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  1. artar94

    Battery Mode v3.8.9.122

    Battery Mode v3.8.9.122 Version: 3.8.9.122 Official site: en.bmode.tarcode.ru Interface language: English, Spanish (by gatomalaco), French (by jordan4x), Brazilian Portuguese (by Igor Ruckert), Hungarian (by László Bencsik), Polish (by Janko Muzykant), Japanese (by a1678991) Russian, Ukrainian (by Yurii Petrashko aka YuriPet) License: Freeware System requirements: XP/Vista/7/8/8.1/10 Windows (32-bit & 64-bit) Description: Replaces Windows default battery indicator to a more powerful and useful one. It provides backlight control, easy power scheme selection, detailed battery information and a lot of handy features for customization. Advanced Power Scheme Selection Battery Mode allows you to change current power scheme right from the battery popup window. Unlike the standard popup in Windows 7-8.1, Battery Mode provides a full list of power schemes available on your system. You can setup a schedule to change power scheme automatically. Comfortable Backlight Control You can use Battery Mode to control backlight on both internal and external monitors. Check the «Fixed screen brightness» option to prevent backlight level from changing when attaching power supply or changing power scheme. Brightness icon near backlight slider allows you to enable or disable «Adaptive brightness» (if your device support it). Hotkeys for Power Users Battery Mode provides a customizable hotkey to change a power scheme without opening it's window. You can use NextScheme.exe utility to switch power scheme or control backlight in you scripts. Changelog: Added new scheduler actions: Shut down, Restart, Sleep, Hibernate, Turn off screen, Turn on screen Improved HiDPI support Fixed a bug in brightness slider Update Japanese localization Links: Download 32-bit Download 64-bit Tip: Don't forget to adjust tray icon's position after installation Comments: I am an author of Battery Mode. If you have any questions or suggestions, please don't hesitate to contact me.
  2. Carbon nanotubes used to develop clothing that can double as batteries Summary: Engineers are creating clothing that can charge your cell phone. What makes this possible are the unique properties of carbon nanotubes: a large surface area that is strong, conductive and heat-resistant. Engineers with the University of Cincinnati are leveraging a partnership with Wright-Patterson Air Force Base to create clothing that can charge your cell phone. Move over, Iron Man. What makes this possible are the unique properties of carbon nanotubes: a large surface area that is strong, conductive and heat-resistant. UC's College of Engineering and Applied Science has a five-year agreement with the Air Force Research Laboratory to conduct research that can enhance military technology applications. UC professor Vesselin Shanov co-directs UC's Nanoworld Laboratories with research partner and UC professor Mark Schulz. Together, they harness their expertise in electrical, chemical and mechanical engineering to craft "smart" materials that can power electronics. "The major challenge is translating these beautiful properties to take advantage of their strength, conductivity and heat resistance," Shanov said. Schulz said manufacturing is at the cusp of a carbon renaissance. Carbon nanotubes will replace copper wire in cars and planes to reduce weight and improve fuel efficiency. Carbon will filter our water and tell us more about our lives and bodies through new biometric sensors. Carbon will replace polyester and other synthetic fibers. And since carbon nanotubes are the blackest objects found on Earth, absorbing 99.9 percent of all visible light, you might say carbon is the new black. "In the past, metals dominated manufacturing goods," Schulz said. "But I think carbon is going to replace metals in a lot of applications. "There's going to be a new carbon era -- a carbon revolution," Schulz said. UC's Nanoworld Lab directs the collective work of 30 graduate and undergraduate students. One of them, UC research associate Sathya Narayan Kanakaraj, co-authored a study examining ways to improve the tensile strength of dry-spun carbon nanotube fiber. His results were published in June in the journal Materials Research Success. Graduate student Mark Haase, spent the past year exploring applications for carbon nanotubes at the Air Force Research Lab of Wright-Patterson. Through the partnership, UC students use the Air Force Lab's sophisticated equipment, including X-ray computer tomography, to analyze samples. Haase has been using the Air Force equipment to help his classmates with their projects as well. "This pushes us to work in groups and to specialize. These are the same dynamics we see in corporate research and industry," Haase said. "Engineering is a group activity these days so we can take advantage of that." UC researchers "grow" nanotubes on quarter-sized silicon wafers under heat in a vacuum chamber through a process called chemical vapor deposition. "Each particle has a nucleation point. Colloquially, we can call it a seed," Haase said. "Our carbon-containing gas is introduced into the reactor. When the carbon gas interacts with our 'seed,' it breaks down and re-forms on the surface. We let it grow until it reaches the size we want," he said. Researchers can use almost any carbon, from alcohol to methane. "I remember one group showed off by using Girl Scout cookies. If it contains carbon, you can turn it into a nanotube," Haase said. UC's Nanoworld Lab set a world record in 2007 by growing a nanotube that stretched nearly 2 centimeters, the longest carbon nanotube array produced in a lab at the time. Today's labs can create nanotubes that are many times longer. UC researchers stretch the little fibrous square over an industrial spool in the lab. Suddenly, this tiny sheet of carbon becomes a spun thread that resembles spider's silk that can be woven into textiles. "It's exactly like a textile," Shanov said. "We can assemble them like a machine thread and use them in applications ranging from sensors to track heavy metals in water or energy storage devices, including super capacitors and batteries." For the military, this could mean replacing heavy batteries that charge the growing number of electronics that make up a soldier's loadout: lights, night-vision and communications gear. "As much as one-third of the weight they carry is just batteries to power all of their equipment," Haase said. "So even if we can shave a little off that, it's a big advantage for them in the field." Medical researchers are investigating how carbon nanotubes can help deliver targeted doses of medicine. "On the outside, you can add a protein molecule. Cells will read that and say, 'I want to eat that.' So we can deliver medicine to support healthy cells, to restore sick cells or even to kill cancer cells," Haase said. But first researchers want to make sure that carbon nanotubes are nontoxic. "That's why they've been moving slowly," Haase said. "Research has found that in high or acute exposure, carbon nanotubes can cause lung damage similar to asbestos. The last thing we want to do is cure one cancer only to find it gives you a different one." Preliminary results have been promising. Don't look for carbon nanotube fashions on Parisian catwalks anytime soon. The costs are too prohibitive. "We're working with clients who care more about performance than cost. But once we perfect synthesis, scale goes up considerably and costs should drop accordingly," Haase said. "Then we'll see carbon nanotubes spread to many, many more applications." For now, UC's lab can produce about 50 yards of carbon nanotube thread at a time for its research. "Most large-scale textile machines need miles of thread," Haase said. "We'll get there." Until then, mass production remains one of the bigger unresolved problems for carbon nanotube technology, said Benji Maruyama, who leads the Materials and Manufacturing Directorate at the Air Force Research Laboratory. "There is still a lot of work to be done in scaling up the process. Pulling a carbon nanotube fiber off a silicon disk is good for lab-scale research but not for making an airplane wing or flight suit," Maruyama said. "The only thing holding us back is cracking the code on making carbon nanotubes at scale," he said. Maruyama is trying to solve that problem with a series of experiments he is conducting using an autonomous research robot called ARES. The robot designs and conducts experiments with carbon nanotubes, analyzes the results and then uses that data and artificial intelligence to redefine parameters for the next experiment. In this way, it can conduct 100 times as many experiments in the same time as human researchers, he said. "The big advantage of carbon nanotubes is there's no shortage of materials. It just requires a metal catalyst -- we use iron and nickel -- and carbon. It's not scarce," Maruyama said. "So when we're talking about making millions of tons per year of carbon nanotubes, we're not making millions of tons of something rare." The ultimate goal is to convert UC's academic research into solutions to real problems, Shanov said. "We have the luxury in academia to explore different applications," Shanov said. "Not all of them may see the market. But even if 10 percent hit, it would be a great success." < Here >
