MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

Summary: Apple's MacBook increases battery run time by over 40 percent, I'm pretty sure that most users would take more run time over a removable battery any day


7 Hours per charge. 1,000 Charges.Apple refreshed its popular MacBook consumer notebook today. Never fans of cutting prices, the update to the company's low-end notebook follows the same m.o. as Apple's other speed-bumps -- more horsepower for the same price.

The new model costs $999 and includes:

  • 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (up from 2.26GHz)
  • 2GB DDR3 memory
  • 250GB hard drive
  • 8x double-layer SuperDrive
  • NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics (up from NVIDIA GeForce 9400M)
  • Built-in 10-hour battery
  • Polycarbonate unibody enclosure

ZDNet's own Rachel King notes that the faster GPU is one of the main differences:

The graphics behind that glossy 13.3-inch screen will start looking better too with the integration of the new NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics processor, making the graphics performance up to 1.8x faster than the previous generation.

What stuck out for me was the new MacBook's better battery performance. Gone is the 60 wH, 7 hour battery found in the previous (Fall 2009) MacBook. The new 63.5 wH battery has about 5.8 percent more capacity, but manages an impressive 42.8 percent more run time if Apple's estimates turn out to be true.

To eek out the extra capacity, the new MacBook's battery is sealed like the rest of Apple's mobile products, including the MacBook Pro, iPhone, iPod and iPad. I suspect that this is tradeoff that most users would gladly accept.

Which you you prefer: more run time or a removable battery?

[Update: The previous Fall 2009 MacBook also had a sealed battery and the post was updated accordingly.]

Topics: Apple, Hardware, Laptops, Mobility

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

    To eek out the extra capacity,

    should be:

    To eke out the extra capacity,

    Unless it frightened you like a little girl!
    • It sure frightens me, unless the replacements are free. Only lasts one year

      [b] [/b]
      • Where do you get <i>that</i> from?

        In my experience (servicing literally thousands of Macs over decades) the typical life span of an Apple battery is the same as anyone else - about 3 to 5 years for most users. Also, the batteries are easily replaced by any competent technician. When Apple started introducing the internal battery they said that the cost to do this would be about $130.00. The cost of most Apple removable batteries prior to that? $129.00. At the Apple Store where I worked we would do this type of service (and at that time installing/upgrading memory or internal cards such as WiFi was the closest analogy) while you waited.

        BTW: if I need to replace the battery in my Dell mini 10v I can buy a new one from Dell for - $129 for the stock 3 cell that has an estimated charge time of about 2-3 hours. The 6 cell versin I use (about 6-8 hours typical charge life) is $149.00. I would much prefer a sealed, <i>replaceable,</i> even if not "swappable", 10 hour battery.
      • By typing 10*1000 hours to years into my URL bar.

        [b] [/b]
      • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

        @AzuMao Wrong. The battery lasts more than a year, it lasts several times longer than previous iterations of the design--meaning the battery will last the general life of the product when used anywhere near the calculated averagenusage patterns.

        I have a feeling you just blurted that out in classic FUD style.
      • From TFA: "Up to 10 hours per charge, up to 1000 charges maximum"

  • False choice?

    You have provided no rationale whatsoever that a fixed battery is required to achieve the additional battery life.
    In my view the whole argument is bogus.
    • It could be a larger battery

      If you think about the space for the compartment and connections needed for a removable battery that onec gone, now leaves more room for more battery, hence additional battery life. It also cuts down on the cost of manufacturing both the battery and the case, so a larger profit margin for Apple by leaving the price at what it is.

      Not to mention the battery replacement income Apple will get a few years down the road!
      John Zern
  • Removable battery equals more run time. (nt)

    John Zern
  • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

    Give me the battery life - now that I use my iPad for movies, the MacBook with 10 hours is more than enough!
  • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

    Your actually mileage may vary....

    Manufacturers' tout battery life - but are never achieved in real world use. A battery that can't be replaced by the user is just another way to lock people into the Cult of Mac.
    nw trout
    • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

      @nw trout
      How is this a ??????[i]way to lock people into the Cult of Mac.[/i]??????? But advertising the battery is not the typical drop out battery, does that make people jump to buy one? Stating that by removing the connection hardware they can put a larger battery in makes sense. Also of note, the battery is not soldered to the motherboard, so it is replaceable; if one is technically inclined. Give it a year, or two and you??????ll find aftermarket batteries. THis happened with the original (or now ??????classic??????) iPods. Sure you have to remove a few screws and unplug a connector, but the price is not out of line. How many people actually keep two or three batteries ready to go, besides the few that post here? People act is if the MacBook and Macbook Pro??????s have the cases welded shut, which is no true at all. But never let the facts get in the way if an Apple hater.
    • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

      @nw trout <br>Yeah, this is certainly true with Apple, where they claimed 10 hours, but many reviewers are only getting a measly 12. At only a 15-20 percent better value than Apple claimed, iPad early adopters are getting the shaft.

      Plus, note to ZDNet, fix your crap-ass forum software. It is ridiculous that I can't use the percent sign (let alone greater than, less than, or many other characters) in my posts.
  • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

  • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

    So this is basically a MacBook Pro 13", minus the aluminum casing, the backlit keyboard, and the Firewire 800 port. With the same amount of RAM from the factory, it's $100 less.

    I'm thinking a backlit keyboard, the aluminum, and the Firewire port (it is a Mac) are worth $100.
    • Aluminum is more expensive than polycarbonate?

      [b] [/b]
      • RE: MacBook battery gets 42 percent boost

        @AzuMao Yes, the manufacturing process and raw materials associated with the product plus development costs associated with design all increase the price. Cost Accounting 301.

        Now if you waive the development costs or shift them to the costs associated with another product then it's cheaper. Not feasible from an accounting standpoint, but writeable.