Battery life is one of the key elements in a portable device, especially a laptop or a tablet, and every user wants to use efficient apps and software to conserve charge. In the world of web browsing, Google Chrome has enjoyed the dominant market share on Windows, but it comes at a cost. Despite the popularity, Chrome is quite resource-hungry, draining the battery at an alarming rate. And now, the effects of Chrome on battery life are being confirmed by Microsoft in a series of battery experiment tests.
Microsoft has conducted two different tests in a controlled lab environment, comparing the results of Microsoft’s in-house browser, Edge with Chrome, Opera and Firefox. The first test was measuring the power consumption of the different browsers during a cycle of regular surfing on popular sites. The second test was a time-lapse video of different browser streaming the same video until the laptop ran out of charge. The systems used in each case is a Surface book, and the process was identical and automatic. The results identify Microsoft’s in-house browser, Edge, as the most power-efficient browser of the lot, allowing 36% to 53% extra juice in comparison to Chrome. Incidentally, Chrome performed the worst, clocking about 4 hours and 19 minutes in video streaming test before the laptop died, compared to the 7 hours and 22-minute runtime with Microsoft’s Edge. The lab controlled web browsing test also produce a similar trend, with Chrome performing the worst out of the four browsers. Aggregated telemetry data from millions of Windows 10 users further solidify the position of Microsoft Edge as the better browser for Windows.
Microsoft claims that fewer CPU cycles, lesser imprint on memory, and a lower number of background processes are few of the reasons of Edge’s power efficiency. Even with the stellar performance, Edge does not come without its caveats. Extensions are not supported on Edge yet, although it's planned to be included in the Anniversary Update. Edge is one of Microsoft’s biggest selling points for Windows 10, and these tests are a part of the campaign to promote the plus points of Microsoft Edge over other browsers. According to their blog, the Windows 10 Anniversary Update is scheduled to bring more improvements to battery efficiency on the table, further intensifying the competition with Google Chrome.