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Apple Confirms It Degrades Your Old iPhone (forbes.com)
73 points by kjhughes on Dec 20, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 40 comments

WTF, from 1400mhz to 600?! This is a one hundred percent push of new product onto people with a good preemptive coverup!

If a person uses their iPhone regularly, they will go through the battery cycles that Apple defined and he or she is a loyal customer, hence the usage. No one knows that you "suppose to" update the battery and it's not easy. So, people just buy new phones.

I am amazed that everyone is just cool with this. It is an extremely clever strategy and results in billions in extra sales for Apple.

I just wish they'd been more transparent - perhaps a message in the battery section of settings saying "your performance may be impacted because of your degraded battery. It's recommended you replace it" or something.

New batteries are $119AU which I think is a reasonable price to pay after two years or so.

Everyone knows components in cars need replacing, including batteries, so I think people can be reasoned with in to accepting the same is for consumer goods you want to keep beyond the average phone contract term.

"I just wish they'd been more transparent "

I don't see it as a lack of transparency. That smacks of underhand and fraudulent behaviour. I won't buy another iPhone.

In a similar vein, you can no longer move photos from your computer to your iPhone unless you subscribe to the paid Cloud service. iTunes will no longer allow you to do that.

Since when was this restriction imposed ?


119 for a $5 battery is not reasonable.

With installation and warranty on the work carried out it's entirely reasonable.

That's just bullshit overhead that Apple likes to bake in. How about a removable battery so customers arent screwed every 2 years?

Like a car you're welcome to do it yourself, or take it somewhere else if you think it's a better deal.

Edit: just got a quote for an iphone 7+ battery replacement from one of the mall kiosks here: $120. If there is so much fat in the cost surely they'd at least undercut Apple by $20 to get the business.

Removable batteries are a completely different conversation but you can still buy phones with them so go ahead and indulge yourself.

I bought a replacement battery kit for my non-Apple phone on ebay for about $AU15 - it came with tools to jimmy open the case and unscrew the housing.

Undoubtedly genuine Apple batteries may be better quality but that's still ~$100 for labour.

I mean I know this is supposed to be a hacker community and all, but there is no way I'd bother. Housemate did his girlfriend's iPhone 5 and just ruined it.

You're not only paying for the labour, but also a guarantee the phone will work as intended after and warranty on the replacement. $100 is cheap for that.

> Housemate did his girlfriend's iPhone 5 and just ruined it.

Because it is designed to prevent user from replacing battery, so you pay $100 for opening the lid, taking out the battery, putting in the new one, and closing the lid. $100 is nowhere near cheap for something that should be safe to do for the user.

The user replaceable battery is gone - get over it. We can only deal with what actually exists.

$100 _is_ cheap for the phone as it currently stands.

> The user replaceable battery is gone - get over it.

Only if you're Apple's fanboy. Virtually anybody else still has replaceable battery.

Only the LGv20 has a replaceable battery out of all the flagships.


Galaxy note 4 came out in 2014 - it is irrelevant to the conversation of buying a new phone. You can only get removable batteries in a 1 year old flagship or midrange devices now - feel free to buy them if you feel so strongly about it.

Please don’t use accusations like “fanboy” and “suckers like you” it’s rude and in bad faith.

I’ve had about a dozen phones over the last decade including Samsung phones, LG nexus phones, HTC phones and even a Palm Pixi at one point. There is no fanboying here - and you’re just a jerk for making such a pointlessly derailing smear.

By having to rely on the fanboy smear it’s clear that you have nothing else to rely on.

So even Apple has now recognized that their price was unreasonable and bad for customers. https://www.apple.com/iphone-battery-and-performance/

"Apple is reducing the price of an out-of-warranty iPhone battery replacement by $50 — from $79 to $29 — for anyone with an iPhone 6 or later whose battery needs to be replaced, starting in late January and available worldwide through December 2018. Details will be provided soon on apple.com."

I paid $10 for my brand new Galaxy Note 4 battery and it took 30 seconds to replace. My note 4 isn't slow at all either.

It's the end of Moore's law and they are going to start pulling this stuff so you upgrade, because the new phones just aren't that much better. Meanwhile, I'll stick to Note 4s still they stop making them and I can't get them used. Perfect phone, imho.

Was it an actual Samsung one?

Off-brand batteries can be dodgy and not have the correct protection circuitry.

I trusted the 258 reviews at 4 1/2 stars ( https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B072KJRJ45 ). I have had it for 6 months. It works great and I haven't had any problems.

A co-work of mine sent me this article after his iPhone 6S slowed down considerably after installing iOS 11. He thought that his battery was defunct and causing the issue.

I suggested he turn off the animations that are designed to run on the latest phones and are more processor intensive. (One other thing that will help, however, is to cut back on the transition animations in iOS 11. Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Reduce Motion and toggle it to off.) And like magic, his phone ran as fast as it ever did!

I did the same thing with my sluggish iPhone 5, and did a reinstall clearing all my data, and it runs really great now, as if it were brand new!

