iOS 14.6 battery life is dire for tons of people – will it get the attention it needs with WWDC looming?

iOS 14 Widgets
iOS 14 Widgets (Image credit: Rene Ritchie)

Battery life is one of those things that you don't really notice until it's gone. And as fast as fast chargers are, having a device whose battery life you can almost see falling out of its Lightning port is no fun at all. That's the situation a ton of people have found themselves in after installing iOS 14.6 – including yours truly.

People have taken to Twitter, Reddit, and even Apple's own support forums to seek help after iOS 14.6 ravaged their battery life. One YouTube even ran tests on the iOS 14.6 RC1 and RC2 releases to see what was going on and, sadly, they're both as bad as each other. That RC2 release is what everyone received as the public update, too. With RC2 having arrived just days after RC1, I can't help but wonder if Apple knew something was amiss and tried to fix it.

It didn't fix it.

Some people have reported that their battery stats are odd in a few ways, not least random apps supposedly eating battery life like there's no tomorrow.

It is unclear if there is a specific issue with iOS 14.6 causing the issue, one screenshot shared to Reddit noted an abnormally high level of background activity from the Music App, whilst others have suggested AirTags could be the cause. Other users have said that the Podcasts app and AirPlay have been causing very high battery drain, with at least one user finding "a big difference" in performance after reinstalling the app.

My own experience is similar. My iPad Pro (11-inch – I know you were wondering) has suffered from shocking battery life as well. So much so that I took to Twitter and shared a screenshot that claimed Find My was using all of my battery reserves. I disabled Find My and it still used all of my battery.

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I've since gone the nuclear route and deleted everything, starting afresh. I haven't even restored from a backup and as someone who tests a lot of apps, that's a painful experience indeed. It's too early to say whether things have improved, but I've a sneaking suspicion they haven't.

That is to say I, we, everyone will need Apple to fix this thing. With iOS 15's beta program just around the corner and iOS 14.7 already in the middle of its own run of betas, will Apple have the time needed to diagnose what's going on and fix it? I hope so. We all hope so.

Oh, who am I kidding? I'll have iOS 15 installed this time next week and it'll be a miracle if my iPad even turns on, let alone lasts long enough to use!

What I should do is buy a new test device for iOS 15. I really ought to check out the best iPad Pro deals and treat myself, right?

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.