The landline telephone network is now unusable

Adviser: Should you always put a cordless phone on the base?

This topic is probably almost as old as the cordless telephone itself. What to do with the telephone receiver? Always on the base station or is that bad for the battery? These are the questions many cordless landline phone users ask themselves. On the usual discussion forums and advice communities, there are numerous different opinions, as well as tips and tricks in the supposedly correct handling of batteries.

Many argue with their own experience and unchecked, and sometimes quite adventurous, theories. But what about the correct charging of batteries from a technical point of view? What can a modern battery withstand and what should be left on?

In the past: Everything was different and yet a little better

If you look at the first cordless telephones from the early 1990s, the tips on protecting materials are not so unjustified. The batteries of that time had a very limited lifespan compared to their modern counterparts and only had a very manageable number of charging cycles. In addition, the electronics in the base stations were rather rudimentary and overloaded quickly. Another phenomenon is the well-known memory effect. This occurs especially with older NiCd type batteries. Through constant partial loading and unloading, these continuously lose their capacity. It can happen that these batteries become absolutely unusable after a relatively short period of time.

Modern accumulators

Considerable advances have been made in rechargeable batteries in recent years. New types such as NiMH (nickel metal hydride) as well as LiIon (lithium ions) and LiPo (lithium polymer) have almost completely replaced the old NiCd batteries. These new batteries are characterized by an increased capacity, a lower weight and a reduced memory effect. And a lot has happened with the base stations as well. The simple charging circuits have been replaced by more modern and partly intelligent electronics. So the battery is always effectively and optimally charged. This increases the service life and prevents overcharging.

Here is a brief overview of the most common types of batteries and their lifespan:

NiCd battery: 800-1500 charge cycles and 7-8 years lifespan

NiMH battery: 350-500 charge cycles and 3-5 years service life

Li Ion battery: 500-800 charging cycles and 5-7 years service life

The specified charging cycles correspond to full cycles and thus such a battery can be charged significantly more often in practice than the technical data suggests.

What does all this mean for normal users and their phones?

It is completely safe to always place your phone on the base station. Partial recharging means that nothing happens to the batteries and the phone is always fully charged and ready for use. In addition, the sometimes annoying search for the phone that has been put down somewhere is no longer necessary. Much more dangerous than constant charging, then as now, is deep discharging of the batteries. A complete deep discharge will permanently and irreparably damage the batteries. They lose an enormous amount of capacity and, in the worst case, are completely unusable.


As long as the battery is not deeply discharged or the phone is lying around unused for several months (discharging!), Modern batteries from Gigaset, for example, do not care whether they are on the base station, next to it or anywhere else. Modern rechargeable batteries can cope with sporadic charging behavior by the user very well and no longer suffer as much from the memory effect as their predecessors.