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Sony Touts 25 Hour Battery Life For Haswell-Equipped Vaio Pro 154

Posted by samzenpus
from the all-day-long dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Sony claims that both the new 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch models of its Haswell-equipped Vaio Pro ultrabooks are the world's lightest. The 11.6-inch model weighs in at 1.9lb (0.87k , where as the 13.3-incher is a little heavier at just 2.33lb (1.06kg). But it's the battery life on offer here that really makes the new Pros stand out. The 11.6-inch Vaio Pro offers 11 hours of battery life as standard, while the 13.3-inch achieves 8 hours. However, Sony is also offering a sheet battery you can connect to the base of the ultrabooks. On the 13.3-inch Pro that increases battery life to 18 hours, but on the 11.6-inch you get a true day-long amount of juice with 25 hours of battery life claimed."
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Sony Touts 25 Hour Battery Life For Haswell-Equipped Vaio Pro

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  • So? (Score:5, Funny)

    by puddingebola (2036796) on Wednesday June 05, 2013 @10:07PM (#43920705) Journal
    My soviet made flashlight gets endless battery life, just keep cranking the handle.
    • by otuz (85014)

      If you need to constantly charge it with the crank, it has no battery life at all.

    • Re:So? (Score:5, Funny)

      by alostpacket (1972110) on Wednesday June 05, 2013 @10:47PM (#43920957) Homepage

      In Soviet Russia, you power battery?

      (this almost seems like a setup!)

      • Re:So? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by smash (1351) on Thursday June 06, 2013 @12:04AM (#43921309) Homepage Journal
        You laugh, but when the zombie apocalypse hits, he'll have a working flashlight for more than a few hours :D
        • by Solandri (704621)
          Not if he bought [allaboutcircuits.com] a fake [instructables.com].

          Even if he bought a real one, the vast majority of them don't work very well [flashlightreviews.com]. If you really want to prepare for the zombie apocalypse, stick with good old rechargeable AA or AAAs, a programmable charger [amazon.com], and either a generator or a large regulated solar panel.
          • by smash (1351)
            And when you run out of fuel, or are forced to abandon your solar panel installation? Charging via solar whilst running for your life not so practical :D
            • by peragrin (659227)

              you do realize there are hundreds of small easy to carry solar generators that can top off AA's, cell phones, radios right?

              It is possible to physically disconnect from the Power Grid while staying connected to the Net. it takes research and planning at the moment and you won't be connected 24 7 but hey your face book status doesn't need 15 minute updates you of taking a shit.

    • by c0lo (1497653)

      My soviet made flashlight gets endless battery life, just keep cranking the handle.

      yesss, I ssseee... wha'sss the lifetime of the handle, preciousss?

  • "25 hours of battery life claimed." So in reality it'll be about maybe 4 hours of actual use, unless Sony's reality is screen dimmed until you can just barely make out shapes and just staring at it for 25 hours. Yep, that sounds about right for Sony Reality.
    • BatteryMark 2007 (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Jeremy Erwin (2054) on Wednesday June 05, 2013 @10:27PM (#43920831) Journal

      Imagine if automakers got together and started measuring the gas mileage of new cars with a cool test of their own making—one in which the cars were rolling downhill with their engines idling. Suddenly you'd have some pretty amazing claims: Why, that three-ton SUV gets 300 miles per gallon! This subcompact gets 500! In tiny print at the bottom of the window sticker you'd find a disclaimer saying that, well, um, you know, your mileage may vary.

      Crazy, right? Yet that's more or less what's happening with laptop computers and their battery lives. Right now, I'm looking at a Best Buy flier touting a $599 Dell laptop that gets "up to 5 hours and 40 minutes of battery life." Down in the fine print comes a disclaimer explaining that "battery life will vary" based on a bunch of factors. Translation: you ain't gonna get five hours and 40 minutes, bub. Not ever. Not even close.

