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ABOUT BATTERY LIFE ON MACS (+ A COOL VIDEO)

Apple makes a pretty bold statement that your battery "is designed to retain up to 80% of its original capacity at 1,000 charge cycles".  What's a charge cycle?  There's a good description here, along with a matrix of Macs and the number of charge cycles you can expect.

In reality, I haven't experienced 80% of the original capacity, even at 500 charge cycles. I think Apple marketing sometimes gets a little too aggressive with their language. Recently my wife told me that her MacBook Pro Retina (late 2013 model) was only getting about 15 minutes of battery life on a full charge.  

Her battery had 539 charge cycles and the battery status said "service battery".  And it did cut out at 15 minutes. My battery in a MacBook Pro Retina (mid 2014 model) was at 350 charge cycles, and I was routinely getting about 2-2.5 hours of life at my normal full throttle use. That's nowhere near the advertised 1000 and 80%.

I decided to replace both of our batteries, something my team at TechRoom does routinely for customers. The results were great.  She now gets an average of 7 hours of battery life and I get well over 5 hours.

After replacing the first battery, I decided to record the second replacement to video just to show you the work involved. There are a lot of tools involved that most people don't think about: I use a Magsnap wrist strap that is properly grounded to largely prevent ESD damage, and I am very, very meticulous about the connectors.  This is not a do-it-yourself job. The smallest slip or mistake can ruin the entire computer. The entire process took 38 minutes.  This video is sped up to show the work in 5:

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