Apple is right to slow down older iPhones, here's why

iPhone Battery
iPhone Battery (Image credit: Rene Ritchie / iMore)

Yesterday, February 7, Apple got slapped with a 25 million euro ($27 million) fine by France's Directorate General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Prevention (DGCCRF).

In what is tantamount to a corporate smack on the wrist (Apple probably spends more than $27 million a year on toilet paper), French authorities concluded the following:

The DGCCRF has indeed shown that iPhone owners had not been informed that the updates of the iOS operating system (10.2.1 and 11.2) they installed were likely to slow down the operation of their device.

If you didn't know already, Apple slows down older iPhones. Intentionally. Back in the day, this was quite a big deal, so hopefully, it isn't news to you. But just in case, now you now.

This story was all the rage a couple of years back. Around the end of 2017, suspicions began to emerge that Apple was intentionally, and worse, secretly, slowing down iPhones with a performance management feature, designed to stop big spikes in performance from shutting off your iPhone unexpectedly, or worse, killing your battery. Apple later admitted that it had indeed introduced such a practice in iOS 10. It apologized and offered to replace out-of-warranty batteries for just $29.

Tech, like time, is an ever-flowing river. Everything gets older. With every passing day, new technologies and capabilities are revealed and created within the industry. The stuff that was already there starts to lag behind. This is normal, the same is true of the automobile industry, health care, sport and more.

When this story first broke out, I was surprised at how much everyone else seemed to be surprised that iPhones are not immune to aging. That with each passing year, as Apple improves iOS by adding more powerful and more extensive features, its older hardware doesn't function the way it once used to.

In the tech world, we are served by a unique combination, a synergy of hardware and software. It's a recipe that Apple prides itself on doing really well. The problem is that software can be changed every few days with tweaks to coding. When it comes to Apple and the iPhone, hardware updates only usually come once a year.

Lithium-ion batteries

One key aspect of user experience that Apple has to manage, is device longevity. Whilst Apple makes a new iPhone each year, not everyone buys it. In fact, many, many customers keep hold of phones for two, three, four years or more. That's why Apple's iOS updates still cover phones like the iPhone 5S, iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6s, phones that are more than six years old!

The key component in Apple's iPhone performance management is the lithium-ion battery. Take it from Apple:

Your iPhone is designed to deliver an experience that is simple and easy to use. This is only possible through a combination of advanced technologies and sophisticated engineering. One important technology area is battery and performance. Batteries are a complex technology, and a number of variables contribute to battery performance and related iPhone performance. All rechargeable batteries are consumables and have a limited lifespan – eventually their capacity and performance decline so that they need to be replaced. Battery aging can contribute to changes in iPhone performance. We created this information for those who would like to learn more.

Each time you charge your phone to 100%, the lifespan of the battery decreases. It takes months for this to become noticeable, but it does happen. Lithium-ion batteries are complicated. Imagine two rooms, one full of people, the other empty. As your iPhone battery uses up charge, these people (electrons) move from one room to the other, until the second room is full and the first is empty. The process of recharging the battery sends all of these people back to the first room, and the process starts over. Each time this happens, the second room gets ever so slightly smaller, and slightly harder to access. This is basically what happens to your iPhone's battery.

So why does Apple slow down iPhones?

This battery aging affects your iPhone's performance. Over time your iPhone becomes less powerful, the battery doesn't last as long, and it can't quite cope with peak performance the way it once did. This regression is amplified by the fact that iOS software is always advancing in the other direction, increasing its power demands and capabilities. The biggest symptom of this issue is unexpected shutdowns. One moment your old iPhone is chugging along with 10, 15, 20, maybe even 30% battery. The next, WHAM, your iPhone switches off... Oh, and surprise, there's no battery left.

No doubt, many of you probably remember the days before iOS 10.2, when that actually used to happen. Do you miss those days? Yeah, me neither.

Wait, so why did everyone get so angry?

