Is Your Browser Stealing Precious Battery Life?

People go to such great lengths to extend laptop battery life—going blind staring at dimmed screens, developing repetitive stress injuries by ditching mice—that they miss the obvious. Like browsers, which apparently have a huge impact on battery life.

Seeing as laptop users have a browser open pretty much at all times, AnandTech ran exhaustive tests on Windows machines, Intel and AMD, netbook and notebook, to see if switching browsers made any difference in how long batteries hold out. And hey, it does! In some tests, there was a 30% advantage between the worst browser—always Safari—and the best—Internet Explorer 8. Seriously.

In fact, Microsoft's browser came in front across the board, even inching out Firefox with Adblock by a few percent. It's hard to say why IE8 is so power-thrifty, but the most processor-intensive operations a browser does, outside of running Flash content, are in rendering Javascript, which IE8 kind of sucks at. So, mystery solved, maybe! Firefox, Chrome and to a lesser extent Opera held up fine, but depending on what kind of laptop you're running, and how willing you are to ditch your browser, there are quite a few sweet battery minutes up for grabs here. Full breakdown at [AnandTech]

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