With Microsoft Edge switching to a Chromium base, Microsoft has shown that it is very interested in contributing to the Chromium open source project to further improve Edge and other Chromium-based browsers. One of the latest feature requests from the Redmond giant, detected by Windows Latest, is to make Chromium more battery-efficient by "avoiding unnecessary media caching."
"The proposal is to prevent streaming media content from being cached on disk whenever possible," explained Shawn Pickett, senior software engineer at Microsoft in a Chromium bug report. The engineer added that media caching keeps the disk active on the PC, which is causing the highest power consumption. In addition, caching certain multimedia content can also prevent PCs from entering lower modes and consume less battery life.
Some comments from Chromium developers suggested that implementing this change could have some inconvenience when watching videos in loop, although power comparison tests were performed by the Microsoft engineer showed promising results so far. This is what Pickett explained on the project's GitHub page:
We did local tests of a preliminary implementation that reproduced unencrypted 1080p streaming media content on a laptop while it was disconnected from power. The test configuration sampled power metrics every 10 seconds. The results for baseline construction and construction with aggregate implementation were determined by the average of five executions each, with each execution of five minutes.
The tests showed an improvement of 62 mW for the main battery rail with the change enabled. During this test, the writing activity on the system disk decreased by 309 KB / sec. No significant changes were observed in the virtual work set.
If this function request is accepted, disabling media caching will be disabled by default, but will be available as a function indicator in Chromium-based web browsers. Do you think that Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge Insider browser have too much power, especially when you stream videos from the Internet? Let us know below.
Additional readings: Chromium, Edge Insider, Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge