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I keep my MBA 2013 plugged in most of the time. AFAIK for a long term it is better to keep modern battery around 40%. I have seen that some other laptop manufacturers added feature to their drivers to prevent battery charging over certain level. Is there anything similar available for mac?

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The 40% charged state is applicable for Lithium-Ion batteries only if you're going to remove the battery and put it in long term storage without using it. Refer How to Prolong Lithium-based Batteries. In the case of MacBook models, Apple recommends storing the batteries at 50% charge if you do not plan to use it for more than six months.

For normal usage, Apple recommends that you run the laptop on battery once in a while and also do a full discharge and recharge to calibrate the battery (full discharge/recharge means running it down till the computer automatically goes to sleep or shuts down due to low battery and then recharging it completely to 100% in one go).

Apple laptop batteries - Standard Maintenance

For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Apple does not recommend leaving your portable plugged in all the time. An ideal use would be a commuter who uses her notebook on the train, then plugs it in at the office to charge. This keeps the battery juices flowing. If on the other hand, you use a desktop computer at work, and save a notebook for infrequent travel, Apple recommends charging and discharging its battery at least once per month.

See Apple's guide on Notebook batteries for detailed information.

  • That was a good answer (+1) – Ruskes Sep 26 '13 at 13:23
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Not to my knowledge. The MacBooks already do some management of charging, for example if the battery is almost full it will not start charging to 100%, to save charging cycles.

Also, to my knowledge modern batteries die by age, mostly independently to the charging and discharging cycles. But I might be wrong there.

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