      From a 2009 article excoriating the practice. [thedailybeast.com]

      A computer that can function for ten hours is quite useful, but a twenty-five hour battery life is only marginally more so.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 05, 2013 @11:01PM (#43921025)

        ...then consider the life of the laptop... a year from now when the 24 hour battery is back down to a 10 hour battery and a 10 hour battery down to 5 or less. considering that batteries degrade generally in line with their full lifecycle abuse, the 24 hour battery will degrade on a better curve for the usage/abuse patterns.

        • Nothing in the ad copy suggests that the battery is glued in. If battery life beyond your threshold is compelling, you'll replace it. If it's not, you won't.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Anonymous Coward

            Not having to replace the battery in a year is a feature.

            • But you'd still have to buy the external battery pack. Which would you rather have, a lightweight computer that lasts for 10 hours because you replaced the main battery, or a somewhat heavier computer that lasts for 10 hours because you've successfully run both batteries halfway into the ground? The cost is the same.

        • While a battery will degrade with time and accruing cycles, it's nowhere near as extreme as you're saying. Sure, if you're charging and discharging at 60+W and really abusing the battery by rapid-charging it right after it's been completely discharged (still warm) or other no-nos, you might see that rapid a drop in capacity, but these devices hardly draw 10W in normal usage scenarios. The batteries shouldn't lose much capacity at all during their first few hundred cycles...

      • It's MobileMark2007, not BatteryMark.

      • Agreed about the bullshit marketing.

        They should be measuring the _worst_ case of battery life while running FurMark or Prime95 -- constant GPU usage and constant CPU usage.

        • by smash (1351)

          Is that your typical workload? In reality, most people use laptops on battery to do work on word documents, email or powerpoint.

          Obligatory car analogy: Are you suggesting we test fuel economy on vehicles whilst driving uphill in 40C with the A/C on, towing a caravan of the maximum rated towing capacity?

          No... the tests are better aimed at a typical workload, or a typical workload being performed in a reasonably battery conservative manner.

          If you are not a typical user, then obviously they need to be

          • by oreaq (817314)

            No... the tests are better aimed at a typical workload, or a typical workload being performed in a reasonably battery conservative manner.

            I disagree. The value you get with this method is absolutely worthless because you have no idea how your workload differs from a "typical" workload or how your handling differs from "reasonable" handling. These are all meaningless words. There are probably a couple of hundred million portable general purpose computers out there. Lower an upper bounds on how long a charge lasts at least have a well defined meaning.

            • by Sockatume (732728)

              Unfortunately they're meanings that are both of little relevance to actual usage, like describing the human diet in terms of the most extreme non-fatal cases.

              • by oreaq (817314)
                "The battery lasts 45 minutes when you have high or maximum load on all your components. This happens for example when watching HD videos on youtube or playing modern computer games. With no load on the system, for example when you are just reading an eBook, your battery will last 6 hours." to me seems far more meaningful than "With typical workload and a reasonably battery conservation measures your battery will last 4 hours."
            • by vux984 (928602)

              I disagree. The value you get with this method is absolutely worthless because you have no idea how your workload differs from a "typical" workload or how your handling differs from "reasonable" handling.

              Its not worthless because you can tell a lot of about the relative performance of different models. If your usage is 30% worse on one then it will likely be 30% worse accross them all and you can still use the ratings to make valid comparisons.

              Lower an upper bounds on how long a charge lasts at least have a

            • by smash (1351)
              Except that on apple's website they are quite specific about the test conditions...
      • And that, my unreading friend, is why the notebook only offers 25 hours of battery life if you buy an additional battery pack -- because its rarely useful.

      • by smash (1351)

        It all depends on your useage.

        My MBP gets say, 8 hours (real world) when I am running 30-40 percent screen brightness, keyboard backlight off, not playing audio or video and just reading/typing lightweight stuff on-lin.e

        If I crank up a game or 3d modelling program, handbrake, etc... well .... running neverwinter nights, the battery life drops to 45 minutes (I tested it for a laugh).

        25 hrs of light usage would be good in transit where you are doing say, an international trip to somewhere remote, or ar

      • While I do agree with you in principle, there are certain use cases in which "idling" very much applies - with the exception of the display backlight. Reading Slashdot, for instance... or office work... or reading a PDF... so the claims aren't always as far-fetched as they seem. Hell, I regularly get 12 hours of battery life out of my Thinkpad, and that's rated for something like 13 or 14 hours IIRC, so pretty much right on the money since I use mid-high display brightness instead of dimmed.