  3. Towards the end of last year, some evidence came to light claiming that Apple may have been slowing down older models of the iPhone, according to Geekbench results. The following day, Apple confirmed that it had released "a feature" for the iPhone 6, 6s, and SE in order to "smooth out the instantaneous peaks only when needed to prevent the device from unexpectedly shutting down" in instances where a high amount of current was demanded. It then came as no surprise that the company ended up being sued and soon offered discounted battery replacements to try and manage the fallout. While customers could now obtain battery replacements for the iPhone 6 or later for $29 instead of the usual $79 until the end of 2018, this was of no consolation for customers who had already paid for out-of-warranty before the offer's availability. Now, it seems that Apple is attempting to make amends for this situation. According to a support document spotted on the Apple website, customers will receive a $50 refund if they had a battery replacement undertaken for their devices at an Apple authorized service location. The Cupertino giant began notifying eligible customers yesterday, an exercise that will continue until July 27, 2018, with advice on how to avail themselves of the reimbursement. However, customers who miss out on the communication and believe they are entitled to the partial refund can contact Apple directly by the end of this year. The news comes after Apple added the ability to check the battery health of an iPhone in iOS 11.3almost two months ago, enabling device owners to be better informed about device throttling due to a diminishing charge capacity. Source
  4. Does your smartphone’s battery drains faster? Or you want your phone’s power to last longer? Well, I think it’s every person’s wish that their phone’s battery lasts longer so that they don’t need to charge it frequently and they can play games, watch movies, surf internet etc. without any trouble. But what is the main reason behind this quick drainage of battery? If your battery power is good but still it doesn’t last longer then the problem might not be with the battery but with your phone and the apps installed in it. Sometimes a lot of processes keep running in the background which consume a lot of battery. And some of the apps also tend to consume more battery power. Due to this, the phone’s battery drains faster. So, for resolving this problem you need to have an application which can improve the level of your phone’s battery life. There are many such applications and today I’m going to review one of the best such applications which can help you to extend the battery life of your smartphone and that application if Power battery – battery saver. Power Battery – Battery Saver app In-depth Review Power Battery- Battery saver application is an Android app developed by LionMobi. The app is designed such that it helps to prevent quick drainage of the phone’s battery. It lets you know that which apps are consuming excessive power so that you can stop them. The app also provides an estimate of how long your smartphone battery will last. It keeps checking your phone for the points of battery leak and tries to repair them. There are many other features of this app which are explained below. Interface Starting with the interface of Power battery- battery saver application, the app provides you a clean and systematic interface. All the main features are displayed in a perfect manner so that it doesn’t make it difficult to find any button or feature. When you first launch the app, you will see many panels with different information and functions. The color combination is also attractive and due to which its easily highlights all its control button and links. You need to scroll downwards for accessing all its functions. Also, there are controls such as WiFi, brightness, ringtone, data, etc. available in the app itself, so that you can quickly access these whenever required to enable or disable a particular function just to save more battery. Battery life estimation Now you can easily know how long will your battery will last in different scenarios. Power battery- battery saver app provides you a nearly accurate battery life estimation using special statistics algorithm for different situations. It tells you the hours, the battery will last if you use WiFi, Bluetooth, play games, etc. In our test, the app did a great job. The battery estimation was almost accurate. We tested the app in different mobiles and the results were quite good, the battery lasted for the hours which power battery application estimated. Power saving and protection The main cause of excessive battery draining is power-draining apps which cause your phone to use more and more power resulting in high battery drainage. But now, as power battery-battery saver app is all you need to have to stop all those power-draining applications which run in the background continuously. The power protection is one of the best features provided by this application. All you need to do for activating this tool is just tapping the Power protection option available at the home screen and rest of the work will be done by the app automatically, the app will show you a detailed list of the apps which are consuming more battery and then you can disable those apps from the background. This will eventually increase the battery life. Don’t worry the app will not close important apps that you are using. It will give you all the sources of battery drain and you can keep or close the app yourself. Memory management To speed up your phone for a better performance, it is quite necessary to clean the memory of your phone. Well, you don ‘t need any other app for the same as Power battery – battery saver app offers you the same. You can optimize the speed of your device just by tapping the optimize button given at the top os the screen of the app. Custom power safe The app provides a power save mode that you can activate according to your need. Besides you can even customize your own mode for the custom setting. The app offers you 4 modes of power saver viz. prolong, general, sleep and default. Each mode has its own setting such as if you activate prolong mode, the brightness will become 10%, screen timeout 15s, Wifi will be off, auto sync will be off and so on. And whenever you activate any of the modes all the settings for that mode will be applied immediately. Displays battery information Now you don’t have to search over the internet to get the information of your battery or peeling off the back cover to do the same. Power battery- battery saver application displays every detail of your battery such as health status, temperature, current power, full power voltage etc. You can even get the information about current day’s battery usage along with app name and the amount of power used by that app as you can see the below image. Some other features Charge This feature makes the charging process quicker. While charging your phone, the app blocks all the excessive power consumption apps which obviously boosts the charging and makes your phone get fully charged quickly. Also, the app shows you the charging record of 30-days. Battery skin This feature is just for changing the graphics. You can change the battery icon using battery skin option. Just tap on the app icon present at the top left corner of the main screen, it will show up the menu items from where you need to select battery skin. Now you can choose any of the icons of your choice. Personal community The personal community is a social interact action platform where your see the real time power consumption, environment emission reduction, newsletter etc. I found it quite interesting as we can compete with our friends that who is greener. Pros Save battery consumption. easy to use. speed up the mobile’s performance. Different saver modes. Accurate battery life free to download cons none Download Power Battery – Battery Saver Wrap up Power battery – battery saver is a free app for Android users. It performs its functions quite well. In our test, it did a great job. It extended the battery life about 60% which is quite enough. Additionally, it also helps to speed up the phone’s performance by optimizing it. Charge, personal community, battery skin, custom power saver mode etc. are some great tool provided by this app. So, I think it’s more than enough feature required in an app. You should definitely try this app. Article source
  5. Overview: The original Battery Indicator for Android has been reborn with a new name, a new look, and new features! Battery Indicator Pro is now BatteryBot Pro. BatteryBot Battery Indicator is the original battery indicator app for Android™, released in 2009 as simply "Battery Indicator." Both the free and the Pro versions have maintained a 4.5+ star rating in Google Play from the beginning. It offers two modes: the original status bar indicator and now also a desktop widget. You can use either or both, as you please. BatteryBot monitors and shows your battery charge level (percent) as an icon in your status bar, with how much time you have left, temperature, health, voltage, and time since plugged / unplugged in the notification area. It now also has a 1x1 app widget. The Pro version also has user-configurable alarms, logs, mA current information, and a large (4x1) widget. Give it a try -- it's an excellent and complete solution to your battery needs. Features: • No ads (why would you want a battery app with ads?) • Exact battery level in the task bar • Or hide the task bar icon, keeping notification in tray — or turn notification off completely and just use widgets • Multiple icon set options • Automatic time-remaining estimates based on recent usage • Small (1x1) circle desktop widget • Very lightweight (please email me if you think otherwise, and I'll help you figure out what's wrong — I promise this app will not drain your battery!) • Well-tested and supported on all major versions of Android (4.1 through 8.0; Jelly