I'll be using the PB normally, and the battery will slowly discharge as expected as Battery Guru confirms. Once it reaches 51% though, Battery Guru will show a totally level "discharge" for about 15 minutes, then the PB powers off. If I plug it into a charger, I get the traditional red flash + 5 green flashes, but the PB takes ages to charge, even with stack charging.

    Anyone got any ideas as to the cause, and theories as to what remedies Blackberry might suggest would be appreciated. To be honest, I don't feel as though I can trust the device in its present state on a long trip.
    peter9477 likes this.
    04-10-13 09:03 AM
  2. WolvieMkM's Avatar
    Hi All,

    I've had my 64Gb PlayBook for about 4 months now and recently I've noticed a battery usage pattern that's rendered it practically unusable. I'll be using the PB normally, and the battery will slowly discharge as expected as Battery Guru confirms. Once it reaches 51% though, Battery Guru will show a totally level "discharge" for about 15 minutes, then the PB powers off. If I plug it into a charger, I get the traditional red flash + 5 green flashes, but the PB takes ages to charge, even with stack charging.

    Anyone got any ideas as to the cause, and theories as to what remedies Blackberry might suggest would be appreciated. To be honest, I don't feel as though I can trust the device in its present state on a long trip.
    Sounds like some of the cells in your battery are cooked, I've seen similar behaviour out of laptops.
    04-10-13 09:40 AM
  3. peter9477's Avatar
    If memory serves me well, this is consistent with a situation where one of the two batteries is defunct. The PlayBook actually has two inside, covering roughly 1/3 each on the left and right sides of the device (with most of the circuitry in the center third). I believe (not certain) that if one battery is bad, it may still work and you'll see a situation like this.

    If you contact BB, which you should as it's still under warranty, I expect they'll advise you to do a full discharge and full charge and maybe another discharge, and see if anything changes. They're also pretty consistent in suggesting people do a wipe and/or reinstall... (The "keep awake" feature in BG is handy for this... and you can make it go pretty quick if you set brightness to maximum and disable auto-dim.)

    What's the "health" reading show? And if you export the data and examine the last few days, do you see any odd changes (big jumps) in voltage or other readings at the moment the level hits that 51%?
    04-10-13 09:41 AM
  4. mhmediaonline's Avatar
    Thanks for that folks - I suspected that one of the cells may be dead/dying..

    The battery health on BG is odd - 99% - 51% the battery health is showing as 100%, then when the problem occurs it goes to 0%. Also, I notice that the number of charges when healthy is shown at 28, then when the problem occurs it goes to 0. Odd, and annoying. As regards odd changes, the only thing is the rate of discharge on BG which shows as a 90% graph: it's as if the first battery discharges, hands over to battery 2 which is .. er, dead.

    Yeah, I'm expecting a wipe/reload request, and luckily i've been able to save my data :-/
    04-10-13 09:57 AM
  5. FF22's Avatar
    I'll just throw in the phone numbers if necessary:

    The PB has a one year warranty to the original purchaser. It also has 90 free Tech support. I do not know how Rim deals with "quasi-tech support v. warranty"

    Rim Support
    Tel:
    Canada Toll Free: 1-877-644-8405
    United States Toll Free: 1-877-644-8410
    Puerto Rico Toll Free: 1-855-651-4936
    Email: playbooksupport@blackberry.com (this route generally does not work and a call is necessary)

    (UK Support) 0800 096 2805

    Playbook French Support
    Smartphones BlackBerry Z10 - Tous les Tlphones Portables BlackBerry - FR - France
    Phone : 0800 914 533 (within 90 days from activation)

    BlackBerry Customer Support Center
    Austria:0800-297-476
    Belgium:800-77-980
    RIM (Brasil Support toll free number): 0800-022-3161
    Bulgaria: 00800-118-1115
    Denmark: 802-50198
    France: 800-914-533
    Germany: 800-181-6530
    Italy: 800-789-272
    Luxembourg: 800-2-2187
    Netherlands: 800-022-7316
    Norway: 00-1-647-426-7058
    Poland: 00-800-112-43-59
    Portugal: 800-827-760
    Russia: 8-800-100-9643
    South Africa: 0800988892
    Spain: 900-866-969
    Sweden: 02-079-4448
    Switzerland: 0-800-802-492
    United Kingdom: 08000962805

    Phone-Numbers of BlackBerry PLAYBOOK- Helpdesks...

    Germany: 0800 1816530 (Gebhrenfrei)

    North-America: 1 877 255 2377 (Toll Free)

    UK: 0808 100 7466 (Toll Free UK only)

    Outside UK: +44 1753 558400

    Worldwide: 1 519 888 6181

    help@blackberry.com

    (BTW: Helpdesk for BlackBerry devices -except PlayBook- for Germany:
    0180 3302626)
    peter9477 likes this.
    04-10-13 10:21 AM
  6. peter9477's Avatar
    The battery health on BG is odd - 99% - 51% the battery health is showing as 100%, then when the problem occurs it goes to 0%. Also, I notice that the number of charges when healthy is shown at 28, then when the problem occurs it goes to 0. Odd, and annoying. As regards odd changes, the only thing is the rate of discharge on BG which shows as a 90% graph: it's as if the first battery discharges, hands over to battery 2 which is .. er, dead.
    I confess I couldn't entirely follow that, but the gist of it seems to be that both the health and cycle count values also change sporadically.

