AMD: Notebook Battery Life Claims are Bogus


AMD isn't happy with the way some battery claims are made, saying the reliance on a test called MobileMark 2007 doesn't yield an accurate indicator of what to expect. The problem, says Patrick Moorhead, a vice president for marketing at AMD, is that the parameters for the test include dimming the screen the just 20 percent brightness, turning off WiFi, and making sure no music, video, games, or webpages are running. Not only is the test flawed, says Moorhead, but it also favors Intel.

"Intel is advantaged in this environment because they have optimized their architecture to have bettery battery life when the computer isn't doing anything," Moorhead said .

Intel shrugged off AMD's complaint, saying if the No. 2 chip maker is so passionate about the subject, it would "encourage them to bring any new proposals or edits to the nonprofit industry consortium called BAPCo."

But is AMD out of line? Not likely. In the June issue of Maximum PC, Editor-in-Chief Will Smith discussed the topic in his Ed Word titled "Notebook Battery Life is a Trap."

"You'd think testing battery life would be straightforward, but benchmark results rarely jibe with real-world results -- in part, because there are an infinite number of potential workloads (each tapping power differently), and battery life decays over time," Smith wrote.

AMD warns that either the industry starts better regulating itself, or there's a high possibility of a consumer filing a lawsuit or the FTC stepping in.

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