Because they didn't tell us. Maybe... a lot of people were genuinely upset that their iPhone was being intentionally slowed down. As many people were angry that Apple did this seemingly in secret, or that at the very least, it didn't announce it.

As far as I'm concerned, only one of these angers is righteous.

Yes, the performance management aspect of iOS does slow down your iPhone slightly. Listed effects as stated by Apple are as follows:

  • Longer app launch times
  • Lower frame rates while scrolling
  • Backlight dimming (which can be overridden in Control Centre)
  • Lower speaker volume by up to -3 dB
  • Gradual frame-rate reductions in some apps
  • During the most extreme cases, the camera flash will be disabled as visible in the camera UI
  • Apps refreshing in the background may require reloading upon launch

But compared to the prospect of having your iPhone randomly shut off in the middle of an important task, or leaving you without a working mode of contact, these are all rather trivial in my opinion. Do you really want to argue, that for instance, having your iPhone's frame rate remain constant whilst scrolling is more important than having your iPhone not randomly conk out, not to reawaken until charged?

As most people seem to note, the real "crime" here was that Apple kept its performance management quiet. Even the most recent French ruling that started this piece stated: "The DGCCRF has indeed shown that iPhone owners had not been informed that the updates of the iOS operating system (10.2.1 and 11.2) they installed were likely to slow down the operation of their device."

Damned if you do, damned if you don't

Of course, as mentioned, there was a lot of outcry at the time over the fact that Apple was intentionally slowing down iPhones, not just that they had kept it on DL.

This leads me to believe that Apple really couldn't have won in this situation. Yes, Apple is reaping the cost of not telling people in the form of fines from various governments, and by having to absorb the cost of a subsidized battery replacement program.

But do you really think that people would have been understanding if Apple had been forthcoming about its plans? This is Apple after all. And people love to hate Apple. Can you imagine the headlines? 'Apple announces it will intentionally slow down older iPhones' - 'Apple forces customers to upgrade by ruining their old devices'. Or worse, imagine if Apple had taken no action, and left us to our own highly unstable devices - 'Negligent Apple lets older phones randomly shut off' - 'Why hasn't Apple issued an update to patch iPhone shutdowns?'.

As a culture, we tend not to approach these sorts of things rationally. The way I see it, Apple could have chosen not to address this issue, leaving users in the pre-iOS 10 wilderness. Apple absolutely made the right decision to address this issue. Its performance management feature in iOS allows more people to use more iPhones for longer than they might have been able to otherwise, offset by slightly diminished performance.

Yes, perhaps Apple could have taken the decision to be more forthcoming about its plans to enable performance management in iOS. It could have told the world that it was about to intentionally slow down its older iPhones. But would the world have been understanding about it? I think not.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9