Bean through Oreo) and form factors (small phones, medium phones, large phones, 7-inch tablets, 10-inch tablets). • Open source For those who want more than is offered in the free version, or for those who just like to support small, independent developers like me, the Pro version remains lightweight while packing in many useful features: Pro-only Features: • Alarms (fully charged, charge above X, charge below X, temperature above X, or health failure) • (On devices that allow it) Icon colors (including fully configurable green, amber, red, and black icons) • (On most devices) Electric current (mA / milliamp /milliampere) reading to/from battery on supported devices • Large (4x1) desktop widget • Battery logging. You can log the battery state (charge, status, voltage, temperature) and browse the logs on the phone or export to CSV. • Control the notification priority on Android 4.1+ (For example, you can set to "minimum" to hide the icon but keep the notification in the tray.) • Lots of configurability of behavior and appearance. • The charging indicator (the bolt under the number that indicates when the device is being charged) for the sets that have it is optional in the Pro version. A one-time purchase now gets you free updates for life on all your Android devices. All requested app permissions are explained on the project website. On devices running Android 6.0 or newer, permissions are requested as needed and not used otherwise. Here's the BatteryBot business model / philosophy: 1) Ads are annoying. For some apps, ads might make sense, but a system utility should not have ads. 2) The free version should be simple but useful; it shouldn't feel crippled. 3) Some people choose to purchase the Pro version because they want extra features, some because they want more customization, and many because they just want to say "thanks" for the free version and support small, independent developers like myself. Requirements: 4.1+ Whats new: 10.0.4: I'm so sorry for the frequent releases this week, folks. I'm fixing my bugfix again. This is an issue that only affects a small minority of users, but it's important to get it right. I really think I've got it this time. 10.0.3: Fix (I think) rare crash introduced in last release. 10.0.2: Performance and stability improvements. Site: https://play.google.com/ Code: store/apps/details?id=com.darshancomputing.BatteryIndicatorPro Download Share: https://uptobox.com Code: /0fkri7adects
  6. These days all the mobile devices like the smartphones, tablets or the notebook computers depend on the rechargeable Lithium-ion batteries. But there is a huge problem with these batteries – they do not last more than 2-3 years. Their charge holding capacity reduces with time even if you do not use them and the number of charge/discharge cycles are limited to less than a thousand. Actually, many of us have to buy new batteries for the smartphones in a year or two. This is why we all want to make each of the charge cycle last as long as possible. The free Kaspersky Battery Life app for Android can help you do exactly just that. “Kaspersky Battery Life : Saver and Booster” app can extend your battery life by stopping the apps that are running in the background and consuming the battery without any productive results. When you launch the app in your smartphone, it will show you a list of all the apps that are running in the background. You can tap on the big button to close all these apps and improve the battery life. After closing the apps, it displays how many minutes were gained by closing these apps. Some of the apps re-spawn as soon as they are closed. But in the settings of Kaspersky Battery Life, you can choose to terminate such restarting apps. Other settings are to show notifications on the lockscreen about too many apps running or when the apps are draining your battery really fast, and so on. It also displays some information about how this app works – by analyzing your battery over several charge/discharge cycles and then reducing the battery drain using this analysis. Conclusion: Kasperksy Battery Life app for Android is intended to boost the performance and the life of your phone’s battery. It will work better when it has analyzed your battery over a number of charge and discharge periods. You can get the Kasperksy Battery Life app for Android from https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.kaspersky.batterysaver&hl=en. Article source
  7. A team of eleven scientists from UCLA and the University of Connecticut has created a new energy-storing device that can draw electrical power from the human body. What researchers created is a biological supercapacitor, a protein-based battery-like device that extracts energy from the human body and then releases it inside an electrical circuit — the implantable medical device. Supercapacitor fueled by ions in blood, serum, urine According to a research paper published earlier this month, the supercapacitor is made up by a device called a "harvester" that operates by using the body's heat and movements to extract electrical charges from ions found in human body fluids, such as blood, serum, or urine. As electrodes, the harvester uses a carbon nanomaterial called graphene, layered with modified human proteins. The electrodes collect energy from the human body, relay it to the harvester, which then stores it for later use. Because graphene sheets can be drawn in sheets as thin as a few atoms, this allows for the creation of utra-thin supercapacitors that could be used as alternatives to classic batteries. For example, the bio-friendly supercapacitors researchers created are thinner than a human hair, and are also flexible, moving and twisting with the human body. Supercapacitors don't use toxic metals Another advantage is that they're made of bio-friendly materials, like graphene, which is a form of carbon, one of the core chemical elements that make up the human body. Current implantable medical devices operate on classic batteries, inflexible, and built with many toxic materials that can poison or kill its carrier. The device they created is a supercapacitor, which is a term used to describe high-performance electrochemical capacitors (ECs), a battery-like device that can store energy at much higher power density than classic batteries. Compared to batteries, supercapacitors also have faster charge-discharge rates, lower internal resistance, higher power density, better cycling stability, and the ability to use external fluids as electrolytes. Researchers argue that implantable medical devices using their supercapacitor could last a lifetime, and remove the need for patients to go through operations at regular periods to replace batteries, one of the main causes of complications with implantable medical devices. Currently, the supercapacitor looks primed to be deployed with pacemakers, but researchers hope their technology could be used with other devices that stimulate other organs, such as the brain, the stomach, or the bladder. More details are available in the research paper entitled Ultrathin Graphene – Protein Supercapacitors for Miniaturized Bioelectronics. Source
  8. It’s no secret now that some Android apps are killing your battery. These apps keep working in the background all the time, even when you aren’t using them. They’re pinging the internet and using motion sensors, all of it sucking the battery’s life. While several apps do this, some are far worse than others. The biggest leeches are often some of the most popular apps. We can also now identify these apps thanks to research conducted by mobile carriers, antivirus makers Avast and AVG, and tech enthusiasts. Here are the worst apps that drain battery on Android devices. 1. Snapchat Bad news, Snapchat users. This is the most battery-hogging social media app according to every survey out there. Snapchat was ranked #4 in Avast’s list and #2 in AVG’s list. Several users on the XDA Developers forum mentioned a significant battery boost after uninstalling Snapchat. What You Can Do Enable Travel Mode, one of the new Snapchat features you need to know about. Travel Mode prevents Snapchat from pre-loading images and videos in your feed. You’ll find it in the app’s settings. You should also disable location tracking, a major battery leech. But be warned, this also disables geofilters, one of Snapchat’s cool new features. Alternatives to Snapchat Every social network seems to be doing what Snapchat does, copying filters, masks, “stories”, and so on. You might want to try Instagram Stories instead of Snapchat. 2. Tinder Tinder boosts your social life, but it also sucks the life out of your battery. The app is all about finding people who are around you, so it constantly tracks your location and refreshes the data based on that. What You Can Do Go from an “always active” Tinder user to a more passive one. Switch off the app’s background refresh so it stops working silently when you aren’t even looking at it. You might also want to disable all notifications while you’re at it. This combination leads to better battery performance, according to several user reports. And when you can, use Tinder Online through desktop browsers. Alternatives to Tinder For an app like Tinder, you need to find an alternative that has a similar user base and the same mentality. OkCupid and Match.com are among the most popular apps for online dating. However, all these apps use similar resources if you’re an “always active” user type, so stick with Tinder and changing the settings. 