Stream Audio with 10X Battery Life using Connected Standby

Posted on 14 February 2013 by

P1130835Always-on is the a feature you’ll find with Connected Standby-capable Windows 8 PCs.

Some people think they don’t need it. Let me explain why you need it.

Connected Standby (or Always On, Always Connected – AOAC) is the mark of a ground-breaking new category of PCs that will not only be always-on capable but will have hardware that is so efficient that it will completely change what you think is good battery life.

I’ve just completed a 5 hour streaming audio test on the Acer W510 Windows 8 dockable tablet to confirm my previous measurements that were taken from ACPI figures and yes, it’s correct. The Acer W510 uses 700mW of power while streaming audio (via WiFi using the Tune-In Windows 8 application) in Connected Standby mode. 700mW is about 8X better than the best Ultrabook I’ve tested and about 5x better than the best UMPCs. It’s consumer-tablet class. ARM-competitive. Amazing.

Connected Standby is a controlled always-on environment and one of the most important parts of Windows 8. The Modern UI isn’t just a user interface layer thrown over Windows 7, it’s part of what is almost a second operating system running in parallel to the desktop.  In the future you’ll want to be running Twitter, Email, Audio Streaming, Turn-By-Turn navigation and other functions through this part of the operating system rather than the desktop because it’s going to bring new efficiency. It already does on Clovertrail and you can even use it to run Skype, for days without charging!

Intel’s Clovertrail can stream audio with 10x less power usage than your laptop and it’s because of Connected Standby and the ground-breaking PC hardware associated with it. Idling-down and controlling hardware like no other PC you’ve used (unless you’ve got a Clovertrail tablet!) it will affect battery life in every scenario you can think of. Video playback,  browsing and office use. Clovertrail tablets have taken Atom from 6hr battery life to 10hr battery life. The same will happen with any other laptop that’s Connected Standby capable in the future. You want it!

Keep an eye on the new Ultrabooks in June because some of them are likely to be the only laptops that are CS capable. Bay Trail, for the Ultra Mobile fans will be with us with much more power in Q4 2013.

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  • guy

    What do you use to measure power or do you just manually calculate it based on time and battery level?

    • Chippy

      Originally I used Windows Perfmon which has a battery discharge measurement that takes figures from the ACPI mechanism (reports directly from battery) and this time I did a 5hr test and looked at the battery levels every hour or so. The results were the same.

  • peejay

    Chippy, do you know if there are any file syncing apps that work with connected standby? I’m thinking Dropbox, sugarsync, Skydrive etc… As far as I can tell, Win8 apps don’t actually sync, they just let you access files held in the cloud (provided you have an internet connection, of course), and you still need a x86 app to do proper syncing. It would be really great for a PC to sync files while it is in standby, so whenever you took it out of the house in the morning you’d know it had the latest version of your files. (Without having to turn it on to do a sync before you left the house.)

  • Todd

    Are you sure connected standby is used with video and browsing? I assumed it was only situations when the monitor is off.

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