        Apple is better

      • by Arrepiadd (688829)

        A computer that can function for ten hours is quite useful, but a twenty-five hour battery life is only marginally more so.

        Maybe in this day and age where iPhones have to be charged every night that comment makes sense. But I come from a time when crappy phones had batteries that lasted several days. And you could go on for a weekend out without a charger, because by the time you came back home on Sunday evening the battery would still be more than half full.

        A computer with a 25 hour battery life doesn't need to be on all the time. In fact, if you are using it at home and for a few hours a day, you could stash the charger in a

        • by torkus (1133985)

          I'm from the same era ... you had to remember to charge your phone instead of it being automatic every night. Eeking out the extra day with the magical 1 bar left because you forgot to charge.

          Phones today are so different it's hardly comperable. For one, always on push data...your phone isn't just pinging the tower every while anymore. Plus I used to pick up my phone to talk on it now and then. Occasionally send a txt (if a friend had the same carrier). Today many people check their phone every few min

    • by tmark (230091)

      There`s no misinformation on the part of Sony here. The article makes it clear how much battery life they are claiming with - and without - the extra battery.

      And frankly, if the 11`` gets anything close to 11-h, I count that as pretty good. And depending on how much the extra battery weighs and how big it is, being able to work for 25-h - heck, even 15-h - gets all the way to awesome for me.

      • Re:Battery Life (Score:4, Insightful)

        by hawguy (1600213) on Wednesday June 05, 2013 @11:20PM (#43921095)

        There`s no misinformation on the part of Sony here. The article makes it clear how much battery life they are claiming with - and without - the extra battery.

        And frankly, if the 11`` gets anything close to 11-h, I count that as pretty good. And depending on how much the extra battery weighs and how big it is, being able to work for 25-h - heck, even 15-h - gets all the way to awesome for me.

        Maybe not misinformation, but lack of information - if they are going to claim 25 hour battery life, they should include the weight, size and price of the battery.

        • Re:Battery Life (Score:4, Informative)

          by thegarbz (1787294) on Thursday June 06, 2013 @04:41AM (#43922573)

          Maybe not misinformation, but lack of information - if they are going to claim 25 hour battery life, they should include the weight, size and price of the battery.

          Weight (g) - Approx. 290 g (10.3 oz)
          Dimensions (WxHxD) - Approx. 277 x 16 x 130 mm (11.0 x 0.7 x 5.2 in) (w x h x d) (excluding projections)

          Straight from their website.

          I'm actually with Sony on this one. The last thing I want in a press release is an never ending diarrhea of specifications which are already available to those who are interested. They gave as much information as needed which is that the 25 hours is achievable with a extra sheet battery on the bottom of the laptop.

          Now if you'll excuse me I have an appointment with an exorcist.

        • by Kjella (173770)

          Maybe not misinformation, but lack of information - if they are going to claim 25 hour battery life, they should include the weight, size and price of the battery.

          You can lie by omission but I don't see what you're complaining about here, they say it's a sheet battery accessory. It obviously has a weight, bulk and a price tag even if it's not stated. The point of a press release is to reach people who go "Hey, a 25 hour battery life sounds like something I could need... maybe I should check it out" to your selling points, the rest you can tell them about later. I know /. hates marketing and sales with a vengeance, but really... first you have to get them interested i

          • by hawguy (1600213)

            Maybe not misinformation, but lack of information - if they are going to claim 25 hour battery life, they should include the weight, size and price of the battery.

            You can lie by omission but I don't see what you're complaining about here, they say it's a sheet battery accessory. It obviously has a weight, bulk and a price tag even if it's not stated. The point of a press release is to reach people who go "Hey, a 25 hour battery life sounds like something I could need... maybe I should check it out" to your selling points, the rest you can tell them about later. I know /. hates marketing and sales with a vengeance, but really... first you have to get them interested in what you're offering in the first place, then you can start talking specs and prices.