3. BBC News (or Any News App) News apps are important to stay updated, but this comes at the cost of battery life. Apps for BBC News, NYTimes, NDTV, CNN, and others constantly refresh in the background. Thankfully, this is the easiest to fix. What You Can Do Ditch the apps. Uninstall any news app you have. It offers nothing substantially more than their mobile site. So simply turn the mobile web site into a Chrome-based app. It’s easy, and it takes less space, data, and battery. Alternatives to News Apps For timely updates, you might want to ditch apps altogether and use Twitter as your news source. All the major news media houses are active on it. 4. Microsoft Outlook This is a surprising contender on the battery hogs list. Microsoft makes some great Android apps, and the Outlook email app has been winning people over. Unfortunately, it was #10 in Avast’s list, so it might be time to reconsider. What You Can Do Email apps would be useless if they didn’t refresh in the background. While one can make a case to disable email notifications, you’re better off simply changing to a different app. Alternatives to Microsoft Outlook There is no shortage of email apps on the Play Store, so take your pick. Personally, I would recommend Inbox by Gmail, the productivity-email hybrid. As a full-time user and someone who gets hundreds of emails every day, I can vouch for its battery efficiency. Download — Inbox by Gmail for Android (Free) 5. Facebook and Messenger The biggest social network in the world is also one of the biggest battery drainers. The Facebook app, and its sister app Messenger, constantly rank high in all these reports. It’s logical when you consider how many Android permissions Facebook asks for. What You Can Do Remove the main apps and install Facebook Lite and Messenger Lite, the company’s lightweight alternatives. Both apps use less data, resources, and battery. You’ll miss a few functions, like video calling, but the overall experience is excellent. Alternatives to Facebook Let’s face it, there is no social network that is a real alternative to Facebook. The best you can do is not to use any of its apps, and instead use the Facebook mobile web site instead. Download — Facebook Lite for Android (Free) Download — Messenger Lite for Android (Free) 6. Amazon Shopping If you have the Amazon Shopping app installed on your phone, get rid of it right now. Amazon has plenty of deals and offers, but the app is not well optimized for Android, according to Android Pit. The result is that it drains battery as the app constantly pings servers in the background to get you the latest deals. What You Can Do The Amazon Shopping app is hardly any different from the Amazon mobile web site. Uninstall the app and do all your shopping from a browser instead. Or browse clutter-free Amazon sites on desktops. Alternatives to Amazon Shopping No online store really compares to Amazon, so don’t bother looking for alternatives. 7. Samsung’s Default Apps Android has a bloatware problem, and it’s most evident with Samsung. Samsung devices come preinstalled with a whole bunch of their proprietary apps. You probably don’t use many of these, but they are working in the background, using up precious battery. The three biggest culprits are Samsung Link (or AllShare), Beaming Service for Samsung, and WatchON. What You Can Do Unless you root the Android device, you can’t remove these preinstalled apps. The next best thing is to disable them. Go to Settings > Applications > Applications Manager > All and tap on the Samsung Link app. Uncheck the “Show notifications” box, which is ticked by default. Then tap Clear Data, followed by tapping Disable. Do this for all the Samsung apps you don’t use. Alternatives to Samsung’s Default Apps Several of the preinstalled Samsung apps are redundant, so install better alternatives from the Play Store. For example, instead of the S-Voice app, you can use Google Assistant. 8. musical.ly This relatively-new social network for aspiring music stars has been growing in popularity and taking its slice of battery life with it. Musical.ly is filling the void left by Vine, but it isn’t the background process that kills battery here. When you run the app, it uses a tremendous amount of hardware resources and is a data hog as well. The result is that it consumes far more battery than the average app. What You Can Do Like Facebook and Messenger, you can download musical.ly lite for Android. This lightweight version has most of the features of the main app, but uses less resources and data. Alternatives to musical.ly This isn’t the first app of its kind. You can try out Dubsmash for a similar experience. Download — musical.ly lite for Android (Free) Download — Dubsmash for Android (Free) 9. YouTube, Netflix, and Other Streaming Apps If you prefer to stream all your movies and music, then it’s only natural that those apps will use a lot of battery. After all, they’re using either Wi-Fi or data, and in the case of video streaming, your screen is also on all the time. What You Can Do There’s not much you can do here, since the experience requires battery usage. The best you can hope to achieve is through small tricks. For example, manually set the screen brightness to the lowest for comfortable viewing when streaming videos, or use wired headphones instead of Bluetooth ones. Alternatives to Streaming Apps There aren’t any real alternatives to streaming apps except the new YouTube Go for Android. It’s more battery-efficient and reduces data usage too. Download — YouTube Go for Android (Free) 10. LionMobi Power Battery and CleanMaster Ironically, battery optimizers and system cleaners are some of the biggest battery culprits. Avast found LionMobi’s Power Battery series to be among the top 10 guzzlers. AVG has similarly warned users about the popular Clean Master. What You Can Do It’s simple, actually. Stop looking for these magical optimization cures and uninstall these popular apps. Alternatives for Battery Optimization The only battery optimization app we can recommend is Greenify. It stops apps from running in the background until you actually use the app yourself. It’s just one of our excellent tips to make Android faster. Download — Greenify for Android (Free) How Is Your Battery Life? Android makers are increasing battery sizes in phones. Now you can get Android devices with batteries as large as 5000 mAh. Article source
  9. Here we go again! With the launch of the Windows 10 Creators Update and Edge 40 (EdgeHTML 15), Microsoft has released a new battery usage test that, naturally, trashes the company's competition. This new test shows that Edge uses less power than both Chrome 57 and Firefox 52, and is bound to draw a response from its competition, especially Google, who doesn't like it when Microsoft takes a jab at Chrome's efficiency. Welcome to the battery usage wars! The same thing happened last year, in June, when a similar test showcasing Edge's longer battery life was met with responses from both Google and Opera. Not giving up on its claims, Microsoft re-ran the test in September, also publishing the testing procedure on GitHub, with the release of BrowserEfficiencyTest, a Selenium WebDriver that automates common user browsing operations, such as looking through a Facebook feed, going through some emails, and browsing the news. The September test was done on clean Windows 10 Anniversary Update (build 14393.105) version, while the new test, performed this month, was run on three identical Surface Book laptops running Windows 10 Creator's Update (build 15063). CPU, GPU, and Wi-Fi antenna power consumption were measured using onboard Maxim chips and the Windows Performance Recorder. Below are the hardware and software specifications of the testing rig: OS and browser versions OS Windows 10 Pro 15063.0 Microsoft Edge Microsoft Edge 40.15063.0.0 Chrome Google Chrome 57.0.2987.133 (64-bit) Firefox Firefox 52.0.1 (32-bit) Hardware Processor i5-6300U @ 2.4GHz 2.5GHz Memory 8G Graphics Intel HD Graphics 520 Two different types of tests were performed until a latpop's fully-charged battery gave out. The first test measured normal browsing performance and the second ran a looped Vimeo fullscreen video. For each browser, a minimum of 16 iterations were recorded per test, and the average between all iterations reported. Unlike the September tests [1, 2], Opera wasn't included. Normal browsing performance test In the normal browsing performance test, Microsoft claims Edge used 31% less power than Chrome 57, and 44% less power than Firefox 52. Video performance test In the second test, Edge played this Vimeo video for 751 minutes (12:31:08), while Chrome lasted 557 minutes (9:17:03) and Firefox for only 424 minutes (7:04:19). That's a whopping three hours over Chrome. Of course, all these tests need to be taken with a grain of salt. When one of the participants runs these tests and comes on top, it's kind of hard to take them seriously. Nonetheless, it's always fun to see multi-billion dollar businesses taking jabs at each other's products, like that time when Microsoft claimed in a now-deleted tweet that Edge is the first and only browser to feature tab previews, only to be mocked by Opera and Vivaldi, both which featured tab previews for years. Source
