Why aren't browser based timers reliable?

Timers often do not run reliably in browsers due to the ongoing war between advertisers (who want to grab your attention) and responsible browsers (who want to be protective of your computing resources). This means that most browsers will do a version of background throttling. They will monitor when a browser view is not visible and will then (reasonably) restrict most of that web-pages access to resources (like the CPU). This even includes javascript timers.

How can you get around this?

  • build a desktop app (which is what we have done)
  • build a browser plugin or chrome app (not done yet - let us know if you would like this [1]
  • keep the browser window open

  1. We did not do this by default since installing an extension alone was (1) reasonably inconvenient for many users and (2) would not have the benefits of a desktop app (such as allowing some custom integration with trays etc). If you think differently always happy to learn about it :slight_smile: ↩︎