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Bluetooth and Wi-Fi Aren't Fully Disabled When Off in iOS 11 Control Center (support.apple.com)
162 points by tambourine_man on Sept 20, 2017 | hide | past | favorite | 143 comments

This is actually fantastic, I am really happy about this.

Two main reasons (1) If you disable Wi-Fi its re-enabled when you goto a new location. Very often I disable wifi to temporarily get off a bad network in an area, and then curse when I get home and stream a 1GB video over 3G

(2) Much more user friendly for initiated actions

(3) You can still fully disable it by going into settings, but the quick-off is more like you expect.

Great work, Apple.

> This is actually fantastic, I am really happy about this.

This is not fantastic, my phone is lying to me. I was wondering what the bug was because I turned off Bluetooth and it kept turning back on every damn time I got near my car. I want it on when I want it on and not anytime else.

Icons and OSes that lie to user make it tougher to understand what's going on. I expect the control center to tell the truth and do what I want. There is no indication that the settings and control center are different. This is a user hostile decision.

Cruddy work, Apple... now I get to answer questions about this psychotic crud.

> my phone is lying to me.

If you force touch the UI, it does say "Not Connected" when you hit the button, not "Disabled."

I can understand the confusion, because they have re-used an old UI element for a new purpose, but there's no reason the button should mean "Disable Radio" rather than "Disconnect." And as cptide mentions, the button now has three states: blue for connected, grey for disconnected, grey with a line through for disabled. Once you know this, I think it makes a lot of sense.

If you want the old behavior, it's still there in settings, where the on-off toggle will turn off the radio itself.

Personally, I much prefer the new system (I far more often just want to disconnect from the current network/devices than disable it entirely), and think the new control center is much improved over the old one.

Problem being not all iOS 11 users have force touch-enabled devices. I have the iPhone 6, for example, so all I have to go on is the Control Center button icons which are misleading. Apple really should have either mentioned this change in the Tips app or not enabled it by default but instead given users an option.

Additionally, it should be noted that leaving Bluetooth always on just add another attack surface to my phone and consumes unnecessary energy since I don’t own any Bluetooth accessories. Really wondering what the heck Apple was thinking here not making this a setting and enabling it by default.

On non-3d touch devices you just tap and hold until the action triggers.

That's handy to know, thank you.

Looking at this popup control though, the only indication that, for example, wifi is merely no longer connected versus turned off is the text under the icon, which, had I not been aware of this issue, I would probably not have bothered to read.

However, even reading the text under the button, "Not Connected" is ambiguous given the previous behavior of the button. In other words, without additional context, "Not Connected" probably means "Turned Off" to the majority of users. It's only when you get pedantic about things that it becomes clear that tapping the wifi icon in the Control Center in iOS 11 and seeing the text "Not Connected" means my wifi is still on and that I'm just no longer connected to a wifi network.

^^ Furthermore, I'd be 100% OK with this change if I'd at least been made aware of it. However, the more I think about the way this was handled by Apple, the more it really just seems like UX arrogance: Someone decided that my phone's Bluetooth and wifi should always be on, and they changed existing functionality accordingly and with no indication to me as the user that things are different now.

Not sure how else this can be taken??

They could have used 3d touch. That would have made a lot of sense, I agree.

> If you want the old behavior, it's still there in settings, where the on-off toggle will turn off the radio itself.

Could a setting to revert the behavior not have been provided? Instead of forcing an entirely new behavior on existing users? Now I'm trying to figure out how to ensure my phone doesn't auto update to 11.

It's a fair request, but there are so many areas of the OS that have small decisions like this, if there were a setting for all of them... Settings.app is already a little burdened under its own weight (though the search bar has helped a bit).

The set-up process for a new iPhone is also reaching crazy levels, with so many decisions for new users to make.

Don't really know what the solution to this is to be honest -- Linux-style config files maybe? :P

You don't deserve the downvotes but, honestly, it's a pretty techie view of the world in which everything everywhere should have a zillion customizable settings to tweak and tune every aspect of interactions/user experience. I sometimes appreciate this myself. But, most of the time, I overall prefer that someone has created a streamlined experience and made decisions for me.