  10. A year-long study revealed on Friday that laptop manufacturers seriously overstate their claims on a device's battery life, sometimes by hours, not minutes. Which?, a website that provides reviews and expert advice on a various of topics, including hardware and technology, carried out the tests during the past year as part of their normal review process. Experts said they tested 8 Acer, 3 Apple, 8 Asus, 10 Dell, 12 HP, 20 Lenovo, and 6 Toshiba laptops. Each device went through two different tests three times. The first test included watching movies until the battery life died out, while the second test involved surfing the Internet via WiFi, also until the battery gave way. Results of these tests, portrayed in the infographic below, show that all but one laptop vendor overstated the average battery life for their devices. Battery life test results Besides Apple's MacBooks, who sometimes lasted longer than what Apple estimated, all laptops tested poorly. "The most optimistic laptop manufacturers are overstating their battery life by 50% or more, leaving you searching for the power cable twice as often as you’d expect," said Which?'s Jack Turner. For two decades, users have been whining about laptops not living up to vendor claims. This test shows how inaccurate those claims are to begin with. The vendors who replied to Which?'s request for comment said the Which? test result differed from their estimations because they used different tests to assess the initial presumed battery life. Source
  11. A woman traveling on a flight from Beijing, China to Melbourne, Australia suffered burns on her face and hands after her battery-powered headphones exploded. The injuries wouldn’t have been so extensive if the explosion didn’t occur while the woman was asleep. Nonetheless, she was prompt to react by pulling the headphones out of her ears and throwing them on the floor. “As I went to turn around I felt burning on my face,” the woman said. “I just grabbed my face which caused the headphones to go around my neck. “I continued to feel burning so I grabbed them off and threw them on the floor. They were sparking and had small amounts of fire. “As I went to stamp my foot on them the flight attendants were already there with a bucket of water to pour on them. They put them into the bucket at the rear of the plane.” Victim didn't suffer extensive injuries, flight reached destination According to the Australian Transportation Safety Bureau (ATSB), nobody else was injured in the explosion, and the flight reached its destination, albeit passengers had to endure the smell of melted plastic, burnt electronics and burnt hair for the rest of their trip. The ATSB says that both the battery and the cover melted and stuck to the aircraft’s floor. The headphones used classic Li-Ion batteries. The incident comes after several air transportation safety boards and airline companies across the world warned passengers not to turn on Samsung Galaxy Note 7 smartphones during flights. During 2016, several Samsung Galaxy Note 7 handsets exploded and caught fire. Samsung was eventually pushed to call back all Galaxy Note 7 devices in one of all-time's embarrassing recalls. Recent iPhone models suffered similar battery explosion issues, but Apple denied it was something that affected all iPhone models, saying they were only isolated cases. Below is the ATSB’s official advice for handling battery-powered devices on flights. Air travelers should exercise caution when working with battery-powered devices during confined spaces like aircraft. Batteries should be kept in an approved stowage, unless in use Spare batteries must be in your carry-on baggage NOT checked baggage If a passenger’s smart phone or other device has fallen into the seat gap, locate their device before moving powered seats If a passenger cannot locate their device, they should refrain from moving their seat and immediately contact a cabin crew member. Article source
  12. If you’ve ever noticed that your phone’s battery goes from 60% to 50% in a matter of minutes, only to remain on 50% for what seems like ages, it probably means the battery needs to be calibrated. Why Your Phone’s Battery Percentage Becomes Inaccurate This is a problem that occurs in most battery-powered electronics these days, so this process should work on iPhone, Android, and even tablets or laptops (almost all of which use lithium ion batteries). While it’s really not that big of a problem, it can be a bit annoying when your phone says you have 25% battery left, only to look again and see that it’s nearly dying. The reason for this is simple. Batteries naturally degrade over time, and their capacity slowly decreases. But your phone isn’t always great at measuring that—if your battery has degraded to 95% of its original capacity, your phone might still report that as 95% full, instead of 100% full (the “new normal”). Calibrating your battery can fix this. How to Calibrate Your Phone’s Battery Luckily, calibrating your smartphone’s battery is an easy task—it just takes a bit of time and patience. First, let your phone drain completely to the point where it shuts itself off. You can confirm that the battery is completely dead by trying to turn it on—you’ll usually be greeted with a dead battery icon before the phone shuts off again after a few seconds. Next, without turning it back on, plug your phone into the charger and let it charge up to 100%, leaving the phone off the entire time it’s charging. Some people suggest leaving it on the charger for an extra hour or so, just to make sure the battery gets all the juice it can, but that’s completely up to you and not extremely necessary. After that, turn your phone on and wait for it to boot up. Once it gets to the home screen, confirm that the battery meter shows 100%, then unplug it from the charger. Once unplugged, the battery is now calibrated and you can begin to use your phone again like normal. How Often Should You Calibrate Your Battery? There’s really no official rule on how often you should calibrate your phone’s battery. And technically, you don’t really need to do it at all if you don’t care how accurate the percentage is, especially if you’re vigilant about keeping the battery charged up anyway. If you want the most accurate battery stats, you’ll probably want to calibrate the battery every two to three months. Again, you can go longer if you want (I only do it every six months or so), just know that your battery percentage may be a little off. Battery Calibration Doesn’t Make the Battery Last Longer You may see other articles discussing how calibrating your battery can prolong its lifespan, or improve battery life. But long story short: it doesn’t. In fact, the best way to keep your battery healthy is to perform shallow discharges, not run it down to zero regularly—which is why you should probably only calibrate it every few months or so. However, according to Battery University, there’s no apparent harm to calibrating your phone’s battery, and it’s recommended that you do so from time to time. Article source
  13. HP Recalls More Laptop Batteries After Finding They Could Catch Fire HP expands recall program originally started in June In an announcement today, the company says that batteries that are shipped with laptops such as HP, Compaq, HP ProBook, HP ENVY, Compaq Presario, and HP Pavilion Notebook Computers sold worldwide from March 2013 through October 2016 could be affected by an issue causing them to overheat, posing a fire and burn hazard. Additionally, batteries for these models that are sold separately could also be affected, HP says. The company recommends customers to recheck their batteries even if they were originally told they were safe. “Because these batteries pose a fire and burn hazard, it is essential to recheck your battery, even if you did so previously and were informed that it was not affected. However, if you have already received a replacement battery, you are not affected by this expansion,” HP says. If you’re trying to determine whether a specific battery is affected or not, the company also has a validation program that does the whole thing automatically, but you can also check it manually. Stop using defective batteries What’s important to note, however, is that HP does not recall laptops, but batteries, so the aforementioned models are not defective, but only come with a faulty battery that can pose a risk of fire when overheating. “HP is not recalling its notebook computers. HP has announced, in cooperation with various government regulatory agencies, a worldwide voluntary safety recall and replacement program for certain notebook computer batteries,” the company stated. Customers who have already replaced their batteries as part of the original recall program do not need to exchange them again, as this expansion does not affect new units. It goes without saying that should you have one of the laptops suspected to come with a defective battery, you are strongly recommended to stop using it as soon as possible and contact HP for a replacement. You can also use the laptop without a battery, but connected to an external power source until you get the new battery. Source