66 Comments
  • The solution is simple, allow consumers to replace their own batteries. This is what older phones did, and there's no reason why newer phones shouldn't be able to either.
  • You can replace your own battery now. If you want to do it personally, you just need a few tools, which generally come with battery replacement packs, access to YouTube, and a little skill. Or you could take it to any number of tech shops. Or you could have Apple do it. Cost is relative. You likely don't need to worry about voiding the warranty on options one or two, because we are dealing with a device likely out of warranty. If you are suggesting Apple build an iPhone with a removable back for simple battery replacement, that's not happening. It's not happening on any high end Android phones either.
  • That's fine to be honest, as long as it's fairly straightforward and doesn't require disassembling the whole phone
  • The next question in all of this, is now they have software in the phone to detect "non apple" batteries. How come?......Right, gouge their users again. Like I said before, I probably will never NOT have an iphone. The cameras are deadly, the accessories are second to none, but I don't love apple like the second coming of christ.
  • Probably to void the warranty, or deny a repair. Basically if your phone explodes, Apple can say "well it wasn't our battery"
  • I’m sorry but no. I get the slowing down due to the battery issue, but with a perfect battery the devices were MISERABLE to use. My iPad 4, updated to iOS 10, became a heavy, worthless brick of a device that I only have because it’s the only way I can run 32 bit games I still want to play. That had nothing to do with the battery, it was whatever Apple was doing to the OS that killed the performance. This happened with the 3/3G/3GS/4/4S/5/5S/6 devices, and the iPad 2-4. I sold my 6 plus before iOS 12, but my understanding was that it was a huge improvement, which further confirms that it was due to Apple sloppily handling older devices, NOT just because battery health was a problem. Look at the 6S, it has been around coming up on 5 years now and it still runs like a dream, that was NOT the case for any phone before it.
  • No. Apple was not "right" in slowing down older phones. Make it known that your device will have degrading battery life and let the consumer decide if they want their phones slowed down to preserve battery life or not.
  • Apple should have been open about this, and allowed the choice from the start. You can switch it off now, but I wouldn't recommend it unless you have another phone with you for emergencies
  • Agreed, they should have been. Now, think to yourself.....why were they not open about it? Doesn't take a rocket surgeon to figure that out Danny. Come on man. They won't kill you if you go against them. Trust me!
  • Probably because people would jump on the planned obsolescence bandwagon, Apple's been suspected of it for years, so they most likely hid it because people wouldn't believe them. Now that it's not hidden anymore, some people still don't believe them, which again goes back to why they might have hid it in the first place, to avoid misunderstanding or bad press. At the end of the day, they got found out, so they should've been open from the start. It would've hurt them either way, but it would've hurt less.
  • Come on here. You cannot be serious with this pandering excuse for an article. “ When this story first broke out, I was surprised at how much everyone else seemed to be surprised that iPhones are not immune to aging”. In what world were you living? Everyone was angry because Apple was busted for slowing down phones in secret(and likely doing so to encourage more sales of newer phones, despite your arguments to the contrary). How you guys can write this stuff with a straight face .. I don’t know.
  • Apple was busted because they were reducing performance based on battery degradation in secret. Now it's no longer secret, and you can turn it off (although I wouldn't recommend it). It was done for a good reason, but it shouldn't have been secret
  • It was done to sell more iPhones. Believe what you want, if it helps.
  • No good to try to get an idea across to danny that apple did something shady. He is so deep up apple's ahole that only the feet are visible. And yes, that's exactly why apple slowed down phones. To get more people to buy new ones. Since sales were sliding and people were keeping their phones longer, apple said hey.....lets do this. They got caught then came up with the excuse that it was done for the customer.
  • It's a completely valid reason, not an excuse. The shady part was that it was secret, which I mentioned if you had bothered to read my comment and not do a kneejerk reaction
  • no knee jerk reaction here buddy. Only from you defending the great apple.
  • With good reason. They're stopping your phone from turning off randomly, and I think that you'll appreciate that should you ever run into an emergency
  • I completely agree.
  • Never had that problem with ANY phone in the past fanboy.
