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Im looking for a new laptop battery.

Something thats confusing me is the number of cells in a battery; what is a cell? is it a smaller battery that exists in the larger battery?

If so, are the cells connected in series whose voltage sums to the voltage of the total battery?

Or are the "cells" connected in parallel...for reasons I can only guess at?

Also, and more to the point I am trying to figure out: I know laptop batteries are rated in mAh, how much charge it can hold. But would it be better to get a 12 cell battery or a 9 cell battery, both with the same charge capacity?

My intuition would be that fewer cells would be better because the lifetime of the battery will be longer: Since the internal resistance of the battery builds up in each cell, there will be less internal resistance if there are fewer cells (since they are in series).

Here I am assuming that all the cells, whether they are in a 9 or 12 cell battery, develop internal resistance at the same rate; which I dont know if is true.

Thanks for any help

Raman