One of the problems that still haunts the users of the world’s most popular web browser, Google Chrome, is battery consumption (especially on Windows 10). The browser’s excessive use of RAM is already a topic of laughter and memes, pulling Google’s leg all the time.
However, the battery department would soon improve if Google implements some changes suggested by Microsoft. Now that the company has a Chromium-based browser of its own, it has been an active contributor to the Chromium Gerrit.
It’s a helpful gesture from Microsoft, which has previously hosted competitions for Google Chrome and others to show their inferior battery life in comparison to legacy Edge.
How will Microsoft reduce Chrome’s battery life?
Back in August 2019, Microsoft engineer Shawn Pickett explained that the increased battery consumption is because of the unnecessary media caching that happens when a video streams over the internet.
As a result, the hard drive is kept busy due to this power-hungry scenario, which in turn takes a toll on the device’s battery life. A much-needed change to overcome this issue is to stop the media caching process.
Now, as reported by Windows Latest, a new commit has popped up on the Chromium Gerrit with details on avoiding unnecessary media caching and reducing Chrome’s battery life problems.
Microsoft has added a check to see whether a device is running on battery or connected to an AC outlet. The goal is to make sure the new adjustment doesn’t affect the working of the browser when on AC power as the goal is to increase the battery life.
While early tests have shown improvements in battery life, whether the said change creates a noticeable performance difference for the user or not remains to be analyzed during the testing trials.
Right now, Google Chrome already includes a feature flag (Turn off caching of streaming media to disk) that lets you manually disable disk caching for media playback.
Pickett’s suggestion was acknowledged by a Google engineer who goes by the username Chrome Cunningham. He has been following up on the issue since August and said that they’re “hoping to kick off the experiment soon in Chrome.”
Still, there is no word on exactly when the new battery-saving feature will be completed and rolled out in the stable version of Google Chrome for Windows 10 and other platforms, although many are expecting it to happen sooner.