  14. Each year the U.S. produces hundreds of millions of tons of metal scrap like this, which was photographed at the PSC Metals scrapyard in Nashville. Take some metal scraps from the junkyard; put them in a glass jar with a common household chemical; and, voilà, you have a high-performance battery. “Imagine that the tons of metal waste discarded every year could be used to provide energy storage for the renewable energy grid of the future, instead of becoming a burden for waste processing plants and the environment,” said Cary Pint, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Vanderbilt University. Cary Pint, right, Andrew Westover and Nitin Muralidharan, who is holding the prototype junkyard battery they created in his left hand. He and Westover are holding bottles of the common household chemicals used in the process. To make such a future possible, Pint headed a research team that used scraps of steel and brass – two of the most commonly discarded materials – to create the world’s first steel-brass battery that can store energy at levels comparable to lead-acid batteries while charging and discharging at rates comparable to ultra-fast charging supercapacitors. The research team, which consists of graduates and undergraduates in Vanderbilt’s interdisciplinary materials science program and department of mechanical engineering, describe this achievement in a paper titled “From the Junkyard to the Power Grid: Ambient Processing of Scrap Metals into Nanostructured Electrodes for Ultrafast Rechargeable Batteries” published online this week in the journal ACS Energy Letters. The secret to unlocking this performance is anodization, a common chemical treatment used to give aluminum a durable and decorative finish. When scraps of steel and brass are anodized using a common household chemical and residential electrical current, the researchers found that the metal surfaces are restructured into nanometer-sized networks of metal oxide that can store and release energy when reacting with a water-based liquid electrolyte. The team determined that these nanometer domains explain the fast charging behavior that they observed, as well as the battery’s exceptional stability. They tested it for 5,000 consecutive charging cycles – the equivalent of over 13 years of daily charging and discharging – and found that it retained more than 90 percent of its capacity. Unlike the recent bout of exploding lithium-ion cell phone batteries, the steel-brass batteries use non-flammable water electrolytes that contain potassium hydroxide, an inexpensive salt used in laundry detergent. “When our aim was to produce the materials used in batteries from household supplies in a manner so cheaply that large-scale manufacturing facilities don’t make any sense, we had to approach this differently than we normally would in the research lab,” Pint said. The research team is particularly excited about what this breakthrough could mean for how batteries are made in the future. “We’re seeing the start of a movement in contemporary society leading to a ‘maker culture’ where large-scale product development and manufacturing is being decentralized and scaled down to individuals or communities. So far, batteries have remained outside of this culture, but I believe we will see the day when residents will disconnect from the grid and produce their own batteries. That’s the scale where battery technology began, and I think we will return there,” Pint said. The Vanderbilt team drew inspiration from the “Baghdad Battery,” a simple device dating back to the first century BC, which some believe is the world’s oldest battery. It consisted of a ceramic terracotta pot, a copper sheet and an iron rod, which were found along with traces of electrolyte. Although this interpretation of the artifacts is controversial, the simple way they were constructed influenced the research team’s design. The team’s next step is to build a full-scale prototype battery suitable for use in energy-efficient smart homes. Prototype of high-performance junkyard battery powering a small light. The researchers next step will be to produce a full-scale version suitable for use in energy-efficient smart homes. “We’re forging new ground with this project, where a positive outcome is not commercialization, but instead a clear set of instructions that can be addressed to the general public. It’s a completely new way of thinking about battery research, and it could bypass the barriers holding back innovation in grid scale energy storage,” Pint said. Co-authors on this project include Nitin Muralidharan and Andrew Westover who co-led the project and are graduate students in the interdisciplinary materials science program, Nicholas Galioto and Haotian Sun, who are both Vanderbilt mechanical engineering undergraduate students; Rachel Carter and Adam Cohn, who are graduate students in mechanical engineering; and Landon Oakes, who is a graduate student in the interdisciplinary materials science program. The work was supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration EPSCoR grant NNX13AB26A, the National Science Foundation graduate fellowship program under grant 1445197 and a Vanderbilt Discovery Grant. The team worked with Matt McCarthy at PSC Metals, who provided access to its scrap metal facility in support of this project. Article source
  15. Surface Pro 3 owners with LGC batteries report their tablets have to stay plugged in to remain operational Surface Pro 3 battery woes have gone from bad to dire. Microsoft, meanwhile, is hiding and stonewalling again. SP3 owners with LGC batteries have been complaining since the middle of September about bad batteries -- greatly diminished capacities, tablets that refuse to run unless they're plugged into the wall, and charge times measured in minutes, not hours. A month later, and the Microsoft Answers forum thread about bad LGC batteries is up to 18 pages. A separate thread for general SP3 battery problems is at 131 pages and growing rapidly. SP3 owners with dying Simplo batteries received an update for a defective driver at the end of August -- 4.5 months after the first report, and a month after law firm Migliaccio & Rathod LLP showed an interest in pursuing a class-action suit. Microsoft has been nowhere to be found amid all these problems. To date, we have a single post in the LGC-specific Answers forum thread from Microsoft engineer and forum moderator Greg, who said on Sept. 22: Hello everyone, We are aware of a battery issue that is affecting a limited number of Surface Pro 3 users. We can confirm that the issue affecting these customers was not caused by the software updates issued on August 29th. Our team is actively looking in to the issue to determine the cause and identify a fix. We will post an update as soon as we have more information to share. It's been two weeks, and I haven't seen an update. Meanwhile, reports of problems with SP3 batteries are piling up. This is the battery that Surface honcho Panos Panay said was more than up to the task: The batteries on our Surface products are designed with some of the highest charge cycles for consumer electronic devices. This means that the battery can get charged daily (5 days a week) for over 4.5 years and still maintain 80% capacity… Many Surface Pro 3 owners dispute that claim -- loudly. If you have a Surface Pro 3, take a minute to run a battery report: Make sure your SP3 is fully charged, unplug it from the wall, right-click Start (or hit Ctrl-X) and choose Command Prompt (Admin). In the resulting box, type: powercfg /batteryreport and press Enter (note the space before the / and no space in batteryreport). That generates a file, typically c:\Windows\System32\battery-report.html. Open the file. Near the top of the report you'll see the battery manufacturer name (likely SIMPLO or LGC-LGC) followed by a series of numbers. Design Capacity will tell you what the battery should be pushing. For LGC batteries, that's going to be 42,157 mWh. Look at the Full Charge Capacity, which may or may not match the Design Capacity, thus showing one level of degradation of your battery reserves. Then look at the list of Recent usage power states, where you may find that your battery's been unable to get up to a full charge. If you find something that isn't quite kosher, join the melee on the Answers forum. Microsoft needs to learn that a 4.5-month delay in providing a battery driver fix isn't acceptable. Source: Microsoft remains silent as Surface Pro 3 battery woes pile up (InfoWorld - Woody Leonhard) InfoWorld - Woody on Windows AskWoody.com - Woody Leonhard's no-bull news, tips and help for Windows and Office
  16. Today, Opera 41 has reached the beta release channel. The browser got a number of nice improvements. Now it starts faster, has an improved battery saver feature, and uses hardware acceleration for the video pop-out feature. Faster startup Opera 41 should start faster on your PC. Developers claim they managed to make it start about 48% faster than Opera 40. This is possible thanks to the lazy tab loading feature we covered earlier. The browser loads the recent active tab and pinned tabs, while background tabs will be loaded with decreased priority. Longer battery time When using battery saving mode, Opera now detects which video codec can be hardware accelerated and tries to choose that codec when doing video conferencing via WebRTC (this includes services such as Google Hangouts). This should save a lot of CPU and battery. Hardware accelerated video pop-out As you might be already knowing, Opera comes with an interesting video pop-out feature. Before Opera 41, videos displayed in the pop-out were rendered by software. This could cause extensive CPU usage, which could also lead to general system slowdown on low end computers. Opera 41 comes with a fully hardware accelerated video pop-out. This should reduce CPU load and free up PC resources. Opera's tests show up to 30% less CPU usage after this change. Other changes include an optimized and refined built-in RSS reader aka "Personal news" and improvements in Windows x64 builds. You can try out Opera 41 using the following links: Opera beta for Windows Opera beta for Windows x64 Opera beta for OS X Opera beta for Linux 32-bit – deb file Opera beta for Linux 64-bit – deb file Opera beta for Linux 32-bit – RPM file Opera beta for Linux 64-bit – RPM file Source: Opera. Article source