  • I’ve known a lot of people who have. I haven’t experienced it on my own phone simply because I’ve not kept it long enough, but I’ve seen other phones turn off before the battery is depleted. There’s plenty of topics and research about it online, it’s an interesting read!
  • Technology slows as demands grow higher from sites and apps. Do you really expect your 5 year old phone to run the same as day one? Nothing is like that. Look at a car, should people start suing car companies because mileage starts getting worse over time? Or because it doesn’t run as smooth or quiet as it did when it was new? No........ It’s completely irrational for you to assume that would be for anything. I can tell you that I’ve had my battery replaced a few times on my 6s. It cost me $50 at a local repair shop. When I used to swap batteries out on my old phones they used to cost just as much. So what’s your mind blowing idea on how to deal with this issue?
  • Think about it. Would an iPhone that shuts off halfway through the day be more likely to be replaced, or one that lasts all day at reduced performance. Had Apple wanted to force upgrades, they would have been better off letting the batteries die.
    I can see that being transparent about your engineering solutions is a good thing, but it isn't always that easy to explain to everyone your engineering decisions. Those decisions will undoubtedly come under fire themselves. Whether you pick black or white there will be those that disagree, and they will be vocal about it. So now we have a switch to decide on our own whether we want battery life or performance with an aging iPhone/battery. One more setting that needs to be explained and adds to the hundreds of settings that most people never touch.
    The other option here, and the one that actually surfaced the practice, is go get your battery replaced. You can do that at an Apple store, some other tech shop, or do it yourself. The warranty on phones that were software throttled because of battery degeneration are out of warranty anyway. I think Apple was very generous with their battery replacement program for these aging devices.
  • Ok Mr. Conspiracy Theorist dsignori
  • If Apple wanted to sell more iPhones, why would it try and extend the life of older phones with software updates?
  • Indeed. Maybe @kojackjku could explain it to us?
  • This article is lieterally sick. The author has crossed that line into total delusion, disregarding any fact he needs to, to make his lie seem legit. I feel for anyone who reads this, and takes it into any consideration. This is one of the MOST misleading, fake articles I have ever seen in my life. You should be ashamed, Steve, though I wouldnt be surprised if you use fake names on this joke of a site.
  • What part of the article is misleading? Apple slows down phones based on battery degradation, which prevents your phone turning off unexpectedly. Someone even proved this was the case by replacing the battery in their old iPhone and the performance increased
  • Thats the misleading part. They slow down your phone to prevent it from turning off. The reality they slow down your phone to make you want to buy a new one. They came up with that excuse AFTER they got caught doing it, then baked in a switch to turn it off AFTER THEY GOT CAUGHT. take your head out of tim's ***.
  • I detailed it above, but you are disregarding that most people will consider replacing a phone that doesn't last all day anymore, than one that has just lost performance. Apple actually made keeping the phones longer more viable with the performance throttling.
  • Why don't you educate yourself and look into how lithium-ion batteries work? Then come back and write a valid comment. The misleading part was that they kept it secret
  • Thing is danny boy, I and most other people never had a iphone degrade to the point where it shut off throughout the day. I had one battery actually fail in all the iphones I have owned. It was a iphone 4 where the battery exploded. Other than that, none. My 5, 5s 6s and 8 ALL run through the day. I did however notice a slowdown of my 6s when battery"gate" was narc'ed out. At the point where I was considering getting rid of my phone to a newer model. Low and behold, apple got caught and reversed the "slowing down for my benifit" and my 6s rips again. My son is using it now and it's pretty well as fast as my 8. and battery life on both are on par with each other. So I call bullshit on phones croaking half way through a day of even heavy useage, as I use mine. I get home in the evening after using my phone all day and still have 50% charge or so. They did to slow the phone to get people to buy "faster" phones.
  • You can choose not to believe it if you want, but Apple could've given a very stupid reason. Instead, they gave a reason which made perfect sense, and it was even proven that they were only doing this on degraded batteries by a Youtuber who replaced the battery on his old iPhone and the performance increased. So I'd say Apple is right here, there's evidence to support what they're saying, in both Lithium-ion technology and in someone testing it by replacing their battery
