The top 25 laptop battery life performers from CNET Labs
Forget screen size, processing power, or number of ports. The first thing every laptop shopper should think about in a new purchase is battery life. After all, you don't want your PC shutting down in the middle of a big meeting, halfway through a cross-country flight or while posting a particularly scintillating social media update.
Based on the extensive battery testing conducted in the CNET Labs, these are the 25 PCs with the longest battery-life scores that we've seen over 2017-2018. This list includes Windows and MacOS laptops, Windows two-in-one hybrids and Chromebooks running Google's Chrome OS. Not included are Android or iOS tablets.
This spring 2018 update has some major changes, including four new entries in the top 10 alone, such as the latest LG Gram 15 and the first Qualcomm Snapdragon laptop we've tested, the Asus NovaGo.
The specific test used here streams a private video over Wi-Fi on an endless loop. Note that these scores reflect the specific configurations we tested, and that screen resolution and CPU choice are some of the major factors that affect battery life.
The previous version of this Microsoft hybrid, which has an extra battery in its keyboard base, ran for 709 minutes, or 11:49. The newer Surface Book 2 ran for even longer in initial testing, but we found it to have inconsistent battery life scores over time, so we're not including it here.
HP's x360 version of the EliteBook, another business laptop, ran for 694 minutes, even with a powerful Core i7 processor. A newer version, the EliteBook x360 1020 G2, with a built-in privacy screen, was not as impressive, and failed to make the top 25.
This basic hybrid from Dell has especially good speakers for movie-watching, and a pretty decent 10 hours, 22 minutes (622 minutes) of battery life. Newer models have 8th-gen Intel processors, which may even add a few minutes.
Adding a Touch Bar and a more powerful processor to the 13-inch MacBook Pro gets you battery life of 607 minutes. Basically, every current MacBook, and even a couple of previous versions, made this list. Apple is no longer the top dog in laptop battery life, but it's still in the game.