The new MacBook Pros are seemingly superior to the last generation in every possible way, one notable downgrade seemingly lies in battery life: while old MacBook Pros were rated between eight and ten hours of battery life, the new models only get “up to 7 hours” across the board.
What’s the story? You might think it’s because of the bump to Sandy Bridge: after all, faster processors often suck up more juice. In fact, that may be part of the cause, but overall, the reason the battery life has “decreased” is because Apple is now reporting it more honestly.
It’s extremely common for computer manufacturers to wildly exaggerate battery life. That laptop you bought with ten hours of battery life might be lab tested as such just by leaving it open, idle, with the WiFi off and the display notched down to quarter brightness.
Apple’s now using a more honest testing method to arrive at battery life. Called Wireless Web protocol testing, they take each device, set the display to 50 percent brightness and then surf the 25 most popular websites, performing the main function of those sites over and over again, including playing Flash video.
So when the new MacBook Pros say they get up to 7 hours of battery life, it’s not really a downgrade: unlike the ten hours of battery life you were supposed to get last gen, but would be lucky to get half of, you can really bank on that 7 hours.