Samsung has reportedly reached out to Chrome Unboxed to confirm that it is not only aware of battery problems associated with the Galaxy Chromebook. It’s also actively looking for a fix.
The company isn’t outlining exactly what fixes it might have on offer. So it isn’t clear if it plans to reduce the power consumption of the two-in-one laptop. There are a number of ways it could work to accomplish that. But it is said to be working directly with Google to find a fix.
Also unclear is exactly when the company plans to deliver the improvements. However, Samsung does indicate that the problem is a high-priority matter. So it should be included in an update to the gadget relatively quickly.
What Galaxy Chromebook battery problems need to be addressed?
The battery problems associated with the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook aren’t the worst the company has ever faced. The South Korean tech giant was forced to discontinue its Galaxy Note 7 flagship smartphone in 2016, for instance. That was after the device was found to have a serious battery defect causing some units to explode.
This time around, the issue is battery life, as hinted above. The company claimed, at the launch of the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook, that its device would last users up to 10-hours on a single charge. While that’s certainly possible, attaining that requires serious sacrifice on behalf of users. The source notes, for instance, that the laptop can achieve 6-hours of battery life at around 50-percent screen brightness.
That isn’t going to be feasible for every user, though. Some users will need to press brightness of the display closer to 60- or 70-percent brightness. Under those circumstances, sources have reported battery life well under four hours. That’s a long way from the “all-day” battery life Samsung promised from this Chromebook.
Why are there battery problems at all?
Now, there are several reasons why the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook is likely to suffer from a shortened lifespan. Not least of all, this is the first Chromebook to pack an AMOLED display panel and that’s been set to a 4K resolution. The battery is also pushing power to a relatively powerful 10th-gen Core i5 U-series processor.
The final possible problem is the size of the battery. Samsung’s latest Chromebook is super thin, at just 9.9mm thick. That’s just over the size of the average smartphone. And that leaves only a limited amount of space internally for a battery. The battery used, in this case, is a 49.2Wh battery.
The problem with pointing to those as underlying issues is that this isn’t the only Chromebook with those specs. Looking past the AMOLED display.
Plenty of Chromebooks come with a 4K display panel and at least a few of those ships with similarly powerful internal hardware. So it isn’t clear exactly why this Chromebook drains so much power.
That leaves a lot of room for speculation with regard to how Samsung will fix the issue. It has plenty of options ranging from changing how the display works at lower resolutions to reducing the performance of some components.
On the other hand, it may opt to include a low-power or power-saving mode. The latter solution has already been spotted in the Chromium Gerrit. So, to some extent, it seems the most likely to be used.