Apple on Thursday confirmed what some conspiracy theorists suspected, that it intentionally slows performance of older iPhones as batteries weaken from age. 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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Beginning with a software update it pushed out past year, however, Apple tried a new tactic: slowing down devices during moments of high demand so their beleaguered batteries could keep up.
The performance of the iPhone 7, released at the end of 2016, has also dropped following this month's iOS 11.2 update, according to The Guardian. But it's largely shrugged off with smartphones - it doesn't help that the battery is not user replaceable.
On the other hand, there's a lot of negative reaction to this information, probably because people think Apple could manufacture higher quality hardware that doesn't see its peak performance decline quite so quickly.
They were reacting to Apple's statement on Wednesday - in response to a claim by an app company earlier this week - that it had introduced a software feature a year ago to prevent phones from unexpectedly shutting down.
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The statement from Apple came in response to a report from earlier this week from Primate Labs, the company behind the Geekbench processor benchmarking software.
Apple says the batteries are created to retain up to 80 percent of its original capacity at 500 complete charges. It introduced it with iOS 11.2 for the iPhone 7. Some agreed that the company was doing the right thing, but a number of critics argued that Apple could have taken other measures, from modifying its operating system to better manage peak demands to building iPhones with bigger batteries to slow down battery depletion.
Apple has responded to the allegations on this subject on the site techno The Verge: "Our goal is to offer the best experience to our customers, both at the level of the performance and lifetime of their device". User TeckFire explained that they were able to get their 6S running at its original speed simply by replacing the battery, prompting other users to speculate about exactly why a battery swap did the trick.
iPhone users have long complained their devices seem to slow down when new models are released.
Apple insists the reason is not because they want you to purchase a newer model. Apple's new models are the iPhone 8 and iPhone X.