            How could I have been more clear about what I'm complaining about? How could I have been more clear than "if they are going to claim 25 hour battery life, they should include the weight, size and price of the battery". Otherwise, *any* manufacturer could claim a 25 hour battery life with appropriate battery. My 3 year old Thinkpad T520 offers 25 hour battery life with "9-cell plus slice battery", but the slice battery adds 1.5 pounds and $150 - $200 to the price of the laptop.

            If the 25 hour battery life is

    • I don't know. I was worried about that with the Surface but my Surface and Surface Pro almost always get more than the advertised use time. I've generally found laptop manufacturers to be generally pretty accurate.

  • So they add a large external battery that completely destroys the advertised weights and sizes ... and thats supposed to be impressive?

    The 2.33 pound notebook WILL NOT run for 25 hours, since the battery adds weight and volume, doesn't it?

    Guess what, my laptop will run for months ... because its attached to a UPS ... backed by a bank of car batteries, as they power other things in my home during power outages ...

    You have to be an idiot to believe this sort of marketing BS ... guess thats how it made the fro

    • by Jeremy Erwin (2054) on Wednesday June 05, 2013 @10:38PM (#43920897) Journal

      The sheet battery weighs only 290 g, [sony.co.uk]

      • by Sockatume (732728)

        It's rated for 36 Watt-hours. Even if that's per cell for the four cells in the battery, it'd have to be running in a heck of a low power mode to get the run time they're describing.

        • It is not per-cell (at that weight it would be a much more notable breakthrough if it was).
          So assuming the screen, backlight, memory, and SSD use no power at all. Then you can use 15% of your CPU/GPU for 14 hours - yay marketing!
          In fact the USB 3 charging port alone would drain the main and external batteries in 9 hours with the laptop in full sleep.

    • by Covalent (1001277)
      Absolutely correct. What is needed here is a real power benchmark. A numerical score that incorporates weight, screen size, performance, and battery life. Perhaps something as simple as:

      Score = Battery Time * Screen Size * Performance Benchmark Score / Weight

      Doubling the weight to double the battery time would result in no net gain under this kind of formula. However, using a more efficient battery or optimizing the computer to use the battery time better would result in higher scores.
      • by Nemyst (1383049)
        Doubling the battery weight won't double the weight of the laptop, so your score would in fact go up with that technique. In fact, your score is biased towards things that maximize battery weight, because it's linearly proportional to battery time, thus making it most efficient when the weight of everything else is negligible compared to that of the battery.
      • I agree with you that some benchmarking system would help, maybe "flops per amp-hour" or something, but your formula would lead to manufacturers gaming the system for higher scores and ignoring that people want different devices for different needs.

        For example, a smartphone may have less screen size and performance than a tablet but not have an equal return in battery time or weight reduction, resulting in a lower score, and still may be "better" for someone that can't fit a tablet in their pocket.
        Likewise,

    • Tandy TRS-80 runs for 20+ hours on 4 AA cells ... does that mean it that laptops have finally cought up with the 1980's !!!

  • by Osgeld (1900440)

    all I want is a super light laptop that I can take notes on without having a netbook keyboard nor costing a freaking grand for a piss poor 1.8ghz CPU

    • Cheap, powerful, small. Pick two.

      • by Osgeld (1900440)

        I want cheap with a full size keyboard, its amusing that a 13 inch "ultrabook" with a 1.8ghz cpu cost 800 bucks, but a 10 inch 1.6 ghz "netbook" cost 250

        give me 250 under 3lbs with a decent sized keyboard, it shouldn't be that radical of a jump

        • A Core i7 CPU at 1.8ghz and an Atom CPU at 1.6ghz aren't even in the same ballpark. That's like comparing an MLB team to your 6 year old's T-ball team. They both hit balls with sticks and run but that's where the similarity ends.

          If you want to split the difference, Woot's got an 11.6" Core i3 computer for $300 right now. It's not the latest generation but it's inexpensive, light, and more powerful than a netbook with a reasonably sized keyboard. I type on an 11.6" and the key spacing the the same as my

          • All he's asking for is a decent keyboard on a relatively inexpensive small notebook.

