An interesting point about the new Moga controllers - will charging your phone while playing games be a recipe for overheat / battery damage?

So the new Moga controllers charge your phone while you play games (probably via microUSB cable):

A commenter pointed out that charging phone + playing high-end games = maybe not so great for your phone. I hadn't thought of this, but yes, there will be issues with that, and specifically with the heat it will cause.

I do know that Li-ion cells do not like exposure to above-average heat for long periods of time, and that repeated exposure will eventually result in diminishing battery capacity.

I also know that charging generates heat, and that playing games and thus generating a lot of GPU / CPU load generates more heat, and that eventually this will lead to core frequency throttling on the phone, as it attempts to reduce temperature. Some phones also dim the display when this happens, and in particularly hot circumstances, the phone will just shut down.

I know this is a rather common occurrence, for example, on the US Galaxy S III. Plastic frame (not a good conductor) + tightly packed components + hot running chipset (Snapdragons do run warm) make it more prone than average to overheat scenarios either when out in the sun or playing high-end games. I can only imagine charging it while doing these things makes the problem occur faster.

Tl;dr your smartphone is not a desktop, a laptop, or even a handheld console, and was not designed with consistent, high thermal load in mind. It does not have the thermal transfer properties necessary to endure hours of high CPU / GPU load tasks without damaging itself, so that's why it throttles down and eventually shuts off when temperatures get high.

I never really thought of this as a drawback to things like Moga, but if you were playing high-end games a couple hours a day on your phone while charging it, I'm willing to bet you'd quickly ruin the battery (eg, within months), and probably, eventually, cause some kind of damage to the SoC.

Puts some of the more niche hardware (Ouya, Gamestick, Shield) out there into perspective. Then again, tablets have way better thermal transfer properties than phones (more surface area / space between heat-generating components), so maybe we should all just do on our mobile gaming on them, which is sort of what seems to be happening anyway.
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