  • keep drinking the kool aid buddy!
  • They gave a reason to deflect. Any stupid reason would be more obvious to what they were really doing. You being a supreme fanboy with your head in the sand would not see what is really going on however.
  • I have my head in various sources detailing Lithium ion batteries and how degraded batteries can cause devices to turn off under too much strain
  • I don't think that the author deserves bursts of flak. I (Dutchman) can see it both ways. Yes, I felt some anger when I learnt of that "slowing down", but it came to me that batteries do age. Moreover, I used to keep my devices charging unless I went to sleep or left my home. My Nexus 5 (Google/LG) and my Galaxy S6 (Samsung) let me down pretty soon due to drained batteries while I was relying on them for navigation using GPS. I remember riding my bicycle at night, some 50 km from home when that Nexus wouldn't wake up anymore. I had relied on it solely. The Galaxy let me down in the freezing fog while touring, despite me having spared it for the occasion. This time, I also had an iPhone and an iPad with me. The iPad had no problem finishing the job. I never got any warning about the aging of batteries of these Android smartphones, nor of any measure taken by Google in Android. I would like to know about the wear of (parts of) seemingly solid-state devices, in order to make a Plan B.
    Well, I happened to notice that the battery of my iPhone 6 had pushed the screen up when I took it up to move the SIM-card to the iPhone Xs that was to succeed it. (I had the battery replaced, but I eventually gave the device away.) I would also like to be better informed about the pros and cons of "quick charging". Apple may well have a durability point in defaulting to low-powered chargers with iPhones. By the way, apart from that battery management, other factors may well contribute to perceived slowing down:
    - the transition to full 64-bit operation (mentioned by @andsoitgoes)
    - new devices having more RAM and a much faster SoC (contrasting with older hardware)
    - apps that get upgraded to benefit from new iOS features (and therefore expect the matching hardware)
    When I began filling my iPad 2 with apps, they were a few MB in size. Now they may take hundreds of MB - not all of them. :-) (Sorry for straying from the topic proper, but in my view it's all related.)
  • Do you have the Tweet/message from @andsoitgoes about the transition to full 64-bit operation? I wouldn't have imagined it would make a significant performance change. Other than that, the increase in hardware specs does mean that Apple can have more freedom with what they can do on the OS, although that will impact older devices. There's also some unoptimized iOS releases due to rushing for a yearly schedule (iOS 7 on the iPhone 4 forever haunts me).
  • Much ado about nothing... “Oh, gee, my old iPhone [that computer in my pocket with more capability than the Apollo space modules...] is slowing down!” Yup, poor baby—knock yourself out and go buy an Android (you deserve it...heh, heh, heh)...
  • The irony is that iPhones last a lot longer than the average Android phone, at least in terms of software support
  • Agreed, and one of the main reasons I like my iphones. My 6s still rocks. It's still the best iphone released. My dad just bought a 6s plus since he is getting older and has some issues with his vision. His 6 is not big enough anymore. I turned it on for the first time yesterday, and boy....apple made a winner in the 6s range!
  • This could have been done better. Some possibilities.
    1) Make the throttling and optional setting. (I'd turn it on!)
    2) Disclose on the pages listing release features.
    3) Announce loudly as a reliability improvement & disclose the performance impact.
    *
    The complainers were off-base, but Apple wasn't smart in their approach.
  • I believe the throttling is optional now, I can't check because the option only appears on phones that have a degraded enough battery
  • I fundamentally disagree with your premise: "As a culture, we tend not to approach these sorts of things rationally. The way I see it, Apple could have chosen not to address this issue, leaving users in the pre-iOS 10 wilderness. " Apple only had an issue to address because they purposely made their batteries difficult to replace in an attempt to encourage upgrading. Apple deserved the fine for slowing down phones. If they actually cared about consumers, the environment, and being ethical, they would have designed their products to be easily fixable, at home, with no special tools.
  • They didn't 'purposely make their batteries difficult to replace'. They had a design vision that led them down that path. I'm syaing making the batteries hard wasn't the goal, it was fallout. They actually aren't that hard to replace anyway, with a little care. It does 'void' the warranty if you do it yourself, a whole different discussion. The devices that were affected by throttling due to battery degredation likely were out of warranty in any case.
