Battery life has always been a concern with laptops, and it’s important to utilize the limited hours between charges as efficiently as possible. Choosing which programs you use on your laptop can influence how long the battery will last.
The more resources a program uses, the harder the laptop needs to work, which determines how much power is in demand from the battery. Here are some applications that use up less resources.
OpenOffice is a free alternative to Microsoft Office. It’s been around for a while, and uses significantly less resources. Some may argue it’s not as fully featured.
Keep in mind that most people use less than 10% of Microsoft Office’s capabilities, so you shouldn’t notice much (if anything) lacking.
The only thing OpenOffice doesn’t include is an e-mail application, but there are plenty of options out there.
Foxit PDF Reader is a great replacement for Adobe’s Acrobat PDF Reader – at least the free one. It’s much smaller in size, and creates less of a resource footprint. If you’re only looking to view PDF files, it has everything you’re looking for, and is arguably easier to use.
Internet Explorer 9 claims to take up less resources than other browsers. It’s certainly more secure than it’s predecessors, so it’s worth mentioning. Google Chrome is great as well.
We’ve heard praise from tech enthusiasts and average users alike who love how lightweight and quick Chrome is. Mozilla’s Firefox browser has been known to use up a lot of resources, so it may not be ideal if you do a lot of web surfing on your laptop.
It’s important to protect your computer from outside threats, and having an effective antivirus is a definite must. Most laptops come with either Norton or McAfee, which are known resource hogs. Using them on a laptop makes little sense. Although we are vendor agnostic, we are very fond of ESET’s NOD32 antivirus, which has been proven to take up limited resources, while being very effective.
Which programs do you use on your laptop to extend the battery life? Is battery life something you consider when choosing a program for your needs? Please share your thoughts in the comments, or on our Facebook fan page, or send us a tweet (@nerdsonsite).