The fine art of browser vendors touting their respective browsers while simultaneously deriding competing ones has been reduced to a very banal affair of late, with most vendors simply concentrating on browsing speeds and HTML5-related enhancements. Does even a single browser vendor not possess the will and imagination necessary to break this trend? Apparently, Microsoft has done just that by comparing IE9’s power consumption habits with that of other major browsers, including Safari 5, Opera 11, Chrome 10, and Firefox 4.
According to Microsoft, the tests were conducted using some of the hardware from what it dubbed “one of the worlds most advanced PC power testing environments.” It observed power consumption patterns of the concerned browsers across different test scenarios.
“By using an instrumented PC we’re able to measure the power usage of each PC component, including CPU, GPU, GMCH, Memory, Uncore, Hard Disk, Network, USB and many others,” the company wrote on Internet Explorer’s official blog. “This is a more reliable approach than measuring overall system power consumption or battery durations which both have higher variance.”
The final test results show the impact the five browsers had on the battery life of a laptop with a standard 56 Watt hour battery. IE9 emerged victorious in the end by consuming the least amount of power, followed closely by Firefox 4, with the remaining browsers trailing far behind.