Consumer Reports Gives 2016 MacBook Pro Low Rating Over Battery Life Concerns [VIDEO]


Consumer Reports has announced Apple’s latest MacBook Pro line up does not make the non-profit’s “recommended list”, due to “very inconsistent” battery life on the new computer models.

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The issue at stake, says Consumer Reports, is battery life, which they said was inconsistent, ranging from 4 to 19.5 hours. They tested battery life by running web pages on repeat until the battery died using Safari and got mixed results.

For instance, in a series of three consecutive tests, the 13-inch model with the Touch Bar ran for 16 hours in the first trial, 12.75 hours in the second, and just 3.75 hours in the third. The 13-inch model without the Touch Bar worked for 19.5 hours in one trial but only 4.5 hours in the next. And the numbers for the 15-inch laptop ranged from 18.5 down to 8 hours.

Those were just a few of the results; we tested battery life on these laptops repeatedly.

Another set of tests were done using Google’s Chrome browser, which the company said “initial results were on the high end of battery life range,” and suggested trying this browser if you are having battery issues.

When they reached for comment on MacBook Pro battery life, Apple told Consumer Reports “any customer who has a question about their Mac or its operation should contact AppleCare.”

Check out the video below:

On our 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, we’ve been getting just under 5 hours of battery life, and that’s with the latest macOS Sierra 10.12.2 update installed.


  • Hoho

    Phew! Was almost gonna get it!

  • I had a bit of a laugh at the Apple Store.
    I looked at the MacBook Pro table which had 4 pros lined up, 2 of which where frozen.

    Someone could have messed with them, who knows, but it did give myself and a couple others a chuckle as we walked by.

  • Lakh Jhajj

    Gary , did you spec it up or you went with the base MBP with Touch Bar ?

  • went with 16GB of RAM

  • MleB1

    These results definitely not good – I mean, the test itself, beyond testing the graphics card and maybe a little to do with the processor, would hardly be doing much else to strain the system. Imagine if you’re trying to use a Pro for ‘pro’ computing – CAD, photo or movie manipulation, graphic design – on the go, and you’d not be sure when the thing might crap out. Especially since Apple has now hidden the ‘remaining time’ info on the most recent MacOS release (rather than, oh, you know, fix the issue).

  • xxxJDxxx

    Hopefully this, among other criticisms of the new Macbook, wakes apple up to the wrong direction in which they’ve been going. Although I’m doubtful.

  • Although the inconsistency is not good here and hoping Apple takes a good hard look at what’s going on here. I can’t help but notice the 8-19.5 hr battery life on the 15″ MBP (the one I’m looking to get). I’ll take that any day of the week.

  • BigCat

    If you accept the large variation in battery life times that CR got. Then I think that it is reasonable to conclude that this issue is either a battery defect or a software issue.

    I would also add that possibly their testing is flawed. One of their first tests produced results as high as 19.5 hours, which just seems wrong or at the very least rules out the battery size.

    It is really disappointing that CR did not remove these batteries and perform a bench test to see if there are issues with the battery cells themselves.