Mobility

Cook: Apple will release software update to fix iPhone battery slowdown issue

Users will be able to opt out of the feature that slows iPhones when the battery is low.

Building a slide deck, pitch, or presentation? Here are the big takeaways:
  • iPhone users will be able to turn off the feature that slows their phone if the battery is dying with a new software update.
  • The update comes after Apple made headlines for purposefully slowing older iPhone batteries and then offering $29 battery replacements in response.

Apple is releasing a software update that will let iPhone users disable the feature that slows phones when the battery is dying, the company's CEO Tim Cook told ABC News on Wednesday.

The phone-slowing feature was supposed to help prevent sudden phone shutdowns for iPhones with older batteries, which would sometimes happen when the batteries were low on charge.

iPhone battery health has been a hot topic since Apple admitted to purposefully slowing older iPhones in December. In response, Apple announced that iPhone users would be able to purchase a $29 battery replacement for the next year, even if the battery is healthy.

SEE: Mobile device computing policy (Tech Pro Research)

If they elect to disable to feature, professionals using older iPhones may be able to continue using their phone at full strength, but may risk the sudden shutdowns that are possible with the older batteries.. Cook said the phone-slowing feature was initially added to prevent the phone from inconvenient shutdowns, like during important calls or video chats.

"We will tell somebody we are reducing your performance by some amount in order to not have an unexpected restart, and if you don't want it, you can turn it off," Cook said in the ABC News interview.

The update, set to launch as a test version next month, will also allow iPhone users to see the health of their battery. Users can also use the CPU DasherX app to see if their battery needs replacing, along with other details about the processor.

The battery-limiting feature originally launched with the iPhone 6, iPhone 6s and iPhone SE, according to an Apple statement. However, after massive backlash against the company for its battery throttling techniques, it's clear that the Cupertino giant is doing some damage control.

Also see

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Image: iStockphoto/Prykhodov

About Olivia Krauth

Olivia Krauth is a Multiplatform Reporter at TechRepublic.

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