As Chrome OS continues to explode in popularity, Google is updating the platform with more features and bug fixes. Now, the company appears to be looking at fixing an issue that causes dramatic battery drain on Android phones using the Phone Hub feature on Chrome OS.
A recent commit in the Chromium Gerrit describes a “battery friendly” connection method. Apparently, much of the work on using this new option is already done for the Chrome OS side of things, but changes to how Android connects to Phone Hub need to be completed for the battery savings to apply.
This change allows the nearby connections client to request a specific keep alive and timeout when making a connection to a nearby device. Nearby Share keeps the default values, while Phone Hub opts to use a more battery friendly option. The change for Phone Hub is gated by a feature flag so it can be rolled out when the Android side is ready.
As Android Police notes, the main change Google is making here is to the polling rate of the info needed from your Android phone. Instead of pinging the phone every 5 seconds or so, this new method would adjust that interval to around 15 seconds and will stop polling if it hasn’t picked up a response within 60 seconds. It’s speculated that these improvements will arrive on the Android side through a Google Play Services update.
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