I don't pay an excessive premium to Apple to make poor decisions for me. I could avoid touch bar and USB C by just not buying their new products. I can't avoid poor decisions pushed on me through updates for products I've already paid for.

Which is why having choice of products to buy is a great thing. By all means buy platforms that give you a greater degree of customization if that's your preference. But understand that different people have different priorities and one path isn't inherently better than the other.

The phone will automatically download the update, but not install it. To delete it, go to settings->general->storage and icloud usage->Manage Storage (there are two buttons that say this, click the top one). If the update downloaded, it should be there. Tap on it and click delete.

The other thing you can do is install a tvOS beta configuration profile. This will make your phone look for tvOS updates rather than iOS updates, which it will not install because they're not for ios. I won't post a link here, but it should be fairly straightforward to find.

When you enable airplane mode, you can actually see WiFi and Bluetooth crossed out as opposed to grayed out. So there is a difference in UI, but I agree - this is not intuitive to the user.

> Icons and OSes that lie to user make it tougher to understand what's going on.

Isn't the Apple approach that you just don't have to understand because the OS and their inventors know what's good for you? The main argument I hear from Apple users is that they don't have to care about anything and it works.

If you would really want to understand your mobiles OS, you would surely look towards other OSes.

The issue isn’t understanding the OS. The issue is a misleading and/or poorly designed UI.

>you would surely look towards other OSes.

I know i will

> (3) You can still fully disable it by going into settings, but the quick-off is more like you expect.

For me, I expect off to be off. What annoys me about this change is that the on\off behaviour is now asymmetric. If I turn off Wi-Fi in Settings, I can turn it back on via Control Centre but I now can't turn it off via Control Centre.

My preference is always to leave Wi-Fi off, turn it on when I want to use it, and then turn it off when I'm finished. This change makes doing that slower and clumsier.

>My preference is always to leave Wi-Fi off, turn it on when I want to use it, and then turn it off when I'm finished. This change makes doing that slower and clumsier.

It's exactly this micro-management that they try to obliterate, similar to this:


Reminds me of this: https://xkcd.com/1172/

I think for the majority of users this is a really insightful change that addresses one of the biggest use cases the switch had (temporarily disable WiFi to get away from a bad connection) and one of the biggest issues it had for that use case (it was easy to turn it off and waste large amounts of relatively expensive wireless data)

>My preference is always to leave Wi-Fi off, turn it on when I want to use it, and then turn it off when I'm finished. This change makes doing that slower and clumsier.


But the good Apple developers believe that this way your experience will be somehow inferior:

From the article: >For the best experience on your iOS device, try to keep Wi-Fi and Bluetooth turned on.

Wifi being off definitely reduces the performance of Location services.

In my parking garage the car charger needs to be activated via an app, and it needs to detect your location as within 100ft of the charger. Without WiFi, my location accuracy shows up as almost +-1 mile and I can't turn it on. As soon as I turn on WiFi it instantly snaps to exit of the garage (probably from correlating detecting apartment wifi hotspots along with my car's hotspot and my location as I leave the garage)

>In my parking garage the car charger needs to be activated via an app, and ...

Which is a good example of a specific case where the feature is useful, and noone - I believe - is contrary to it in an absolute way.

But the parent commenter surely has his reasons to keep Wi-Fi off unless he wants it used, and this change does create an asimmetry in the way the thing is managed in the (now three) states of on/off/almost on.

It's not fantastic for me. I'd like to off wifi from the control screen.

iOS can be configured to automatically switch to LTE if it detects you’re on a low quality wifi connection. No need to turn off wifi for that.

I think iOS needs to be a lot more aggressive with this, in both directions (switching because of poor LTE and because of poor WiFi). If it were better, I don't think I'd never actually need to touch the WiFi toggle.

The problem here is that a lot of people are on limited data plans. So if wifi is poor in one corner of my home, I dont want to accidentally chew up half my monthly data allowance.

This absolutely happened to me once, at work.

Which was really funny, because I was downloading craploads of music specifically before I left the office so I wouldn't chew up my mobile data cap.

I didn't know the "switch to 4G if the wifi is bad" option even existed, much less was enabled.

Where is this setting? I remember it being on an old beta (7/8) but I thought it was removed?

