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Google Chrome 57 takes major steps to improve speed and power usage

You're going to want to update your Chrome browser.

Mar 22, 2017, 11:19 am*

Tech

John-Michael Bond 

John-Michael Bond

Google Chrome is a lovely browser, but like a significant other you adore with all your heart, it still has some issues it needs to work out. Issues like power consumption.

In fact, Microsoft’s main selling point with its Edge browser is that it’s simply less of a power hog that Google‘s uber-popular alternative. Google’s been working power consumption, and this week’s release of Chrome 57 takes big strides in improving the issue by tackling one of the biggest drains on power: your background tabs.

Sometimes you end up with five, six, or 30 tabs open on your browser. Things happen. However, all those tabs are chewing up your battery. According to Google, background tabs account for a third of Chrome’s power usage on desktop, leading the company to work on throttling those tabs to reduce power.

Chrome 57 limits background tabs, so your computer’s average CPU load from the browser will be just 1 percent. To achieve these stats, Google is prioritizing tabs and throttling everything that isn’t using real-time connections or playing audio. This will let you keep listening to Pandora without that Apple Brown Betty recipe you’ve been saving wasting up all of your battery.

In all, Google found that Chrome 57 leads to 25 percent fewer busy background tabs that the previous version. While Google won’t say exactly how much improvement users can expect in their battery life, the company is promising to keep working on the issue.

H/T Chromium Blog

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*First Published: Mar 15, 2017, 4:33 pm