Opera Claims Its New Power-Saving Mode Improves Battery Life By 50 Percent

Illustration for article titled Opera Claims Its New Power-Saving Mode Improves Battery Life By 50 Percent

You keep 34 browser tabs open and your laptop’s battery life sucks. Well, apparently Opera has a solution in the shape of a new power-saving mode, which it claims will extend a laptop’s battery life by up to 50 percent compared to Chrome.


The feature, available in the latest developer release of the browser, works by using a series of energy-saving tricks. Opera tells us they include reducing activity in background tabs, waking the CPU less often by optimizing JavaScript timers, automatically pausing unused plug-ins, reducing video frame rates to 30 frames per second, forcing usage of hardware accelerated video codecs and pausing animations in browser themes. Opera reckons these don’t have a major impact on the way in which you use the browser.

When the laptop’s running on battery power, a small icon appears near the address bar, allowing you to flick a toggle to turn the feature on.

The company’s tested the feature on a Lenovo X250 laptop running Windows 10. In the experiments, it opened 11 different websites, scrolled through them a little, left the tabs open, did nothing for a minute, then repeated the process again. And again. Until the battery died. Opera claims that the battery lasted on average 1 hour 54 minutes being used in this way with Chrome, or 1 hour 58 minutes with Opera. With Opera’s power-saving mode, though, it apparently ran for 2 hours 56 minutes.

Obviously, a test performed by the company itself is bound to provide a favorable result. And it’s hardly the most rigorous of trials, being performed on a single OS and laptop. But it’ll be interesting to see how it performs in the wild. You can download the developer release to take it for a spin.

Contributing Editor at Gizmodo. An ex-engineer writing about science and technology.


Pistol Whipped Cream

I think I’m going to switch with the Free VPN features. At least for netflix.