Edit: Found it. "Wi-Fi Assist" in Settings > Cellular / Mobile Data > Scroll past all the apps > "Wi-Fi Assist"

iOS won't detect when I'm on a good WiFi connection but its ADSL link has decent ping yet is much much slower (10Mbps/0.6Mbps) than what I would get with LTE (40~80Mbps both ways) at the same location. I'm on a 100GB plan so I could care less about data use, and I have FTTH (300Mbps/100Mbps+sub-10ms ping) at home so I want WiFi there but always forget to toggle it back on. This UI solves it for me, although I wished the 3D Touch UI would allow quick access to the third, disabled state.

Unfortunately this isn't a good option. My Pixel XL on Project fi is supposed to do this. It never does it when it should. Never. I have yet to see a phone handle the tradeoff well.

I am glad we found the guy!

I make it forget bad networks so it wont connect to them by default your workflow is poor.

Sometimes the bad network is my network, for example when I’m standing in my driveway. It’s still close enough to pick up my wifi but it doesn’t actually load anything. Or my office Wi-Fi once I get down to the lobby, but before I leave the building. Good for you if this never happens, but it’s a real problem.

I agree that is a problem. But why do we accept that human intervention (control center => disable WiFi) is the correct step to resolve the standing-on-your-driveway problem. Should iOS11 just figure out how to automatically disconnect from WiFi signals that aren’t actually supporting data throughput?

Why are you accepting that there can be a concept of “picking up WiFi” but at the same time “doesn’t load anything”? That state is fundamentally flawed and shouldn’t even exist.

iPhones have a setting named "Wifi Assist" where the phone automatically uses the cellular modem when the internet over Wifi doesn't work.

You should be able to connect to "broken" Wifi networks because you might actually want to access devices on the wifi network. For example, I want to be able to print things (my printer is on my home network) even if the cable modem is down. So my phone should just use cellular modem for internet, but still connect to the "broken" wifi.

You can tell iOS to not connect automatically to a known network by disabling auto-join for that SSID. I do this so that it doesn't connect to "Free WiFi Secure", which can not be forgotten since it comes from my mobile operator's SIM (authenticates with EAP-SIM).

your post needs some punctuations

    I make it forget bad networks, so it wont connect to them by default. your workflow is poor.

You actually forgot to capitalize "your" after the period but mentioning it isn't terribly useful because the intent is clear. This is also true of my original post.

Posts consisting solely of grammar advice where there was no chance of miscommunication aren't helpful and just adds noise. It appears as if the intent is to project ones own superiority instead of educating.

When I turn off WiFi, I expect it to remain off and not just decide to turn back on whenever I find a new network.

Any other behavior is dark UX.

Ignoring the security implications, it has implications on battery life.

That button is no longer for turning it off. They've changed the meaning of the button.

I get that if you're used to the previous meaning it could be annoying, but it's not like it's actually saying one thing and doing another.

>They've changed the meaning of the button.

It's also not the same button technically: they've redesigned the whole panel.

Problem is that they never informed users that they’d changed this behavior. That button no longer does what it’s always done, which violates the Principle if Least Surprise: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Principle_of_least_astonishm....

I imagine it will be documented in the iOS 11 changes - I mean, as I understand it, it hasn't been publicly released yet.

There's a balance to be made between least surprise and the benefits of being able to evolve a design. (Another factor with any OS is there's a constant stream of new users coming to it for the first time)

> I mean, as I understand it, it hasn't been publicly released yet.

Not sure what you mean by this. iOS 11 was released on 09-19-2017, so not sure what you're saying is still awaiting a public release?

Regarding your second point, definitely agreed. However, to me this seems almost beyond the scope of Least Surprise and more akin to the Windows 10 fiasco where clicking the red X close button actually accepted the update and installed Windows 10. [1]

Bottom line: there are certain established UI conventions (i.e., an on/off button turns things on and off) that you really can't change without causing a lot of issues and user frustration. And if you do change them, please alert your users. Otherwise, it seems shady and is definitely a UX faux pas.

[1] http://bgr.com/2016/05/25/microsoft-windows-10-upgrade-trick...

>> I mean, as I understand it, it hasn't been publicly released yet.