  • Hey it’s a simple case of offering the owner of the phone the option of being slowed down or staying as is.
    Just going ahead slowing older phones down without telling anyone simply isn’t a transparent behaviour. Well done France for seeing through Apples elitist claim that they were doing it for the consumer. English experts obviously are not freethinkers as in this article will have you believe that experts have the god given right of deciding what is best for you.
  • I believe the option is provided now, it appears in Settings > Battery when the battery had degraded enough (you can't see it until then). But you're right in that Apple should have made people aware
  • To clarify something important:
    The fix Apple included slowed the system ONLY when the battery was iffy AND the device was being pushed hard. Surfing the web, or checking email, or getting map directions, no difference. Get a replacement battery, no difference. This fix only took effect under those circumstances when the system was likely to crash because of the above two issues. As far as Apple not mentioning this in advance...Duh. Apple, Microsoft, Google, all software companies fix hundreds of things like this every year and don't tell the end user. If they did you'd get a dictionary sized book with each OS update. Apple did NOTHING wrong
    The French court was TOTALLY wrong.
    The people on the web who have b*****d about this are just irrelevant whiners who don't understand the issue.
  • Hey dude! Now now lets not troll consumers for thinking for themselves. This kind of ‘I know best follow my lead’ is not acceptable. That kind of illogical coercion is actually toxic. So please reign in the aggressive terms if you don’t mind. France is not irrelevant, £25 million slap in the chops proves that. So unless you’re some anorak Appletard there is no reason to defend a multimillion corporation that has made obsolescence a sales gimmick that has hitherto swindled the unsuspecting consumer out of £billions. Joker
  • I think your comment is worse than his. There's no gimmick here, the performance degradation prevents your phone from turning off unexpectedly, which you would really appreciate if you're in an emergency situation. Of course, Apple shouldn't have kept it secret, and I think they deserve the fine purely based on the secrecy, but the reason Apple is doing it, is genuinely to benefit the consumer. There's no problem with consumers thinking for themselves if they research the topic, sadly a lot don't and just have a kneejerk reaction
  • Yep another anorak Appletard. What’s going on here this some kind of Apple Mac fan site? Let me get this straight you’re the guy who would like battery replacement reinstated in Apple devices right? One word: obsolescence, means apple don’t wanna give you that option. So how is that not obsolescence? How’s that not a gimmick making your iPhone/ iPad a useless paperweight? Yeah you keep saying you can opt out of being slowed from settings. Yeah you keep saying that apple should have told us so how is my comment worse exactly? Oh yeah I told that imbecile not to be aggressive. So you’re coming out in his defence so I can only assume you are most definitely a closet Appletard. Yep keep giving those morons top dollar for a product that has superior competitors at half the price only to be screwed out of your purchase a few months down the line when the next IOS is released. Ask yourself one question. How come stand-alone devices of competitors don’t screw you over? Example a Samsung J3 still running as fast as ever, not even a flagship device. You’re obviously the genius
  • “So please reign in the aggressive terms if you don’t mind.” Just another “anorak” hypocrite?!
  • What do you mean by “Stand-alone devices”? Most Android phones end support after 2-3 years which means there’s far more obsolescence going on in Android than there is in Apple. Many Android phones now also don’t have replaceable batteries, and yes that could be considered planned obsolescence. Regardless, even your Samsung J3 will suffer unexpected shutdowns if the battery is degraded enough and the phone is still running at full performance. I’m aware that Android phones may or may not reduce the performance based on battery wear, but if they don’t then you’re going to have to replace it much sooner than you would in an iPhone
  • Beg to differ, My 6s slowed down about 3 weeks before apple got found out. Then, magically, it went back to normal speed after the next update. How could I tell? I side by side compared against my previous phone a samsung galaxy. In the beginning my iphone was much faster and smoother, during the time i noticed it being glitchy and slow, the galaxy was quicker and smoother, after the update, my iphone was faster and smooth as butter again. wierd hey? It was to try to make people buy the newer phone, NO OTHER REASON. You can believe what you like, but that WAS the reason. EDIT: This was directed at douglas above, I tried to comment on his remarks but it moved right to the bottom.
