New MacBook Pro patch released to fix battery life, Consumer Reports says

Apple has reportedly fixed a bug that caused massive battery life issues with the new MacBook Pro. Consumer Reports said on Tuesday that Apple released the patch to beta testers and that it should address many of the concerns brought up in Consumer Reports‘ battery life tests. The outlet is going to run its tests again and will report back on whether anything has indeed changed. In any case, it turns out that the performance measurements taken by Consumer Reports actually revealed a flaw that caused the MacBook Pro’s battery life to decline at a quicker-than-normal rate.

“We appreciate the opportunity to work with Consumer Reports over the holidays to understand their battery test results,” Apple told Consumer Reports. “We learned that when testing battery life on Mac notebooks, Consumer Reports uses a hidden Safari setting for developing web sites which turns off the browser cache…. We have also fixed the bug uncovered in this test.” Right now it appears that the patch only fixes that bug, which means folks that are experiencing other issues related to battery life might not see an improvement.

We’ve noticed our own problems on a fully-loaded MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, for example, that don’t seem to be necessarily related to Safari. Everyday use of the computer, not just benchmark tests, tends to drain the MacBook Pro of its juice much faster than Apple advertises. Apple clearly took issue with the Consumer Reports tests, however, since it was the first time ever that the outlet had ever withheld a recommendation from a MacBook.

The good news is that this fix seems to be more than Apple’s last attempt to solve the problem. Last month, Apple released a patch that simply turned off the indicator showing how much longer the battery was going to last, seemingly sweeping the problem under the rug. My hope is that additional patches are on the way, and that Consumer Reports confirms this software update fixes part of the problem.

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