Google recently announced new Energy Saver and Memory Saver features for the Chrome browser, making them available to users a few days ago. The two features should reduce Chrome’s annoying habit of consuming lots of resources, and improve the overall browsing experience. The update was especially exciting for laptops because it should reduce energy consumption and battery depletion. But Google on Tuesday announced new Chrome improvements that are specific to Apple’s MacBook lineup, and they’re aimed at improving battery life while using the browser.
The new features Google just introduced go beyond the Energy Saver and Memory Saver settings available to all Chrome users. Google went under the hood to change how the Chrome browser works on MacBooks. That means you don’t have to do anything to enjoy better battery life while using Chrome.
According to Google, the latest release of Chrome will let you watch YouTube for 18 hours on a 2022 13-inch MacBook Pro with an M2 chip. Or you can browse the web for up to 17 hours on the same configuration. Furthermore, enabling the Energy Saver feature gets you an additional 30 minutes of web browsing.
Google doesn’t say how long the same MacBook would have lasted running the previous version of Chrome. That means it’s unclear how significant the new updates are.
While Google only provides specifics for the M2 MacBook Pro model, it says that older models should see performance gains as well.
Furthermore, Google says it streamlined data structures and eliminated unnecessary redraws:
We navigated on real-world sites with a bot and identified Document Object Model (DOM) change patterns that don’t affect pixels on the screen. We modified Chrome to detect those early and bypass the unnecessary style, layout, paint, raster, and GPU steps. We implemented similar optimizations for changes to the Chrome UI.
What matters at the end of the day is having Chrome run smoothly on Mac without hogging resources and starting up the fans. You’ll need Chrome 110.0.5481.100 to get the new features and see whether they improve your MacBook’s battery life.