3DS Battery Life Is Even Worse Than You Thought
We knew that the 3DS was not going to have very good battery life — Nintendo promised 3-5 hours of juice for 3DS games, 5-8 for regular DS games — but the folks at Engadget have gotten their hands on a Japanese 3DS and played around with it for a week, and they say that the battery life is consistently on the very low end of that spectrum, topping out at 3 hours, 15 minutes.
The biggest 3DS disappointment is absolutely the battery life. The 1,300mAh battery is 30 percent larger than the one in the DS Lite but simply cannot deliver the same sort of longevity we’ve come to expect from previous Nintendo consoles, topping out for us at three hours and fifteen minutes with WiFi enabled. Compare that to the 15 hours the DS Lite could manage and you can see why we’re disappointed. Disabling WiFi added about another half hour.
Odds are, when the 3DS hits American shores on March 27th, the battery life will not be substantially better. A company called Nyko hopes to solve the problem by releasing a $20 battery pack that it claims doubles the battery life of the 3DS. Maybe so, but a) that’s extra money on top of an already expensive machine, and b) in our experience, even when they work, external battery packs tend to be rather clunky affairs.