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Microsoft-conducted tests show how much of a battery hog Chrome really is [Video]


Despite being the most popular desktop browser in the world, Chrome is still a notorious resource and battery hog. While Google has promised to fix battery life many a time, many users have yet to notice significant improvements. Now, Microsoft has conducted a series of tests showing that Chrome is the most battery intensive browser on Windows 10. There’s always the possibility of bias, but the results do line up with most people’s experiences…

The first test is conducted in a lab controlled environment and involves the latest versions of Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Firefox, and Opera opening websites, scrolling through articles, and watching videos in an automated loop. Four Surface Books are placed side-by-side and hooked up to power monitoring equipment.

A Surface Book running Chrome is the first to power down, followed by Firefox, Opera, and finally Microsoft Edge. Microsoft’s browser lasts slightly over three hours longer than Chrome. However, the power equipment shows that Chrome comes in second on power consumption, using the second least amount of CPU after Edge, but consuming the most GPU of the four browsers by a fair margin.

In addition to the lab tests, Microsoft claims telemetry data aggregated from millions of Windows 10 devices show similar real-world results.

Last year, Google promised to improve battery performance on Macs using a variety of methods. However, it’s still clear that while it’s definitely one of the best performers, Chrome still sucks more juice than its competitors. Chrome also tries to manage battery life by intelligently pausing third-party plug-ins, like Flash. By default, Chrome will default to HTML5 by the end of the year and wants major websites to follow suit.


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Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: