Apple admits to slowing down older iPhones

Benchmark confirms aging batteries are the main reason for slowing iPhones

Benchmark confirms aging batteries are the main reason for slowing iPhones

Apple has admitted it introduced a feature to the iOS operating system past year to manage performance on the iPhone 6, 6s and SE that slows down the handset to enhance the battery.

Apple says this is about the user experience, but it feels more like saving face.

The slowdown affects a range of Apple phones, including the iPhone 7 and iPhone 6S, models that came out in 2016 and 2015, respectively.

On Monday, the blog Primate Labs, a company that makes an app for measuring the speed of an iPhone's processor, published data that appeared to show slower performance in the Apple's iPhone 6s and iPhone 7 models as they aged. Benchmarking firm Geekbench made a decision to look into the claims, eventually finding very strong evidence iOS 10.2.1 did indeed throttle performance on older iPhones, now including the 6, 6s, and 7.

Unconfirmed reports say that replacing batteries returns performance and CPU clock speed back to normal but we can't recommend that you start breaking open your iPhone to get better performance (for a start, it will invalidate your warranty and could cause other issues).

In doing so, the company has confirmed the biggest conspiracy theory about the mobile phone is actually true.

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The company said its software updates for the iPhone 6, iPhone 6S, iPhone SE and iPhone 7 are created to "smooth out" peak power demands, prevent these surprise shutdowns and ultimately prolong the lifespan of batteries.

"Lithium-ion batteries become less capable of supplying peak current demands when in cold conditions, [when they] 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", the company explained. The tech giant admitted to slowing down older phones.

Apple is responding to owners of older phones who have increasingly said they notice slower performance after they upgrade their devices' software.

Replacing the lithium-ion battery, which costs £79 in the United Kingdom, should allow them to work at normal speeds again. What exactly defines the thresholds to reach these stages can be either a rather simplistic counter taking into account the charge cycles of a given battery, or (and more hopefully) a more dynamic method that would be able to take advantage of the battery PMIC's capabilities of determining battery wear.

Apple said in its statement that it will continue to use the feature with other products in the future.

3- Live with the slightly slower iPhone.

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