Battery life of my macbook pro

Less than a week into getting my new mac, I am almost done now setting it up for my work. One thing I noticed is that I was getting just around 4-5 hrs of battery life whereas its supposed to be around 8-9 hours for the 15″ macbook pro. And this was without using any audio/video. This was kind of letting me down as one of the key points I was interested is the battery life.

When I checked my graphics card settings, it was set to automatic graphics switching. So, ideally it should be using the intel graphics processor and not the nvidia graphics card as I was not running any graphics intensive applications. Could not figure out the reason and sent a mail to our cisco mac users. Got a suggestion from one of them to use this gfxCardStatus app to check which graphics card is being used and to force it to use one of them. Was surprised to see that it was always using the nvidia one which explains the low battery life. Then checked the dependencies that this app lists showing which one is the culprit and it turns out to be google talk plugin 😯 . Never expected that to make use of the nvidia card. Anyways now I have forced it to use only Intel one and I am getting 6+ hours (almost 7) of battery life 😀 . I am going to keep an eye on the battery life to see if its going to be consistent.

And all this is with wireless always on, bluetooth off and keyboard & screen luminosity set to around 50%.

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