> Not sure what you mean by this. iOS 11 was released on 09-19-2017, so not sure what you're saying is still awaiting a public release?

I meant that I thought it hadn't but wasn't sure -- I haven't been following it closely.

Oh yes, it is a much better experience now that I have to swipe six times to reach the settings and turn off WiFi, then do the same to turn it back on.

So i guess you liked Microsoft Clippy too?

Instead of fixing the UI to make you empowered, it will decide what is better for you? great!

Sarcasm aside, I hated this feature until I used it a few weeks, but now I'm a fan. I would argue that this UI is empowering users, in the sense that it allows them to do something that they couldn't before (in contrast to Clippy, who usually suggested things you already knew how to do).

For example, on a daily basis, I usually spend my time in one of 4 places: - A location with good WiFi and good LTE reception (expectation: all services on) - A location with bad WiFi and good LTE reception (expectation: WiFi off) - A location with excellent WiFi and atrocious LTE reception (expectation: cellular off) - A location with bad WiFi and zero LTE reception (expectation: all off)

Previously, I had to manually toggle WiFi, cellular, or airplane mode on or off in these various locations, nearly always forgetting to change it again later. This is mainly a problem with turning things off - if I'm in airplane mode, I might not notice that I'm incommunicado for an hour or more if I'm engrossed in a task, whereas leaving everything on when I'm in the metaphorical dungeon will only cost me a few % of battery, at most.

However, by defaulting services to on after I move locations, my phone reverts to a communication device at the expense of a marginal amount of battery life. Think of it as a 4-square: 1) services on, actively using; 2) services off, actively using; 3) services on, not using; 4) services off, not using.

In cases 1 & 2, I'm actively using it and I don't care what it does as long as it functions (i.e. I can manually disconnect from shitty WiFi myself, so data will load again). In case 3, I lose some battery life for my inattention, but no big deal - I can still easily make it all day on a charge. In case 4, I'm SOL until I remember to turn them on again.

This behavioral change in iOS 11 moves some of my time from case 4 to case 3, which is a tradeoff I am willing to make.

I hope this helps to illustrate the alternative perspective to yours a bit more clearly.

> A location with bad WiFi and good LTE reception (expectation: WiFi off)

Why are you not insisting that the OS simply disconnect on its own quickly in such scenarios? Why do you accept that manual user action is the right solution? If the phone automatically and quickly dropped a WiFi the instant it doesn’t support data, this problem wouldn’t exist. Instead Apple expects users to get involved in that problem and has now overcomplicated what should be a very simple switch.

>no big deal

Its a UI anti-pattern, because they're changing the definition of off from 'its off, end of topic' to 'well, its not really off, only disconnected, and you can not really tell what is what' ..

So, no big deal. Until you get hacked over wifi when you thought it was off all the time ... or your battery discharges 20% faster than you thought it should, etc.

>So, no big deal. Until you get hacked over wifi when you thought it was off all the time

If you can get hacked "over wifi" then you have bigger problems than whether the toggle makes it on or off. Assuming that you turn it on, ever, that is.

Besides, you can tell if it's on and off. Off has a strikethrough over the icon.

For 7 years I've been turning Wifi Off using Control Centre, and now I have to un-learn that behaviour, or modify my own needs to have Wifi 'disabled but not off'.

I don't think this is as positive as some people think. I'll "turn off Wifi", but packets can still flow. The device can still be observed remotely.

>it will decide what is better for you?

Regardless of this particular implementation, isn't that the whole point of computing? To get the software to be smarter and decide what's better -- all the way to AI assistants.

Bonzi Buddy was even better, it's the original "clippy that doesn't go away"

It's amazing how much functionality Bonzi Buddy had on a 486 that we apparently need cloud super-computing (google now, amazon echo, siri, etc) for now.

Not a fan. Off is off simple as that. It’s also really confusing to have two actions one in control centre the other in settings behaving in a different way but no cue to say they do.

Another “feature” irking me on iOS 11 is the disabling of flash or the flashlight/torch below 15% battery. If I want to use the torch or flash then I’ll decide if there’s enough battery left

> If I want to use the torch or flash then I’ll decide if there’s enough battery left

Lithium batteries are worn a lot by high amperage when they are already close to empty. They are protecting the battery from wearing out too fast.

