Portable apparatus or device (100) is a portable cellular radiotelephone, which is powered by main and auxiliary batteries (101, 102) in an operating state. The main and auxiliary batteries (101, 102) include respective memories (402, 410) for storing a 64- bit registration number and 1024 bits of data for identifying the type and brand of such batteries which are known to be reliable and safe for both operating and charging modes of operation. Memories (402, 410) store a laser-engraved 64-bit registration number and 1024 bits of data. In order to uniquely identify the batteries (101, 102), the 64-bit registration number includes a twelve-bit brand code having a predetermined brand code value and an eight-bit type code having a predetermined type code value, and the 1024 bits of data include a unique multi-character message. By identifying the unique brand code, type code and multi-character message when a battery is inserted into portable device (100), it can be insured that the portable device (100) will be operated with a reliable and safe battery. Otherwise, the portable device is turned off and the battery is not charged.