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Microsoft is working on a tech, which will learn your habits to make your laptop’s battery last longer

Microsoft is working on a tech, which will learn your habits to make your laptop’s battery last longer

by AshwinOctober 3, 2015

Microsoft isn’t just about software, as you probably know, with its incredible Xbox line of gaming consoles, Windows Phones, and even basic hardware like mice and keyboards.


But the Redmond company is dipping its feet in some new waters this times.

Microsoft is very keen to optimize the battery life of laptops. And it is not very surprising in the digital age we live in. Our smartphones and tablets last way longer than a full fledged laptop actually can. Then of course, mobiles do not have the super power hardware that our laptops do, hence the battery juice lasts much longer on our handsets.

But, what if the laptop’s battery can be tweaked to the possibility of delivering more power. Is it possible?  A team of researchers over at the Redmond headquarter’s are working to achieve this very thing. Their quest is to make the laptop battery smarter, in that it will learn the user’s habits, to make the battery last longer.

The plan behind this sounds rather simple. This is what Ranveer Chandra, a principal researcher at Microsoft Research has to say:

“Rather than waiting for the perfect battery, we’re using all the technology available right now.”

That actually makes a lot of sense, the tech has to not depend on using better batteries, but in making the existing ones more efficient.

Microsoft says that batteries are hardware dependent, and do not rely on the OS. It also says that software defined battery system is not suitable for the most common batteries, which use lithium-ion. So instead of relying on one kind of battery, the tech will use many different kinds, optimized for various functions into the PC. This will then communicate with the OS, to optimize the battery according to the what the user is currently using the computer for.

For example, your laptop’s battery won’t last long if you are watching a video, or playing a video, or browsing, as to compared how it will last if you were reading something, or even reduced the screen brightness, or used t with Wifi or Bluetooth turned off.

The upcoming battery tech will use machine learning to learn from a user’s individual habits, so it can figure out how to extend battery life based on how that person is using the device.

Microsoft’s researchers will announce the project they are working on, called Software Defined Batteries, next week at the ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles. The team already has working prototypes, but the project is still in research stage. Microsoft hopes that the tech it develops will someday be put to us in consumer products.

You can read more about this project at Microsoft’s website.