Apple “Fixes” MacBook Pro Battery Life by Axing ‘Time Remaining’ Estimate

Yesterday’s macOS Sierra 10.12.2 update saw Apple quietly remove the ‘time remaining’ battery estimate in new 2016 MacBook Pro models, a move apparently to address battery life concerns.

According to Apple, in a statement to The Loop’s Jim Dalrymple:

Apple said the percentage is accurate, but because of the dynamic ways we use the computer, the time remaining indicator couldn’t accurately keep up with what users were doing. Everything we do on the MacBook affects battery life in different ways and not having an accurate indicator is confusing.

While Apple told Dalrymple they stand behind the 10 hour battery life of the new MacBook Pro, we cannot say the same. Our own battery life tests of our 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar have been less than stellar.

We’re seeing usage times of 4-5 hours and that’s not even pushing the computer to the limit, with just Safari and Chrome open, along with Messages, Twitter, Skype, Photos and iTunes, with brightness set at about 80 per cent. I recorded my own start and end times with battery life and did not come close to Apple’s claim of 10 hours.

This removal of ‘time remaining’ doesn’t address the issue at hand—battery life. Whether it was inaccurate or not, battery life in the 2016 MacBook Pro is still poor, compared to the performance of my MacBook Air when it was new in 2012. We’ll have to redo our battery life tests with the latest macOS 10.12.2 update.

How to bring back the ‘time remaining’ battery feature? There’s a way to still see how much battery life is remaining, by launching Activity Monitor on your Mac, then clicking the Energy tab. Next to the graphs at the bottom, you’ll see how much time is remaining on your battery charge.

How’s your 2016 MacBook Pro battery life so far?