            The difference between a great keyboard and a fucktasticly shitty keyboard is about $50.

          • by Osgeld (1900440)

            I know that, dipshit, why is there no middle ground here except for chromebook, I dont need an i7 to type notes and check email, and I fat finger a 7 inch netbook's keyboard constantly. Why is this difficult? you are like the 3rd person to tell me this, if I want power I will go home and sit in front of my overclocked 3770k

        • I want cheap with a full size keyboard, its amusing that a 13 inch "ultrabook" with a 1.8ghz cpu cost 800 bucks, but a 10 inch 1.6 ghz "netbook" cost 250

          The ultrabooks are much thinner (harder to design), use more expensive batteries and much more expensive CPUs. The 1.6GHz atom is severely trounced by the 1.6GHz core i5 or whatever.

          That said...

          I love my eee 900, and I'd love the same thing (950g! that's lighter than almost all extant laptops and the PSU is lighter than just about any other I've seen) with

        • by Ost99 (101831)

          Netbooks use atom processors, comparing that to an i5/i7 ultrabook is like comparing a Lada and a Ferrari.
          Comparing CPU clock speed across different designs makes no sense. A 2GHz x86 CPU can be 10 times faster than a different design at 4GHz (still x86).

          There's a ton of non-ultrabook 13"-14" that fits your description. Either 14" $250 chromebooks with about 2x the performance of a netbook, or $350 laptops with 3-4x the performance of a netbook.

          • by Osgeld (1900440)

            chromebook almost fits, but I rather have a functional computer and not a cloud enabled doorstop

    • by smash (1351)
      Would you like a pony with that?
  • by PSXer (854386)

    How many legs does a dog have if you call the tail a leg? Four. Calling a tail a leg doesn't make it a leg.

  • ...on offer here that really makes the new Pros stand out.

    Survivalists and campers are also anticipating this new release. In addition to the long battery life they can also be used to create spontaneous fires in emergency situations. These new "smart" batteries are able to sense an emergency and self ignite with no need for user input.

    • by bmo (77928)

      I would think that a real survivalist would invest in some field guides and other books for when the shit really hits the fan, so they say, there isn't going to be power anyway. I mean, come on, a book on blacksmithing and one on farming the old fashioned way would be far better.

      >bringing a computer with you camping.

      Isn't the point of camping about trying to get away from that stuff? It is for me...

      --
      BMO

  • Will window 7 have the same battery life? or did Sony make this windows 8 only?

  • by kangsterizer (1698322) on Thursday June 06, 2013 @12:59AM (#43921565)

    For example the old sony vaio z with a battery sheet offered 16H of battery time. Just to get some idea of what the 25h from the advertisement linked up top means ;-)

  • Now I don't have to bother re-charging my laptop when I go to bed. It's always the most problematic of times because of that horrible humming noise recharging a laptop battery makes.

    Who cares? Who serious considers Sony laptops anymore? The train has left the station and Sony is the conductor on the platform waving the red flag. "We have some completely awesome irrelevant technology, look at us!" ... "Our laptops are 10 grams lighter than Apple!" It just goes to prove how completely out of touch Sony is
  • cool. just like the X series thinkpads.

  • I got a Vaio 9 months ago and I am not impressed by how robust it is. Within minutes after opening the box, the laptop case had scratches. It looks like it is made of metal, but in fact this is just a cheap painting on a plastic case, and the painting goes away easily. Then one month ago, the screen broke while I was carrying it closed in my backpack.

    The comparison is harsh with an Apple laptop that live several years without showing any sign of fatigue. I do not think I will buy a Sony machine again - exc

  • I've always wondered why companies making computing devices that run off batteries continually made things smaller and smaller, with the goal of also keeping the same (poor) battery life, rather than realizing that after a certain point these devices are small enough and they should instead start cramming ever bigger batteries into the same form factor.

    Take an iPhone 4 and 5 as a recent example. The size of an iPhone 4 is just fine. I wouldn't want something smaller, in fact. Yet, with the iPhone 5 they

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