  • Your 6S could have slowed down for any number of reasons, and besides your theory doesn’t make sense because Apple are still slowing down phones that have a degraded enough battery, but you now have the ability to toggle it (after Apple got found out 🙂)
  • Guzzle the kool aid fanboy. Drink it down.
  • Apple is still slowing down phones, so the fact that your iPhone went back to normal makes no sense. You probably had a bad iOS update, they happen from time to time
  • So due to the fact that the original battery that Apple provided with the handset is faulty and unreliable, customers should be happy and thankful for having their devices performance cut as a fix?? A company like Apple should have the decency to offer a replacement battery to the owners of the devices still in use instead. This nonsense "But we're doing it for YOU" tactic is just a weak attempt to free them of responsibility. It would be interesting to see an announcement from Tesla's Elon Musk sounding somewhat like: "Dear followers! We just found out that Early Type S models have faulty batteries, which when combined with the ECU's newest irreversible software upgrade, the car will be unreliable and might suddenly switch off in mid drive." Followed by: "But no worries my dear cult! We'll just cut the power delivery in half so we don't need to attend to your dangerous batteries." Then ending with: "Y'all could also just scrap that old heap and buy our brand new model Y or even the Roadster!" I doubt people would just accept that.
  • They did offer a battery replacement. I never got to an apple store to get it done. My 2 6s, are still running at top notch anyways so....no big deal for right now.
  • I assume you are aware that Lithium Ion batteries do age, right? These are not defective/ unreliable batteries, they are old ones. The normal symptoms are not lasting as long, and not providing as much power when stressed. This isn't confined to Apple. You see lots of Android users with older phones using external battery packs as well, just to make it through the day. These days, customer demands call for unibody phones. Yea I hear, we want replaceable batteries, we want a bigger battery even if it makes a phone fatter, but those models don't sell. So, the option once the batterry is no longer viable is to get a new phone, or a new battery. Apple always offered the latter, and even lowered the price dramatically. These were devices beyond warranty. If the battery exhibited issues under warranty, or under Apple Care extension, it just got replaced.
  • The battery isn't faulty nor unreliable, rechargable batteries are consumable items, they all slowly die.
  • For one year yes. As an apologize for the "misunderstanding".
    But nevertheless, they did try to pull it off and did try to justify it. My old SE is also working surprisingly well at the moment as my backup phone, however it's going back in the drawer soon when I've replaced the display on my Motorola I recently smashed. I don't think I will ever get duped into buying a new Apple product again.
    Although great performance when new, all Apple products seem to be planned for early obsolescence. My 8 year old Macbook is a perfect example. When new it was a beast, 2 years ago, a a Windows laptop of same age with half the specs would beat it in every process thrown at it. Same story with my wife's identical laptop
  • Android devices lose software support far earlier than iPhones though. I'm not sure if you've tried doing a fresh install of macOS, that could help. If you really think macOS is the problem then you can install Windows or Linux and see if that speeds it up
  • Btw. I'm not saying apple is the only one doing this. There is a thing around every January or February called the Samsung flu. Guaranteed your galaxy will slow to a crawl. About two months after the next version came out you older phone was "magically" fast again. Benchmarked proof of this has circulated the net Round the time of the galaxy 3 to 7.
  • If Apple are doing it, they're sure doing a good job at hiding it, because for phones that are being slowed down due to battery degradation, you can turn it off, and iPhones are supported for much longer than Android devices. Samsung don't need to slow down their phones because you're probably going to lose software support before the battery is degraded anyway
  • What better defense of updated OSes weakening the batteries of older phones than to say that one's just following the law preventing one from doing anything to mitigate the aging of batteries?
    Apple ruining batteries to increase sales was BS to begin with. Now France is adding idiocy. Not that the French government maybe doesn't have far more important things to attend to -- ongoing demonstrations over actual, significant failures of the state for one.
  • Apple hasn't ruined or weakened any batteries, batteries get weaker by design, they're a consumable item.