If I am in the dark, and really need to use that torch, the batteries are the least of my worries.

"Enabling the flash below 15% charge may cause additional wear on your battery and should only be used in emergencies. Proceed?"

Not a fan of how this was implemented either, but the cue is the descriptive text under the button. If you do toggle Bluetooth or WiFi off from the settings app, it even uses a different icon in the control center.

I didn't realize the flash was disabled, that is super annoying.

On the plus side, i'm extremely happy about the car bluetooth based DND mode.

Alternative answer: This prevents your phone from completely dying if you turn the light on, forget, and shove it in your pocket/bag. That's a great feature in and of itself. Hell, i've accidentally triggered the flashlight outside in the sun and not noticed before i pocketed the phone before.

For anyone that is running into this. The quickest way to get into settings so you can turn these radios off is to force touch the settings icon. Once you do that, you will see the different radios in the menu. You can simply tap into it and toggle the radio off. This, of course, assumes you have force touch enabled iPhone.

For what it is worth, this is a big privacy violation. I am really surprised you can't at least force touch on the control center and turn these things off. I hope someone at Apple is reading this and adds that back in.

That's still more steps from how it was.

Before: Swipe up for Control Center, tap to toggle WiFi radio, tap or swipe to return to current app.

Now: Switch from current app or close it, Force Touch Settings, tap WiFi, tap on the toggle in Settings.app, switch back to app you were on. The UX here is worse.

I can't seem to find a way to disable except in going to settings > wifi Where do you see these options in the force touch menu?

If you force touch the settings icon on your home screen, you will see Wifi, Bluetooth, etc. Just tap the menu item to go right to the settings screen.

Thanks :)

Thanks for the tip at least.

> For the best experience on your iOS device, try to keep Wi-Fi and Bluetooth turned on.

For the best protection on any kind of device, try to keep unnecessary attack vectors turned off.

what ever happened to the principle of least astonishment?

people are currently used to disabling wifi meaning disabling wifi.

>what ever happened to the principle of least astonishment?

I dunno, they actually measured real world usage patterns from millions of real users and did usability tests on their own premises, and found that this is the least astonishing for the majority, who doesn't need to wonder why AirDrop doesn't work or why their Apple Watch is not connecting?


Is this how they conceived the touchbar, too?


As I said, I dunno.

Or, to reuse a variation of an old saying, "off means off".

Seriously. This is a neat feature, but completely violates POLA.

Depends on the users.

If they're like most I know, they'll be scratching their heads why e.g. AirDrop doesn't work when they have the wi-fi turned off.

So this could be less astonishing for them.


Ahh thank you.

Any other brand on the face of the planet:

Poor decision, potential security hazard, drains battery life, contrary to user freedom, sneaky, you name it.


Contrived justification of how this is genius on Apple's part and actually the behavior you wanted without even realizing it.

Ironically, 4 hours later, this story also currently on the front page was submitted: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15299165

I participated in the beta program and I thought of it as a bug first and reported it. Nothing happened except it turned out a feature in the release version. Why didn't they integrate "turn completely off" in the long press sub menu instead? NO, now I need to go all the way to settings and turn it off. I don't get it.

I wish they’d also fix the problem of Apple Pencil draining when in bag with the iPad - it seems to think it’s being used and is trying to transmit to the iPad. I’ve been turning off Bluetooth to deal with this stupidity, now I have to turn on airplane mode to actually turn it off properly.

Not a proper fix, but a workaround is to turn off Bluetooth then immediately turn it back on. This disconnects the Apple Pencil, which allows it to keep its charge (for weeks in my experience). With the new iOS update it sounds like you'll need to turn airplane mode on then off instead, which is a bit more annoying (but better than leaving airplane mode on the whole time).

I think the functionality makes a lot of sense. But it sure would have been nice to indicate what’s going on in the UI somehow. Maybe not reuse the familiar icons to indicate a new thing? Or, totally crazy idea, labels!

Clicking it could easily turn the icon into a timer, sort of like how apps show download/install progress. It's WiFi Snoozing!

