Can a smartphone measure temperature?

As you know, smartphones have many sensors. Some may be responsible for determining the position of the device in space, while others are responsible for the illumination by adjusting the brightness of the screen. But there is another type of sensor in the smartphone – a temperature sensor. There may be several of these sensors in a smartphone. Some can detect the temperature of the battery, while others can monitor the temperature of the processor. However, is it possible to measure the ambient temperature using a smartphone?

Can a smartphone measure temperature?

How to measure temperature using a smartphone?

Some problems may arise here. There are smartphones with temperature sensors that estimate the ambient temperature. Examples include the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4. However, why do you think modern Galaxy devices do not have this feature?

The fact is that smartphones often get warm during use, which leads to the problem of sensor placement. Where to install a temperature sensor? You can try to place it on the end of the phone, but the end, as a rule, is made of metal and acts as a radiator, removing heat from the chipset and spreading it evenly over the body. The S4 and Note 3 were made of plastic, so the problem was not so obvious there.

There are no other options for positioning the temperature sensor. For S4 and Note 3 owners, Samsung recommends using the temperature sensor only if the phone has been at rest for a long time and its body is cold enough. Otherwise, the performance of such a sensor may be unsatisfactory.

The ambiguous operation of the sensor in the Galaxy Note 3 has led to the fact that some users claim that the sensor shows the ambient temperature quite accurately, while others, on the contrary, consider it inaccurate. And it is precisely because of these issues, with many conditions affecting the sensor's performance, that Samsung has decided to get rid of it in new generations of devices.

However, there is a way out of the situation. Companies can use real-time calculations to determine the difference between the processor temperature and the temperature produced by the sensor on the device case. With the help of tricky calculations, you can get a fairly accurate reading of the ambient temperature.

App cheat

On Google Play, you can find applications that measure air temperature, but you certainly should not trust them. The main task of such applications is ad insertions in order to make money from users.

What other sensors can smartphones offer?

In the Galaxy Note 3, in addition to the temperature sensor, an atmospheric pressure (barometer) and humidity sensor were built in. Why does a smartphone need a barometer? Measurement of barometric pressure is useful for older people, who are strongly affected by it. In addition, the barometer will help fishermen to predict the behavior of fish. The humidity sensor is also very important, at low temperatures and high humidity, the cold outside will feel stronger, and at high temperatures and high humidity outside, people will feel stuffy.

Thus, humidity and pressure sensors, along with a temperature sensor, can significantly improve the quality of life for people.

How the temperature sensor works

Typically a thermistor is used to measure temperature. It is a semiconductor resistor that has a relationship between air temperature and resistance. As the temperature rises, the electronic resistance becomes lower and vice versa. Thermistors are capable of accurately detecting temperatures up to 100 degrees.

What conclusion can be drawn from all the material? Smartphones are really capable of measuring temperatures. But they mainly measure the temperature of the processor and battery. In the case of ambient air, manufacturers need to find a way to accurately calculate the temperature to compensate for the heat from the processor.

It is interesting to know the opinion of our readers. Do you need a temperature sensor in your smartphone? And why would it be useful for application developers, in your opinion? Share your opinion in the comments below and do not forget to join our Telegram.

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