I can’t verify this, but I saw a lot of stories some time ago – back before everything was about a pandemic – about 5G, specifically about the energy required to support 5G on the phones, and wanted to write about it.
The Qualcomm Snapdragon 865, which is expected to end up in most high-end Android phones in 2020, will not have a LTE modem. This is a bit counterintuitive for a SoC, as an additional chips is needed for 4G and 5G, and this will mean a higher demand for power.
At the same time, it appears that the chosen modulation for 5G, “Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplexing”, is very power-hungry, so much so that a 5G base station requires 3 times as much power as a 4G base station – and more 5G base stations are needed. It will also use a lot more power on the mobile phone, further straining the battery performance.
I wonder if the advances in Lithium batteries will be enough to balance this out.