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Apple removes 'time remaining' battery life estimates from MacBooks

By Scorpus ยท 25 replies
Dec 14, 2016
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  1. Apple's latest MacBook Pros, particularly the 15-inch model, don't have the greatest battery life. Since their launch last month, buyers and reviewers have complained that battery life has regressed compared to previous-gen models, and that Apple's estimate of 10 hours of usage is a bit optimistic.

    Apple's solution? They've removed the 'time remaining' battery life estimate in the newest version of macOS Sierra.

    The reason for this is that, in the eyes of Apple, it's too hard to create an accurate battery life estimate for laptops that use Intel's latest processors. Modern CPUs aggressively change their clock speeds and power states to match the performance requirements of tasks, which can lead to fluctuating and inaccurate battery life estimates.

    Even though battery life estimates can fluctuate, they are still a useful feature in some circumstances, and this change doesn't actually address the issues with MacBook Pro battery life. Those that download macOS Sierra 10.12.2 will probably end up complaining not just about the battery life of their MacBook Pro, but also about the removal of 'time remaining' estimates.

    Perhaps Apple should have spent the last month optimizing the battery life of their MacBook Pros, rather than coming up with a software change that only hides their poor performance.

    Permalink to story.

  2. OcelotRex

    OcelotRex TS Guru Posts: 550   +299

    So not just on the new Macbooks with the issue but to all laptops that upgrade? Talk about throwing the baby out with the bathwater.
    wastedkill, alabama man and Greg S like this.
  3. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,286

    Now this is Apple Innovation at it's finest. I wonder how much they're going to tack onto the RRP for this ingenious, wonderful feat of engineering.
  4. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 5,511   +3,901

    Ahhhh .... the All American solution to the problem .... simply hide the problem!
  5. MarkHughes

    MarkHughes TS Addict Posts: 183   +94

    My Skyline isn't very good on fuel, This has inspired me to remove the fuel gauge so it's no longer a problem :)
  6. aMerkuri

    aMerkuri TS Enthusiast Posts: 55   +19

    I think I'll stay on my El Capitan. With each software updates macbooks and iOS devices tend to run slower and battery life suffers.
    ForgottenLegion likes this.
  7. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,286

    It's not just confined to Americans though.
  8. OcelotRex

    OcelotRex TS Guru Posts: 550   +299

    Many people have come to this analogy but I think it's more apt to compare it to the "estimated mileage" indicator as the OS will still have the percent battery remaining.
    EEatGDL and MonsterZero like this.
  9. Teko03

    Teko03 TS Evangelist Posts: 578   +298

    Geez, I swear there's some one on the inside intentionally destroying Apple...everything they do makes you question them more.
    ForgottenLegion likes this.
  10. MonsterZero

    MonsterZero TS Evangelist Posts: 570   +327

    In other news - Every other laptop manufacturer running the latest Intel chips seem to have no issues with battery performance. Story at eleven.
    ForgottenLegion, Greg S and MoeJoe like this.
  11. MoeJoe

    MoeJoe Banned Posts: 837   +441

    L M A O
    ForgottenLegion likes this.
  12. squirrle

    squirrle TS Rookie

    It's been coming. When Steve Jobs left the company in the 90's, the powers that be at the time drove the company almost to extinction. When he came back, he brought a sense of order back and they flourished (I admitt that even though I'm an Android guy). Unfortunately, that option is no longer viable so history is just repeating itself.
    ForgottenLegion likes this.
  13. mbrowne5061

    mbrowne5061 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,238   +692

    Solution: find Steve Jobs reincarnation, and put them in charge of the company. They would have just turned 5, so it will obviously be a step-up management-wise.
    ForgottenLegion and BlueDrake like this.
  14. MarkHughes

    MarkHughes TS Addict Posts: 183   +94

    At this point, The random direction of a child might be just what they need... They couldn't do much worse.
    ForgottenLegion likes this.
  15. MarkHughes

    MarkHughes TS Addict Posts: 183   +94

    True, Though most of my cars are to old to have such fancy things :)
  16. seefizzle

    seefizzle TS Evangelist Posts: 419   +290

    My car doesn't get as good gas mileage as my previous car. Ford: We're removing the gas gauge from your car.
    MonsterZero likes this.
  17. Wytefang

    Wytefang TS Enthusiast Posts: 42   +16

    Seems par for the course for a Liberal nutjob company like Apple. Lie to hide your failings.
    Greg S likes this.
  18. seefizzle

    seefizzle TS Evangelist Posts: 419   +290

    Jesus christ. This is not a left or right issue.
    MonsterZero, Phr3d and mbrowne5061 like this.
  19. Theinsanegamer

    Theinsanegamer TS Evangelist Posts: 1,578   +1,790

    Agreed. Jobs would have had somebody's head for this. Although I doubt the new macbook would have even released under jobs. Removing the USB A and magsafe ports was the second dumbest thing they could do, with first place being removing the headphone jack from a phone (oh wait a minute...).

    Apple is going from a botique manufacturer that satisfies creative niches to a hip company relying on fashion trends. Ever since jobs dies, apple has been moving away from creative works, power users, and quality machines.
  20. Phr3d

    Phr3d TS Guru Posts: 404   +86

    You were being overly kind, as a member of an early team, I decided to fix that for you, lol.
  21. BrianMontanye

    BrianMontanye TS Booster Posts: 81   +53

    Typical, hide the problem, then blame it on Intel. /golfclap
  22. Mc128k

    Mc128k TS Enthusiast Posts: 31   +6

    Easy to think, very far from reality. They are simply switching business goals. Macs are not anymore just for typographies and graphic artists.
    Magsafe was a hassle. USB-C is a better standard, get used to it, or go back to PCs which still have serial I/O ports. Or ADB.
  23. Daithi

    Daithi TS Booster Posts: 85   +97

    In fairness, there are few things more useless than the battery time remaining indicator in Windows as well. Except maybe explorer's guestimations for file transfer times.
  24. Mc128k

    Mc128k TS Enthusiast Posts: 31   +6

    Would you prefer to have a mildly accurate estimate or no estimate at all? Even the battery percentage is correlated to how much time is left, the only thing is that the user doesn't know how much the computer is consuming power (activity monitor does it though). Removing the "time remaining" is like removing the battery meter, just worse because the normal user doesn't have a clue about how much the mac has to live. Apple should think about an algorithm that predicts heuristically the "normal" computer usage and then creates a duration based on that. Instant power consumption is not enough meaningful anymore.
    BrianMontanye likes this.
  25. BrianMontanye

    BrianMontanye TS Booster Posts: 81   +53

    Exactly, you hit that right on the head. Removing it completely seems so counterproductive. Apple, instead of looking like a tool, use the big brains of the folks you employ and create a better one.

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