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Energy consumption has been mostly neglected in network coding (NC) research so far. This work investigates several different properties of NC that influence the energy consumption and thus are important when designing NC systems for battery-driven devices. Different approaches to the necessary implementation of coding operations and Galois fields arithmetic are considered and complexity expressions for coding operations are provided. We also benchmark our own mobile phone implementation on a Nokia N95 under different settings. Several NC strategies are described and compared, furthermore expressions for transmission times are developed. It is also shown that the use of NC introduces a tradeoff between reduction in transmission time and increase in energy consumption.