Google has announced the plans to significantly cut down the amount of processing power that is uses with the next release.
In the next Google Chrome version, the browser will freeze the tabs that are not currently in use and thus limit the average CPU load up to 1%. The innovation will prevent the background tabs from eating the Chrome power usage on desktop roughly by one third and help the device owners prolong the battery life.
This update will minimize the tabs that are regarded by API to be in the background. This will not apply to those tabs that have use the full capacity, so your videos and music will continue playing.
‘Efficient power usage is an important aspect of speed, one of Chrome’s key pillars,’ Alexander Timin, software engineer and power save at Google, wrote in a blog post.
Prolonged battery life
He says that in order to prolong battery life Chrome should bring down power impact from elements that users don’t see. The background tabs use a significant part of energy although they are not in use.
Google does not say yet how much battery will be saved exactly. The suggested reduction will be approximately 25%.
‘In the long-term, the ideal is for background tabs to be fully suspended and instead rely on new APIs for service workers to do work in the background,’ wrote Timin.
He added that Chrome would go on taking steps in that direction to make life of users’ battery longer and not hinder developers anyhow.
This update was triggered by Microsoft pointing out that Chrome imposed excessive usage of laptop batteries. Google’s biggest contestant made some tests in June 2016. In these tests, the same video was running on four identical laptops, but on different browsers: Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge and Opera.
According to these tests Google Chrome affected the battery in the worst way. The laptop only went on for 4 hours and 19 minutes.
Mozilla Firefox showed a better result which was 5 hours and 9 minutes. Opera kept the machine going for 6 hours and 18 minutes.
Opera has lasted so long as it has a specific power saving mode, that can identify whether your laptop is charging or not and puts the background activities such as plug-ins to the minimum.
However, the winner of the race has become MS Edge that lasted for 7 hours and 22 minutes, which is 70% longer than Chrome. Of course, MS broswer treats your battery in a much softer way. But let’s admit that it has far less features and extensions than Chrome does which makes it not so usable.
Eventually, Chrome reacted to these investigations. Google spokesman told MailOnline: ‘We’ve made significant improvements to power consumption in the past few releases, and it’s an area of continued focus and investment.
‘Since the beginning of the year, we’ve made a 33% improvement in video playback GPU/CPU power consumption on Windows 10.
‘And by Chrome 53, we feel confident that we’ll be at parity with other browsers in terms of power consumption for the majority of video playback on the internet.’