WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- Apple announces that slowing down older iPhones targets issues such as unexpected shutdowns caused by aging lithium ion batteries or cold weather conditions.
- The company said on Wednesday they released a software feature last year that makes iPhones operate more slowly to counteract problems with its worn out batteries.
- iPhone owners have long protested their smart phones slow down when new models are released.
If you notice older iPhones seem to perform more slowly, you are not mistaken.
Apple issued this statement:
“Our goal is to deliver the best experience for customers, which includes overall performance and prolonging the life of their devices. Lithium-ion batteries become less capable of supplying peak current demands when in cold conditions, have a low battery charge or as they age over time, which can result in the device unexpectedly shutting down to protect its electronic components.
Last year we released a feature for iPhone 6, iPhone 6s and iPhone SE to smooth out the instantaneous peaks only when needed to prevent the device from unexpectedly shutting down during these conditions. We’ve now extended that feature to iPhone 7 with iOS 11.2, and plan to add support for other products in the future.”
People using iPhones often complained their units seem to slow down when new models are released. Some believe Apple is doing it purposely so that users buy new models. Apple has denied this claim.
But Apple’s lack of transparency about making iPhones run slower caused adverse reactions online.
“Apple should have been more transparent with end users, the press and analysts,” Moor Insights & Strategy analyst Pat Moorhead said.
Tumblr co-founder and iOS developer Marco Arment tweeted that “the reputation damage from secretly slowing down old iPhones, regardless of the reason, will likely linger for a decade.”
Creative Strategies analyst Ban Bajarin tweeted that Apple should give iPhone users an option.
“The battery life issue for Apple, and iPhones, is a fascinating one because the average life of an iPhone is so much longer than other devices. It is their attempt to problem solve for lots of people who hold onto phones for [three] years or longer.”
Apple didn’t issue a statement whether a new iOS release would give notifications or an option to turn off the slowing process.
An option for some older iPhones may be to update the battery instead of buying a brand-new device. iPhone battery replacement costs $79 when it’s no longer covered by a warranty. A kit can be purchased online if you want to replace the battery yourself, which is something very difficult.
The feature that slows down the iPhone will spontaneously turn off if you opt to replace the iPhone battery.