  17. Welcome back (to nsane)... Complaints about the SP 3 LGC battery may have their origin in the recent Simplo 'batterygate' patch Remember the Simplo battery problem in Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 -- the one that many in the press called “batterygate”? It’s back with a vengeance. This time it’s hitting the other, more common battery found in the Surface Pro 3, the one from LGC. Moreover, in a spectacular display of batt-fratricide, it looks like the new LGC battery problem was caused, or at least exacerbated, by the patch that fixed the Simplo battery. Microsoft MVP and Microsoft Answers forum community moderator Barb Bowman tweets: It looks like the @Surface Pro 3 Simplo battery firmware fix is causing issues for LGC batteries. Microsoft is silent. If you own a Surface Pro 3, it would behoove you to run a simple test. Make sure your SP3 is fully charged, unplug it from the wall, right-click Start (or hit Ctrl-X), and choose Command Prompt (Admin). In the resulting box type: powercfg /batteryreport and press Enter (note the space before the / and no space in batteryreport). That generates a file, typically c:\Windows\System32\battery-report.html. Open the file. Near the top of the report you’ll see the battery manufacturer name (likely SIMPLO or LGC-LGC) followed by a series of numbers. Design Capacity will tell you what the battery should be pushing. For LGC batteries, that’s going to be 42,157 mWh. Look at the Full Charge Capacity, which may or may not match the Design Capacity, thus showing one level of degradation of your battery reserves. Then look at the list of Recent usage power states, where you may find that your battery’s been unable to get up to a full charge. On the Microsoft Answers forum thread devoted to the subject, original poster ashtaron14 reports on his LGC battery problems: Since the Win 10 Anniversary update, I was not able to turn on my Surface Pro 3 i7 512GB with LGC battery without having it plugged in with the power supply or docking (I own a total of three Surface Pro 3 docks at home and 2 offices). It always said "82%, Plugged in, Not Charging," and would always instantly turn off once I pulled off the power supply tab. I spoke with a technical agent online, had my Pro 3 remote accessed, did all the proposed solutions, and even had a call from Bellevue, Wash., (I live in Hong Kong) before I found out that it was a software issue as stated by Microsoft. With Auto Update turned on, I was notified that I should restart my Pro 3 this morning while I was on the docking station. I was happy that this issue was going to be resolved, but now I am disappointed that this firmware update did nothing for my Pro 3. Ashtaron14 was referring to the Surface Pro 3 firmware update on Aug. 29 -- the one that fixed the Simplo battery problem. It didn’t fix the LGC battery problem. Perusing the thread (now nine pages long) reveals a litany of problems with LGC batteries on the Surface Pro 3. Many report that there was an abrupt change after the Aug. 29 firmware update, but the change invariably made the LGC battery situation worse. Many say their Surface Pro 3 dies when the power cord is pulled out of the wall. Many of you recall the Simplo battery kerfuffle. I first read about it on March 16, when Charles McKay posted a cry for battery help on the Microsoft Answers forum titled “Surface Pro 3 serious battery drain issue.” (Microsoft has since removed his post.) On May 11, Kridsada Thanabulpong, posting on the Microsoft Answers forum, reported that his Surface Pro 3 battery would only last one to two hours on a charge. (The post is still there.) Microsoft wanted $560 to fix the battery, as the machine had gone out of warranty. Many, many Surface Pro 3 customers responded and it took a few days to isolate the problem: Some SP3 machines ship with a battery made by a company called Simplo, and Microsoft's drivers for the Simplo slowly killed the battery. Most Surface Pro 3 machines come with LGC batteries, and they weren’t affected. Confronted by the obvious problem, Microsoft stalled. Various employees blamed anything they could conjure up. Finally, on July 27 we got confirmation of the problem -- and it was finally fixed in a firmware update on Aug. 29. Those who were charged $500 or $600 to have their defective batteries replaced received a refund. That’s more than five months to fix a faulty battery driver. Now it looks like Microsoft’s trying to sweep this second SP3 battery problem under the same rug. How should the batteries behave? Surface honcho Panos Panay described the situation in a Reddit “Ask me anything” session two years ago. During the AMA, the Surface Team assured us: The batteries on our Surface products are designed with some of the highest charge cycles for consumer electronic devices. This means that the battery can get charged daily (5 days a week) for over 4.5 years and still maintain 80% capacity… IF the battery fails during the warranty period, we’ll replace the battery. IF the battery fails after the warranty period, you’ll call Microsoft support and arrange for the battery to be replaced. The cost will be $200 USD. I would submit that the present record, using Microsoft’s own reporting tools, shows there’s something wrong with LGC battery life in the Surface Pro 3. I would similarly submit that anyone paying $200 (or $500) to fix a clearly defective battery -- more accurately, battery/driver combination -- is getting taken to the cleaners. The ball’s in your court, Microsoft. Source: Surface Pro 3 plagued by yet another battery problem (InfoWorld - Woody Leonhard) InfoWorld - Woody on Windows AskWoody.com - Woody Leonhard's no-bull news, tips and help for Windows and Office
  18. By default, the Windows 10 battery icon gives you a decent enough idea of how much battery is left, and you can mouse over it to see the exact percentage remaining. This system is okay, but it could be better! That’s where the free app called BatteryBar comes in. It’s a lightweight, easy-to-use app that’ll show give you plenty of additional information about your computer’s battery, including showing the percent remaining on your taskbar all the time. To get it running, here’s what you do: Download the free version of the app from this site. Go through the basic installation process (you can safely click Next through it, as there was no unwanted stuff installed). That’s it! Why did I even make that a numbered list? It really is that easy. Clicking the battery bar icon in your toolbar will switch between time remaining and percentage remaining. Article source
  19. Once upon a time, browsers were all about getting faster and scoring better on JavaScript benchmarks than their competitors. While speed still matters, many developers have recently focused more on energy efficiency than speed (which makes sense, given that most users now browse on laptops). When Microsoft said that its Edge browser was more energy-efficient than its competitors, like Chrome, Firefox and Opera, it kicked off an interesting discussion. Today, Microsoft is back with new numbers based on the latest release of Edge in the Windows Anniversary release. Unsurprisingly, Edge still outperforms its competitors (including Opera with its special energy-savings mode turned on). The new version of Edge, Microsoft claims, is now also 12 percent more efficient at rendering pages in the company’s simulated browsing tests. Every other browser also showed some improvements in these tests, which just goes to show why we need competition in the browser ecosystem. As for Microsoft’s results this time around, the company says using Edge can make your laptop last 23 to 69 percent longer than other browsers. Chrome, which also recently got a lot of efficiency related updates, still performs significantly better than Opera and Firefox. In one of Microsoft’s tests that looked at how long the laptop lasts while streaming video, Edge outperformed Firefox by 62 percent. The source code of Microsoft’s testing suite is available on GitHub. Given that Microsoft is only looking at browser performance on Windows 10, these tests obviously don’t include data for Safari. Apple, though, would likely argue that its browser remains more energy-efficient than its competitors on OS X, too. I’m pretty sure I’ll receive responses from Opera, Mozilla and Google soon after this post goes up. Article source Microsoft Edge now gets even more out of your battery
  20. Is It A Good Idea To Charge Your Smartphone Overnight? Will Charging Your Smartphone Overnight Damage It? Here’s What You Should Know There are chances that many of us plug in our smartphone for charging while going to bed at night, so that you do not have a fully drained device or low battery while rushing to work or travelling, etc. If you think that charging your device overnight is a good idea, you may want to think again. If you plan to upgrade your smartphone every two years, leaving your device to charge overnight will not do much damage to your battery. Experts say majority of the time those people are not going to notice much damage to their smartphone batteries before they start wishing for a new device. However, frequent charging does damage the lithium-ion batteries in our smartphones. And it’s not because they can be overcharged, said Edo Campos, a spokesman for Anker, which produces smartphone chargers. “Smartphones are, in fact, smart,” Mr. Campos said. “They know when to stop charging.” In other words, smartphones are designed to understand when the battery is at capacity, and should at that point stop absorbing additional electrical current. According to a report by The New York Times, Android smartphones and Apple iPhones are equipped with chips that protect them from absorbing excess electrical current once they are fully charged. Theoretically, any damage from charging your smartphone overnight with an official charger, or a trustworthy off-brand charger, should be negligible. The report stated that most smartphones use technology that allows their batteries to charge faster, but this process leads to lithium-ion and lithium-polymer batteries rusting faster. If a user wants to preserve the life of their lithium-ion battery beyond the typical lifetime of a smartphone – usually two years – they can try using a charger made for a less-powerful device, stated the report. Source