    I think the cycle count is a telltale sign of serious trouble. I believe that count is maintained by the microcontroller(s) inside the batteries themselves, rather than merely being tracked by the OS. Generally the interface to a microcontroller like that uses a very simple type of connection, and if you're getting alternate 28 and 0 values there, it's a sign either that a battery is pooched, or that the connection to that battery is flaky. Either way, it's a sure sign of a hardware problem.

    My advice is be patient with the first tier support at BB who will likely take you through a bit of a script, but at least mention some of what you're seeing here with Battery Guru. There are probably hundreds of support staff, and you're likely to be dealing with one who's never heard of the app, though I know of many cases now of people who've used readings from it to support their RMA request. Possibly you'll hit it lucky and get an employee who is familiar with it and will trust your data more.

    (I'm the developer of Battery Guru, by the way, in case that wasn't apparent.)
    mhmediaonline likes this.
    04-10-13 10:24 AM
  7. mhmediaonline's Avatar
    Many thanks to all who have replied - unfortunately it has confirmed my suspicions and I'll need to speak to tech Support (I'm a Tech Support guy too :-)

    If anything weird/wonderful/interesting turns up as a result of my conversations I'll post it here!
    peter9477 likes this.
    04-10-13 10:40 AM
  8. jpash549's Avatar
    Thanks for that folks - I suspected that one of the cells may be dead/dying..

    The battery health on BG is odd - 99% - 51% the battery health is showing as 100%, then when the problem occurs it goes to 0%. Also, I notice that the number of charges when healthy is shown at 28, then when the problem occurs it goes to 0. Odd, and annoying. As regards odd changes, the only thing is the rate of discharge on BG which shows as a 90% graph: it's as if the first battery discharges, hands over to battery 2 which is .. er, dead.

    Yeah, I'm expecting a wipe/reload request, and luckily i've been able to save my data :-/
    Thought the PB was supposed to try to charge each battery to the same voltage. Don't think you use all the voltage out of one battery then switch to the other like you do in your two tank truck. Thus following the voltage curve might be more informative than talking about per cent charge. The behavior of the software estimating percent charge is certainly strange and may change with recalibration.
    04-10-13 10:57 PM
  9. jpash549's Avatar
    Since OP says it takes ages to charge wonder if the discharge mode where the charging system is trying to balance out charging to same voltage between two different batteries with one being very weak and hard to get any charge into. Can the system put much charge in the good battery before it gets the bad one going? Suppose one battery cant be charged either because it is totally kaput or disconnected? Does that explain some of the fail to charge threads we see?
    04-11-13 02:11 AM
  10. peter9477's Avatar
    Thought the PB was supposed to try to charge each battery to the same voltage. Don't think you use all the voltage out of one battery then switch to the other like you do in your two tank truck. Thus following the voltage curve might be more informative than talking about per cent charge. The behavior of the software estimating percent charge is certainly strange and may change with recalibration.
    I suspect it's not simply a passive connection with both in parallel, the way you'd do in a much older and cruder system. Quite possibly both batteries are connected independently through a single battery controller, and can be connected or disconnected under its control. (Or one is a "master" and the other a "slave" without its own controller.) Either way, it's probably too hard to guess exactly how this would affect what symptoms we see when various things go wrong.

    If someone would like to send me a completely dead and useless PlayBook, I'd be happy to dissect it and trace some of this stuff out, "for science!" :-)
    jpash549 likes this.
    04-11-13 09:19 AM
  11. jpash549's Avatar
    I suspect it's not simply a passive connection with both in parallel, the way you'd do in a much older and cruder system. Quite possibly both batteries are connected independently through a single battery controller, and can be connected or disconnected under its control. (Or one is a "master" and the other a "slave" without its own controller.) Either way, it's probably too hard to guess exactly how this would affect what symptoms we see when various things go wrong.

    If someone would like to send me a completely dead and useless PlayBook, I'd be happy to dissect it and trace some of this stuff out, "for science!" :-)
    Thanks for the explanation. Hope somebody takes you up on your suggestion. Still feel when people post questions about per cent charge they also ought to include reported battery voltage which they have from your most useful app. Also don't suppose any RIM sources would explain the configuration. Hope any new tablet would have a single battery which is more easily replaceable.
    04-11-13 12:40 PM

Similar Threads

  1. So according to Rogers this is normal battery usage...
    By Foberry in forum BlackBerry Bold 9930/9900
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 09-14-11, 11:52 PM
  2. Normal Battery usage?
    By RedWings in forum BlackBerry Curve 83xx
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 07-12-08, 06:10 PM
  3. battery usage
    By vegasguido in forum BlackBerry Pearl 8100
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 04-30-08, 08:12 AM
  4. Very Curious About Curve Battery usage....
    By itsjustmeee in forum General BlackBerry Discussion
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 04-10-08, 04:40 PM
  5. BB Themes and Battery Usage
    By apcarandang in forum BlackBerry Pearl 8100
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 04-30-07, 10:34 PM
LINK TO POST COPIED TO CLIPBOARD