This is a feature I would love. Ideally with a prompt "do you want to forget [current network]?" if you're connected to one because I'm probably turning it off because it's poor quality or I can't be bothered with the sign in process.

As it is, the icons grey out when you “disable” them from control centre, and have a line through them when actually off(which is how they looked before).

Affordances like that went into the grave with Steve, as far as I can tell.

I believe this is also a ploy to keep people pinging wifi routers. Can't say for sure, but that was my gut reaction when I discovered this during beta testing.

What would be the point? If it's for tracking, you can do that without actually connecting to the networks, just by monitoring passively, like Android does.

Yes. You must have the modem on. Before it would fully disable WiFi modem. Now it simply looks to be off. Perception is that it’s not connecting but keeps modem on to keep pinging routers passively. But again, that’s why I would do it if I were Apple. Not sure why they are doing it for sure.

More reliable map data to compete against Google Maps w/ wifi location assist?

Yes, but you can do that without actually connecting to the Wifis, you just scan passively like Android does.

This sucks - I keep it off because as I ride a train it's connecting to every station wifi and losing it just as quick, completely breaking connectivity.

Perhaps the new TCP multipath stuff will make WiFi Assist work in these cases but I'm not holding my breath.

Maybe disable automatic joining of random networks? I don't use an iPhone, but I bet it has a setting for that. There's also the security implication of automatically joining unknown networks.

Will that help?

They're not random networks though. Sometimes I do use the station wifi (so it's in my network list), but that's if I'm parked there for 15 minutes waiting for a train and want to stream a YouTube channel or download a podcast. Just not when I'm on the train passing it.

I think another person mentioned a possible solution in a different thread. Just tell it to not auto-join those specific networks. It's not necessarily ideal, but it should work.

I believe they gave you directions on how to do it, in the other thread about the exploits. I'm not really spying, I just happened to just finish reading that thread and noticed the train similarities.

That should solve it for you. I'd find that behavior maddening. Fortunately, that's not a likely problem for me.

Yeah I just saw that comment after I replied here. As you say, not ideal but it should help at least.

You can turn off auto-join for specific networks.

Having read that KB page, I don't really care for Apple's explanation on this, but it's really messy from a UX point of view after being used to the previous way of working. I have the habit of turning off WiFi most of the time to save on battery usage. I know when and where I'm in a place where selected WiFi networks are available, and I don't like having the radio on all the time.

I'm not buying new phones every year or getting batteries replaced - so taking advantage of any and most battery saving techniques (while having the device usable for my needs) is very important to me.

What's even more annoying is this - if I open an app that may need network access but cal also work or open up without that, now the device prompts me with a list of nearby WiFi networks and I have to choose cancel because I'm not going to connect to some random network! This is a serious security issue, IMO. Many people might inadvertently tap on available WiFi networks and suffer through password prompts on protected networks or get connected to some rogue network.

Forcing users to go to Settings to turn the radios off defeats the purpose of having an easily accessible Control Center for many users.

I seriously believe Apple botched this one, and hope there will at least be some way to get the old behavior (like it did with the removal and reinstating of Camera Roll).

Simply turn off "Ask to Join Networks" and you will never see the WiFi popup you refer to.

I believe having this off is default behavior since at least iOS 9.


I always had this option off. Now I went into settings and see that it's on. It's frustrating that an upgrade changes things and also requires the user to take specific actions to get it back to how it was (after the upgrade, I had to sign in to the App Store, to Game Center, and a few other things that were already setup).

I always take it to airplane mode to disable all, I don't think any company can risk that.

Are we sure about this - you can enable Bluetooth and WiFi in Airplane mode - will this still work as before now?

Yes, you can enable both in Airplane mode. Just checked it

Well, that explains the battery life tanking.

Battery life is always bad right after installing a new major iOS release. Every time. Give it a couple days, it’ll probably be fine. Most of the time, turning off wifi to preserve battery is more superstition than real.

In fact, turning off Wi-Fi can hurt battery life. LTE requires more power, GPS kicks on more often, and if you have an Apple Watch, data transfer is forced to use Bluetooth which means both devices remain in a high powered state for longer.

