There had been a bit of a break in news about ‘Atlas’ (which we firmly believe to be the Pixelbook2) since the end of 2018, but things are popping up left and right lately and we’re even inclined to think there’s a good chance that the Pixelbook 2 could make its debut at a smaller Google event in April.
While none of this is set in stone right now, the features we’re seeing added to ‘Atlas’ are definitely happening, so let’s talk about a new one we’ve happened upon: fast charging.
The original Pixelbook charges quite quickly if you ask me, but any chance at getting a device with even faster power-up options is always welcome in my book. With generally-strong battery life, the ability to top off quickly when the time arises only adds to the overall portability of Chromebooks in general.
Check out this commit, and more specifically, the language inside it:
atlas: raise charger power limit to 60w
this raises the ingress/charger power limit to 60w.
the hardware team has verified atlas can take 60w.
TEST=verified atlas negotiates PD to 20v and can draw > 45w using zinger
For those unaware, most Chromebooks charge with 30 or 45-watt power bricks. For the size of the batteries in most devices, this is enough juice to move the needle relatively-quickly.
What we’re seeing added for Atlas here is the ability to push the charger to 60W using something called ‘zinger’. We’re not sure exactly what that is at this point, but it is clear that Atlas now has the ability to accept much higher wattage than most Chromebooks. For reference, Chromeboxes that use direct power supplies and have no batteries tend to hover in this range (60-65W) of power draw.
My guess? ‘Zinger’ is a basic way for ‘Atlas’ to draw more power when really needed (battery is low or when charging and using the device at the same time) and allows for a quick initial charge that tails off as the battery fills. This is what we see in most quick-charge protocols, and it will be fantastic to see this emerge for Chromebooks as well.
We’re keeping an eye on this and everything else surrounding ‘Atlas’ as we eagerly await its official arrival.