Apple explains why your older iPhones might be slowing down

Apple sued in Chicago for slowing down older iPhones

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"Because degraded batteries last much less and end up with a lower voltage Apple's solution was to scale down CPU performance, it doesn't solve anything and is a bad experience... but it's better than having your device shutdown at 40% when you need it the most", one Reddit user said.

Indeed, Apple ran into an issue a year ago with some iPhone 6s batteries that were causing device shutdowns.

Suspicions have been confirmed, Apple is intentionally slowing down your iPhone as it gets older.

It addressed the issue after Primate labs founder John Poole analysed iPhone 6S and iPhone 7 performance over time.

In a follow-up post, he added: "The reputation damage from secretly slowing down old iPhones, regardless of the reason, will likely linger for a decade". It reported that there was even more of a disparity when the iPhone 6 was tested on iOS 11.2.0. 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.

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According to Apple, it introduced a feature starting with the iPhone 6 line of phones that is meant to prevent unexpected shutdowns.

Extended to the iPhone 7 with iOS 11.2, the "feature" will spread to "other products in the future", basically aiming to "prolong the life" of your iDevices... at the expense of overall performance. The processors in those devices wanted to hit faster speeds, but their batteries couldn't handle the demand, prompting some phones to simply switch themselves off. Apparently it's got something to do with preventing older phones from shutting down unexpectedly. The Cupertino-based company offers a battery replacement service for $79, and those who have replaced iPhone batteries claim improved benchmark and performance.

The life of a lithium-ion battery reduces over time, and there is no way to extend its capacity.

Users wondering about the status of their phone's battery can check with apps such as Battery Life by RBT Digital, or by visiting an Apple Store. The disclosure came after customers, specifically on Reddit, pointed out that replacing the battery on an old iPhone appeared to make it run, much smoother and faster.

But certainly, there is an argument that Apple should have been more transparent about the slowdown "feature", and some will feel their trust in the company has been dented by the admission.

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