Next Apple update will enable users to opt-out of iPhone slowdown

Next Apple update will enable users to opt-out of iPhone slowdown

The firm is already reportedly facing legal action over claims of defrauding customers by making old phones slower without warning so people buy new ones.

The problem has been so widespread that in 2014, a professor of economics at Harvard observed that every time a new iPhone was released, a surge of complaints would surface over slowdowns.

The system in question was implemented as part of iOS 10.2.1 in 2016 and affects the iPhone 6, 6s, SE, and, more recently, 7. However, the complaints remained.

It comes as Apple faces a multitude of lawsuits and increasing scrutiny from consumer protection groups and government agencies. After the report garnered widespread attention and opened Apple to litigation, the company came clean and released a statement to explain the issue.


Apple on Friday replied to an inquiry from the Shanghai Consumer Council over the slowing down of older iPhones after iOS updates to offset battery performance.

The company stated that older batteries are unable to hold a charge as well as new batteries and can unexpectedly shut down when placed under stress. Cook said the phone-slowing feature was initially added to prevent the phone from inconvenient shutdowns, like during important calls or video chats. It said the company will cut the price of out-of-warranty iPhone battery replacements from late January to December 2018. Cook also believes that a company like Apple could only have been founded in America and they have a responsibility to give back to the country, "one of the ways to do that is to create jobs", said Cook.

Apple is also planning a software update that will provide more transparency about the condition of an iPhone's battery, and will let consumers switch off the performance management feature - even if it leads to more unexpected shutdowns. "Now we don't recommend it, because we think that people's iPhones are really import to them, and you can never tell when something is so urgent".

Ian Miles Cheong is a journalist and outspoken media critic.

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