Software Upgrade - Apple 5

I recently upgraded to IOS8 on my phone. I could be mistaken, but it sure appears as though battery life has been reduced. Possible? Probable? Anyone else?

Others have made the same complaint about the iphone5 on iOS 8. Here is an article about it with some suggestions.

I’m not an iPhone person, but I did spend almost 15 years writing device drivers for cell phones. It’s certainly possible that an upgrade can hurt your battery life.

The software maintaining good battery life is very complicated. I was responsible for it for a few phones at my previous job. We had a team of people who measured battery life over a large set of circumstances for each device on each major internal release. But it’s hard to cover all the bases in something as complicated as a smart phone. For instance, sometimes a cell company has a slightly different network configuration in one region, compared to others. This can cause unexpected behavior for certain applications - extra retries, constant resync, etc…leading to poor battery life.

Based on comments in another Apple thread (in IMHO), there seems to be reason to suspect that Apple may deliberately issue software “upgrades” that slow down older phones to encourage people to get the new one. It’s possible that they be messing with battery management software as well.

This is just a variant of the “planned obsolescence” claim that companies purposefully make their products shoddy so you’ll have to buy a new one.

It’s bullshit.

Every time you design something, there are tradeoffs you make because you have certain priorities. For a phone OS, one of those tradeoffs is features vs battery life. The more the phone does, the more electricity it uses. Now, with careful design, you can make the impact of new features very slight. Sometimes, you can even rework old features so that the sum total impact to the battery is less than with the old version. And sometimes you can’t.

There’s no conspiracy to make your phone not work as well. There are hard engineering problems with no magic solutions.

This is completely correct but trying to explain this to people seems to be a losing battle. I’m not sure why people find comfort in conspiracy theories but they do.

(It’s taking longer than we thought)

I haven’t noticed any major difference.

However, my first 15 minutes with the new iOS were spent turning off virtually every new feature that could possibly be using power or compromising privacy. The “out of the box” configuration turns a lot of things on. As already commented on, features consume power, so keep your eye on those.

To continue this line of reasoning: new iterations of the phone almost always come with a bigger battery. The new version of the OS will be designed to take advantage of that, by trading in some power efficiency for, say, nicer looking UI graphics, or additional background processing, or something. It’s entirely reasonable that those changes would then carry over to the old phone, reducing its battery life.

This is a good point, and is one of many things we used to take into account when deciding which older models of devices could get updated software.