Google Chrome 86 JavaScript timer wake up can extend battery performance

Author at TechGenyz Google

Google’s DevTools’ October installation of Chrome 86 aims at securing and extending battery life by automating Javascript timer wake up. In a recent experiment with a prototype, Google observed that unnecessary background tabs often tend to feed on battery power.

The results were released by Chromium for the public forum entitled as ‘Throttling Javascript Timer To Reduce Battery Usage in Background Tabs

The result revealed how the developers’ intent for their use in analytics tend to damage the battery life. The only remedial step to this was to reduce the number of Javascript wakeup timers for the background tabs that could cause those unwanted opened pages from the background to freeze without causing any disruption on the foreground tab where the user usually tends to work.

We used Devtools to inspect the work done by popular sites in the background. We found that a lot of work was done from JavaScript timers. Furthermore, we found that the work done from these JavaScript timers was often not valuable to the user when the page was backgrounded (e.g. checking if scroll position changed, reporting logs, analyzing interactions with ads) – Team Chromium.

Users could benefit from this new development which helped in extending the battery life by 36 minutes. Thus the earlier format which was limited to one wakeup per second has been substituted by one minute. The Chromium team confirmed, “At the median, throttling JavaScript timers aggressively extends the battery life by almost two hours (28%) for a user with many background tabs, when the foreground tab is about: blank.”

Google will also permit the flexibility for the system admins to disable this feature through its system policy. However, this policy comes with an extension of one year only. The feature will emerge for Google Chrome for Windows, Mac, Android, Linux as well as Chrome OS.

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