CLOSINGS: View Closings

Apple: Yes, we're slowing down older iPhones

Apple has acknowledged what many iPhone owners long suspected: It has slowed older phones.The tech giant issue...

Posted: Dec. 21, 2017 4:57 PM
Updated: Dec. 21, 2017 4:57 PM

Apple has acknowledged what many iPhone owners long suspected: It has slowed older phones.

The tech giant issued a rare statement of explanation on Thursday, saying that it has used software updates to limit the performance of older iPhones that may have battery issues that would cause them to turn off suddenly.

Tech analysts and angry customers have reported in recent days that operating system updates had caused older iPhones to slow considerably, with some suggesting that Apple could be using the tactic to encourage fans to buy new phones.

Apple insists the updates were made with a different goal in mind: It said the performance of lithium-ion batteries degrades over time, which can sometimes cause phones to suddenly shut down in order to protect their components.

Related: 10 things you need to know about iPhone X

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

But the updates can also lead to disappointing speeds.

Doron Myersdorf, CEO instant-charging battery startup StoreDot, said that "smoothing out" means that phones will reorder incoming commands to make sure not all of them are done in parallel.

"The inevitable outcome of it will be an inherent slowdown of the average response times by the system," he explained.

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

"Our goal is to deliver the best experience for customers, which includes overall performance and prolonging the life of their devices," it said.

The revelation sparked an outcry among Apple fans, with some suggesting they may switch to rival Samsung.

"Since Apple admits they slow down old iPhones I'll admit I probably won't buy a new iPhone," said Twitter user Jeff Zenisek.

-- Samuel Burke contributed reporting.

Article Comments

Mason City
Clear
46° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 46°
Albert Lea
Clear
50° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 50°
Austin
Clear
50° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 50°
Charles City
Clear
54° wxIcon
Hi: 64° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 54°
Rochester
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 62° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 51°
Tracking the return of sunshine for the midweek.
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Veterans speak out about healthcare

Image

Grants for safe rides to school

Image

Former State Patroller recovering from addiction

Image

Olmsted County life saving awards

Image

EXCLUSIVE: Huisentruit person of interest speaks out

Image

Mill and Overlay project begins tomorrow

Image

Mill and Overlay Project

Image

Golden Apple

Image

New Information in Jodi Huisentruit Case

Image

Minnesota church responds to Sri Lanka blasts

Community Events