Laptop battery life…the great lie

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I read an article today on Newsweek about laptop battery life. Basically the battery makers have been “stretching the truth” about battery life. The are testing under very (and I mean very) unrealistic circumstances.  Image using your laptop with the back-light on the display at it’s lowest. You would not be able to see…well that is one of the ways they test the battery. Below is a snippet of the story…you can read the rest at Newsweek.

Imagine if automakers got together and started measuring the gas mileage of new cars with a cool test of their own making-one in which the cars were rolling downhill with their engines idling. Suddenly you’d have some pretty amazing claims: Why, that three-ton SUV gets 300 miles per gallon! This subcompact gets 500! In tiny print at the bottom of the window sticker you’d find a disclaimer saying that, well, um, you know, your mileage may vary.

Crazy, right? Yet that’s more or less what’s happening with laptop computers and their battery lives. Right now, I’m looking at a Best Buy flier touting a $599 Dell laptop that gets “up to 5 hours and 40 minutes of battery life.” Down in the fine print comes a disclaimer explaining that “battery life will vary” based on a bunch of factors. Translation: you ain’t gonna get five hours and 40 minutes, bub. Not ever. Not even close.

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