Chrome Adds New Features To Save Battery And Improve Browsing

Chrome posted information on The Keyword, written by Group Product Manager, Chrome, Mark Chang. It is a short post that focuses on Chrome’s new features that are optimized for your device’s battery and system memory.

From the post:

With the latest release of Chrome on desktop, we’re introducing two new performance settings so Chrome uses up to 40% and 10GB less memory to keep your tabs running smoothly, and extend your battery when it’s running low. We’ll be rolling out both Memory Saver and Energy Saver modes over the next several weeks globally for Windows, macOS and ChromeOS.

…Memory Saver mode frees up memory from tabs you aren’t currently using so the active websites you’re browsing have the smoothest possible experience. This is especially useful if you’re running other intensive applications, like editing family videos or playing games. Any inactive tabs will be reloaded when you need them.

Energy Saver maximizes battery life. Running low on battery and don’t have a laptop charger nearby? When you’re browsing the Web with Chrome and your device batter level reaches 20%, Chrome will save battery by limiting background activity and visual effects for websites with animations and videos.

TechCrunch reported that Google’s announcement comes a day after Microsoft announced that its Edge Browser put 1.38 billion tabs to sleep in September alone. According to Microsoft, sleeping a tab in Edge typically saves 83% of the memory it would normally occupy.

According to TechCrunch, Microsoft rolled out its version of these features, which can automatically put tabs to sleep after five minutes of inactivity (and can bring this down all the way to 30 seconds of inactivity), a couple of years ago and then once again improved it with the release of Edge 100 earlier this year. Edge also features a gaming mode, which can automatically reduce CPU usage when it detects that you are playing a game on your PC.

Engadget reported that these new features will be available as part of the m108 Chrome for desktop build. Google says all users will have access to them in the coming weeks and that it’s starting to roll out the build. You’ll be able to turn off these modes in the settings and make certain sites exempt from Memory Saver.

I think that people who use Chrome will make use of these new features, especially people who tend to have a whole lot of tabs open all the time.

The bigger picture, though, is what these features can do for people who have older computers. The memory saver feature that frees up tabs the person isn’t currently using could be a big improvement for those who have computers that freeze after too many tabs have been opened.