When picking a Web browser, "green" individuals and laptop users with limited access to electrical outlets should perhaps give Internet Explorer 9 a try. New data shows that it can beat the latest versions of Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Opera when it comes to power consumption.
So no one thinks we've overlooked the fact: yes, the data comes from a Microsoft research team. A post on the IEBlog detailed the testing process at great length, though, making it less than likely that any cheating took place.
Now let's move on to the team's conclusions (which they only reached after running through five different scenarios). IE9 scored best by a significant margin, as the team estimated that a laptop equipped with a standard 56 watt-hour battery would be able to run it for 3 hours and 45 minutes.
Next, Firefox 4 came in a close second, earning an estimate of 3 hours and 35 minutes.
Then there was a big dropoff. The Microsoft team thinks an identical laptop performing identical tasks and using Chrome 10 would only last 2 hours and 56 minutes. Meanwhile, a laptop running Safari 5 was allotted a lifespan of 2 hours and 55 minutes, and the team predicted that a laptop running Opera 11 would die after 2 hours and 43 minutes.
That's worth giving some thought. Of course, there are plenty of other factors that influence people's browser choices, but just about anything beats a dead screen, and reviewers have been giving IE9 high marks in lots of ways so far.