Makes me wonder how many people will think they have the battery issue when in reality they have features turned on that will inherently bog down the older phones. You'd think Apple would auto detect the model and by default have features like animation turned off. But perhaps their motivation is not to give their customers the best experience?!?

f you want to speed up your older iPhone, this article covers most of what I did for my iPhone 5 last year: http://bgr.com/2017/09/19/ios-11-features-iphone-how-to-spee...)

Totally aside from the above, I turned off the animations on my iPhone X and it seems to run slower. Not sure what that is all about.

Apple did disable some graphic effects for older phones during one of the big changes. I recall the iPhone 4 didn't blur the backgrounds like newer phones.

Turning off animations feels (to me) faster even on the same phone and OS version. Probably a false sense.


iOS 11 had some stability issues on my 6s. It got a lot better when I installed 11.1.

So basically it does what’s reasonable to protect your hardware. Not really worthy of the ominous clickbait title here.

If you buy a car with a V8 engine, and after a few months it decides to become an L4 engine, without telling you, is that ok? The headline is completely correct.

I'm not sure why you're getting downvoted when Apple advertises performance as a selling point of their devices.

I suspect because it's not a completely fair comparison from an account created apparently to post this criticism. Apple is apparently trying to mitigate the phone from shutting down under load the battery can no longer support. I'm not sure how to mangle the metaphor to make it more appropriate (my imagination is flagging), but one could argue Apple is trying to make sure the car still runs, even if it's limping along, rather than leaving you stranded on the side of the road at an inopportune time.

So instead of making you turn your car to the service; they make you buy a new car by omitting the fact that your car’s performance is degraded due to another reason?

This is the crux of the matter - the lack of transparency may have earned them millions (billions?) in additional sales. It remains to be seen how this news affects their goodwill but I suspect not much.

As has been pointed out in multiple other comments here and elsewhere and in other articles, you can actually get the battery replaced as opposed to buying a new phone, which would be bringing your car into service.

I had a phone which was exhibiting poor performance. I called up support, and they were able to run diagnostics remotely, and determine the battery needed to be replaced, which I was able to have done the following day.

There are plenty of people who would rather Apple made a different tradeoff with respect to batteries in general, which is fine, and people are free to buy a different phone. My comment was trying to answer the question posed to my parent as to why someone might have downvoted their parent. Let's not continue to abuse this already poor metaphor.

"As has been pointed out in multiple other comments here and elsewhere and in other articles, you can actually get the battery replaced as opposed to buying a new phone, which would be bringing your car into service."

But the ordinary consumer has no idea. They just see their phone is slower than the fancy new ones. Why would they assume it's a battery problem.

> "They just see their phone is slower than the fancy new ones."

I really don't know how to respond to this. Isn't that going to be the case regardless? New phones are going to be faster.

If they see a performance degradation on their phone, they've got some options to them. The easiest would be to have the phone looked at, as I did. They could also search the web for ideas as to what's wrong. Or they could give up and buy a new phone, maybe not Apple.

There's a whole host of things going on here. Some people want user-replaceable batteries. Some people want better diagnostics in the phone. Some want better control over what's going on in the phone. I understand and in some cases sympathize with these positions. I also understand that Apple has to make tradeoffs when designing their products, both hardware and software, keeping in mind how people are going to use them and how they'll interpret different behaviors. Same thing with every other manufacturer out there.

I'm bowing out of this. I intended just to point out why someone might have downvoted the comment above, and I've let myself get dragged into justifying alternative ways of thinking about the situation. I guess this is what leads to a lot of comments asking why something was downvoted or flagged or whatever: some people aren't willing to take the time to think through what alternatives might be, and whether they might be be reasonable, even if you don't agree with them. That's a shame, because it's crucial to being able to understand people you don't already agree with or how others may perceive your own actions. I'm not here to argue for argument's sake.

I really don't think that's the case here. This issue is probably related to the battery, but the fact that there was no notice indicates to me that there are ulterior motives at play here. Obviously their corporate-speak is going to highlight the one kernel of truth in the matter, and they'll never admit that this was done for the side-effect that it would have on sales of new devices.

Let's cut into Apple's bullshit. LiOn ageing is not unique to Apple. The problem is that their batteries are so horribly low powered (1800 mAh for iPhone 6s), especially for the price of the overall phone, that normal known ageing patterns would render the battery below spec of max power the iPhone draws at peak performance. It's BAD design. Note 8 ships with 3300mah and iPhone X with 2700mah. Both cost a $1000. Which one do you think will last longer if 2500mah were the max power threshold?

Why aren't more people talking about this? iPhones are wildly popular and this is a gigantic confirmation of something the public has suspected for years.

It’ll be all over the news tomorrow.

I see no situation where slowing phone‘s performance is better compared to giving the user options to improve phone’s performance. Something is fishy.

Queue class action lawsuits.

They should change their marketing; 50% faster than before*

In small letters: *for 500 charge cycles. After that it will run at the speed of your coffee maker.

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