HP’s EliteBook is a Duracell bunny record-breaker

9 Sep 2008

Battery life: the bane of notebook users everywhere. How many hours of use do you get before your notebook packs it in? Five, six? But if HP’s claims are true, its new EliteBook 6930p comes with an optional ‘Ultra-Capacity’ battery that should see continuous use for up to 24 hours – that’s all-day use without running for the plug!

Is 24-hour battery life too good to be true? Well, here’s the skinny on how HP achieved this. First off, you must buy the ‘Ultra Capacity’ battery’ and then go off and download the latest version of Intel’s graphics driver and the HP BIOS from its software and drivers download page.

Then you’re going to have to wait until the EliteBook equipped with the HP Illimi-Lite LED display is available for sale in Europe from 1 November and also add the Intel 80GB SSD drive to the bill and, hey presto, you should be getting up to 24 hours of juice from the battery.

Oh, it should be running on Microsoft Windows XP (you didn’t think that anything running on Vista would be powered by a single battery for up to 24 hours did you?).

“All-day computing has been the holy grail of notebook computing,” said Charl Snyman, vice-president and general manager, Commercial Products, Personal Systems Group, HP EMEA.

“With the HP EliteBook 6930p, customers no longer have to worry about their notebook battery running out before their work day is over.”

If you want to work with what you have, then here are a few tips to get the most out of your notebook battery. First of all, it might seem obvious but switch off Bluetooth or Wi-Fi when you’re not using them – they drain quite a bit of power over time.

Secondly, another obvious point, but close down any background programs that you don’t need, like Google Desktop, which is resource hungry.

Third tip: turn down the brightness on your screen – the lower you turn it down, the less power will be consumed.

Finally, when you’re not using the notebook put it in hibernate mode instead of standby because this effectively shuts it down as opposed to running minimally.

Oh, and this might sound weird, but keeping your laptop cool saves battery power so don’t keep it on your lap and allow it to overheat – give it some breathing space.

By Marie Boran

Pictured: the new HP EliteBook with 24-hour battery power, due for release on 1 November