  21. Initial reports about the Simplo battery firmware update are positive, but why did it take Microsoft so long? Yesterday afternoon Microsoft released a firmware update for all Surface Pro 3s. The stated intent of the update is to fix the battery issues that have bedeviled the tablet for many months -- a problem so onerous it sparked a class-action probe. With more than 12 hours experience under our belts, it looks like the firmware patch solves the problem. Microsoft's Surface support reputation will take longer to repair. The symptoms first appeared earlier this year on many tablets. The most thorough early report came from Kridsada Thanbulpong, posting on May 11 on the Microsoft Answers forum: I've been using Microsoft Surface Pro 3 for a year, and shortly after the warranty expired I noticed my Surface Pro 3 can only last about 1-2 hours after a full charge… Talk with Microsoft via chat support and they insist this was a software problem and reinstalled the driver and asked me to wait few days to see if things improve. Not only it didn't improved, but now my Surface can only last 30 minutes. Kridsada's initial post has had nearly 1,200 responses and is 117 pages long. There was an initial report on the battery drain problem in the Microsoft Answers forum from Charles McKay on March 16, but that link now resolves to Kridsada's post. Microsoft confirmed the battery problem on July 27: We believe this is something that can be addressed via software and are working through the details of how we deliver that It's taken more than a month since that confirmation, but we finally have what appears to be a solution. To Microsoft's credit, there's a FAQ that explains the cause of the problem as well as its solution: A bad driver inaccurately reports the battery's charge status With bad charge status information, the Surface Pro 3 doesn't recharge properly The new driver correctly report the battery's charge status Battery charge levels should “self-correct” over the next five charge/discharge cycles If this analysis is correct, charge levels should be going back to normal in short order -- this has been confirmed by those who have installed the firmware patch -- and there should be no permanent damage to the battery. The FAQ lists a series of steps to take to properly apply the firmware/driver patch. For those with truly dead batteries, there are extra steps to get the trickle flowing. Microsoft also acknowledges that it charged people to fix the faulty battery, and is offering refunds: We're currently working to gather additional details about which customers were affected. If we find that your device was one that could have been fixed, we'll reach out to you within 30 days with more information. We're committed to making sure that people who experienced this issue are taken care of. Three obvious questions arise from this situation: Which firmware patch caused the problem? There were firmware updates on Jan. 19, April 19, and July 21, but their release notes make no mention of batteries. Are the release notes that bad -- or is something else gumming up the works? Why did it take so long? Initial report appeared on March 16, a definitive description on May 11, Microsoft's mea culpa on July 17, but the patch didn't roll out until Aug. 29. Surely a simple change to the battery driver, which only applies to Simplo brand batteries, couldn't take that long. Why were customers left twisting in the wind? I've seen dozens of reports of people who were charged hundreds of dollars to fix a problem that was well-known to the Surface team. That never should've happened. Surface customers deserved better from a billion-dollar business. Source: Microsoft finally fixes Surface Pro 3 battery woes (InfoWorld - Woody Leonhard) InfoWorld - Woody on Windows AskWoody.com - Woody Leonhard's no-bull news, tips and help for Windows and Office
  22. Everyone has a smartphone these days and while processors have often got more efficient over the years, and software tweaks have been made to conserve battery life, many heavy users still struggle getting more than a day’s use out of their phone. However, that could start to change from next year, as a new technology has been developed that promises to power devices ranging from smartphones to electric cars for longer periods of time. This new promising battery technology is being developed by SolidEnergy Systems, which is led by researchers at MIT. They have developed a battery that replaces the common anode material we are used to with a much thinner, high-energy lithium-metal foil that can hold more ions. As Techspot points out, previously there has been issues with using lithium metal due to higher resistance and temperature constraints. However, a new liquid electrolyte solution has been formed, which allows these batteries to run, without worrying about minimum operating temperatures. Essentially, these new batteries from SolidEnergy can hold two times the energy density of what we have now, so batteries could either shrink while maintaining current performance, or you could squeeze more juice out of a similarly sized battery. These new batteries are currently heading for a 2017 release, and from there, SolidEnergy will be moving on to wearables. View: Original Article
  23. Researchers spot privacy concerns in APIs that share battery levels with site owners. A battery status API, intended to allow site owners to serve low-power versions of sites and web apps, is being used to track user behavior. Introduced in HTML 5, the API allows site owners to see a device's battery percentage and the time it would take to charge said device to prevent the execution of intensive operations if a user's battery was low, security and privacy technology researcher Lukasz Olejnik said in an Aug. 1 blog post. Olejnik said the tracker could be used to collect behavior analytics, identify users in otherwise identical computer installations, record how often a user's device is under heavy use, and in some cases identify a user's battery capacity. The information potentially could be monetized as people may be prone to pay more for a service if their battery levels are low, the blog said. Article source
  24. If you have a Simplo (not LGC) battery, you may be asked to spend $500 or more to fix Microsoft's problem An ongoing problem with a specific kind of Surface Pro 3 battery has customers up in arms. So far, Microsoft hasn't even acknowledged the problem. But what appears to be a defective battery -- the Simplo battery, as opposed to the LGC battery -- has driven some folks to spend $500 or more to fix something that isn't their fault. On May 11, Kridsada Thanabulpong posted a detailed complaint on the Microsoft Answers forum: I've been using Microsoft Surface Pro 3 for a year, and shortly after the warranty expired I noticed my Surface Pro 3 can only last about 1-2 hours after a full charge… Talk with Microsoft via chat support and they insist this was a software problem and reinstalled the driver and asked me to wait few days to see if things improve. Not only it didn't improved, but now my Surface can only last 30 minutes. Microsoft's response was less than helpful. Kridsada finally concluded: Thank you for your suggestion to talk to Assisted Support. Unfortunately, their suggestion even after all this is to do the out of warranty exchange ($560 in my local currency) which is just sad. I loved the machine the moment I tried it in the store, and paperweight-when-not-plugged-in definitely wasn't what I expected it to be in a year after purchase. Now he has to plug in his Surface Pro 3 or it won't even start. Nudge the power cord, and the tablet shuts down. There are many additional complaints on that Answers thread: this one, this, this, this, and several others. Microsoft MVP Ian Dixon has picked up the problem on his TheDigitalLifestyle blog. Microsoft's response is effectively: "Tough luck, you're out of warranty and it's going to cost you $500 to replace the battery." This isn't the same battery life complaint many people had with the Surface Pro 3, and it isn't linked to faulty sleep states. It appears to be specific to the Simplo brand battery that shipped with some Surface Pro 3s. The LGC battery in other Surface Pro 3s does not exhibit the same problem. It's time for Microsoft to own up to its problems -- admit that it shipped faulty batteries and offer to fix the problem free -- before a consumer-friendly Attorney General steps in. Those who were coerced into paying $500 or $600 to fix the battery should see what recourse they have in the courts. Source: Microsoft is charging Surface Pro 3 customers to fix defective Simplo batteries (InfoWorld - Woody Leonhard) InfoWorld - Woody on Windows AskWoody.com - Woody Leonhard's no-bull news, tips and help for Windows and Office
  25. I would like to know members's opinions about the Android 5.xx, I've checked some forums and sites reporting a lot of bugs and battery drain issues, but at the same time some reported a good and smooth OS with better RAM management (Less RAM used) and some other new features, my smartphone is going to receive the Android 5.0.2 soon, so I want to know: 1- What is your general experience with the OS? 2- things you like? 3- things you dislike? 4- Is it worth the upgrade from KitKat? NB: Please give the exact version of your smartphone because the version 5.1 is reported the most stable
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