Bluetooth is an order of magnitude less power per KB than wifi

Yes but it’s slow. While your Bluetooth is transferring the data slowly, the entire rest of the system is burning power while it waits.

depends on the sleep states, and how much data is shifted.

> Most of the time, turning off wifi to preserve battery is more superstition than real.

This is not true in my experience. Having the WiFi radio on while network connectivity (including LTE/3G) isn't used hurts the battery runtime. It may be true for Bluetooth Low Energy, but not WiFi. Even when "disconnected" from a network, the WiFi radio now keeps looking for networks soon after the disconnect (I did see a "searching for network" message below the WiFi button in Control Center).

I'm not too keen to hear this news, but there is a tradeoff in that now you can quickly enable low power mode from control center. I still would like a way to entirely disable these connections at times, but in terms of battery there's a bit of give and take.

You could always quicky toggle Low Power mode w Siri.

What really makes voice interfaces superior, IMHO, is the degradation of the UI.

By making one worse, the other is relativily better.

Don’t try to tell that to the iOS Beta subreddit on reddit. They swear up and down that there is absolutely no battery loss from having your WiFi and Bluetooth enabled even when not connected. To even question this is considered heresy.

That’s because the only battery loss is negligible

> It's 5 AM local time.

What?! Why???

Huh, I thought it was a bug. Sometimes the volume levels of AssistiveTouch and Control Center are in sync (iPhone SE) and sometimes they aren’t. I wonder whether that’s another hidden feature.

This is especially problematic because stores track your movements via wifi [1], even if you haven't connected to any networks. Now I have to go to Settings to actually turn off wifi and defeat this type of tracking. Terrible.

1: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/15/business/attention-shopper...

One hand gives, the other takes away. :)

I'm kind of ambivalent to this issue, although I do think it's a regression that they use the same buttons to accomplish different tasks, and especially since it's kind of confusing that you think it's off but it's actually not truly off. I'm hopeful (but know it probably won't happen) that long pressing or force touching the buttons in the bigger menu from the Control Center will let you disable instead of "turn off".

I know it's against etiquette to comment on downvotes, but I wish they would reply rather than rage-drive-by downvote perfectly reasonable responses like this.

This seems like a pretty heavy-handed violation of the UX Principle of Least Surprise [1] given how those Control Center buttons have historically behaved.

[1] https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Principle_of_least_astonishm...

It would be nice if they made it a different icon like say a wifi symbol with a little timer on it.

I like this, even though the UI is shit as it lies to me.

The important fact is, if you really want to disable WIFI or Bluetooth, you can still do so from the settings (not control center). This is mentioned at the bottom of the article.

What’s the reasoning behind connecting WiFi / Bluetooth at 5AM?

Not burning through limited data plan when a user wakes up in the morning I think. Maybe also linking back to the Bluetooth speakers by your bed for alarm/morning tunes.

Probably because you’re sleeping?

iOS tried to hide file system from you once, which was brought back later. Now iOS tries to hide wireless hardware from you?

That's the very purpose of software -- to hide the hardware from you.

And the file system never came back -- an abstraction that looks like a file access dialog came back.

This is the same thing that happens in Android by default.

No it isn't. If I turn off WiFi from the pull down menu, it stays off.

Android scans, but it doesn't connect again just because you walked to another location or it's 5AM. Auto-connection does stay disabled.

Yes it is. "Scanning always available" is on by default. You can disable it by going:

Settings -> Wifi -> Press the gear icon -> "Scanning always available"

Same for Bluetooth, but I don't remember where to turn it off.

I'm on Android 7.1.1 and that setting isn't there.

The page after the gear icon only has Saved Networks, Network Notifications, Auto Network Switch (that's for Wi-Fi to data and back) and Keep Wi-Fi On During Sleep.

I don't know if it means it's buried somewhere else or it behaves like it should.

Edit: it's in Location (which I keep off), the 3 dots menu, Scanning. Wi-Fi Scanning and Bluetooth scanning, both are off maybe because I disabled location. But would those work even with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth off?

Yes, the scanning works even when the wifi is "off". But it's fully passive, not actually connecting to the networks.

This is not true.

It isn't, but can you give an example?

"For the best experience on your iOS device, try to keep Wi-Fi and Bluetooth turned on." Oh really?

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