We’ve always advised people to take laptop battery life claims with a fistful of salt. So much depends on how you use your laptop that the claimed battery life is really just a best-case guess. Sure, if you’re the ideal user who watches one low-res video with the screen turned off and all apps closed in low power mode, you might hit the claims. For everyone else, some creative license will be needed.
But as a recent round of testing shows, one manufacturer does hit the claims, and it will absolutely not surprise you which company that is.
A test by British magazine Which? compares claimed battery life to the actual battery life seen during tests, which included a standard mix of web browsing and video watching. It found that laptops tested from Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo and Toshiba consistently came in below the stated battery life using Which‘s tests. The MacBook Pro, on the other hand, averaged 12 hours of battery life in the test, even though Apple only claims 10 hours.
Of course, battery testing is subjective, and depends on all kinds of things like what websites and videos are used, the brightness screens are set at, or even deep settings within the laptop. Given the results, it is possible that the choice of website, video codec or browser greatly favored macOS rather than Windows, hence the Mac-favorable results.
But even if you assume that the testing wasn’t properly scientific, the results would still seem to show that the MacBook has much better battery life than its Windows peers, and that Apple is generally more honest with its battery life estimates.