Apple is deliberately slowing down your iPhone: the revelation would appear to encourage the popular conspiracy theory about the iPhone.
However, the tech giant claim its motive is not to encourage customers to upgrade to a newer model but rather as a precautionary measure. If they did not slow down our phones, they may unexpectedly shut down or break earlier than they should. Or so they claim.
“Last year, we released a feature for iPhone 6, iPhone 6s and iPhone SE to smooth out the instantaneous peaks only when needed to prevent the device from unexpectedly shutting down during these conditions,” Apple told Reuters.
The issue comes from the iPhone’s battery, rather than its processor.
Marca Doeff, an expert at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, explains that a lithium-ion battery is likely to, over time, deliver less power and a single charge may not last as long as it did. Cold weather is harmful too, as it slows everything down. Charging is dependent on lithium ions being able to move between two sides of the battery. When the cold weather hits, that movement slows down, the phone shuts down. These abrupt shutdowns are common.
To prevent these shutdowns, Apple decided to slow down the phone’s entire process. All lithium-ion batteries contain a battery management system that tracks battery capacity, according to Venkat Srinivasan, a battery expert at the Argonne National Laboratory. This is how Apple knows what is going on.
Rather than discreetly sabotaging our phones, Apple could have simply educated users on the limitations of their batteries. While Apple does state in their user manual that the batteries degrade over time and would need replacing, you’d have to have a wider knowledge to understand that by 500 charge cycles, the battery charge will only hold around 80 percent.
Apple could have also sold replacement kits to consumers, allowing them to replace their phones with a fresh battery. This would have provided a fair and proper solution to the problem instead of software manipulation that feeds into a long-running, planned devolution conspiracy theory.
However, according to the HuffPost, Apple argues that consumers replacing batteries could make their iPhones more vulnerable to hackers. Apple has also actively fought against laws that would require them to provide an alternative to their consumers.