How to get better laptop battery life in Chrome, courtesy of Google cracking down on Flash adverts

Flash! Aah-aaaah! Saviour of battery life! (Once you turn it off)

Auto-playing Flash ads are a first world problem, but extremely annoying nonetheless. Now Google has stepped in to stop those ads from playing without your permission, with an update to its Chrome browser.

The BIg G says that these autoplaying adds are a drain to your laptop’s battery life - if we were being bitchy, we'd point out what a memory hog Chrome is nowadays, but we're not - and that it was working with Adobe, the firm behind Flash, to launch an update to the browser.

This update would “intelligently pause content that isn't central to the webpage." This means that those annoying ads the play at the side of the website will get silenced while autoplaying content in the middle (which is much more likely the reason you visited that website) will play as normal. Yes, we do appreciate the irony of this, if you're currently wrestling with the ads that often ping up over's content. We're very, very sorry about that and we are talking to our ads teams about it.

If you actively want to play an ad, you will be able to just by clicking on it, so don't worry.

While Google touts the main reason for the move as being a way of reducing power consumption on computers, it should also really improve the browsing experience, but also upset content providers and advertisers. The new feature is available to anyone that uses the Desktop beta version of Chrome now, with all other Chrome users soon.

To enable the feature - this has to be done manually - open up the settings page on Chrome, click on “Show Advanced Settings” and just head to Chrome’s content settings and select “Detect and run important plugin content.”