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iOS 5.1 beta still failing to cope with battery drain

updated 11:20 am EST, Fri December 2, 2011

Software still to blame, analyst suggests

The iOS 5.1 beta is still failing to resolve battery drain some users, according to complaints received by Ars Technica. Battery problems are one of the main targets of v5.1, but while improvements are occurring in some cases, some users are even seeing the situation get worse in early testing. Only one v5.1 beta has been seeded to developers so far.

Analysts suggest that part of the problem may lie with iOS 5's fundamental design, since it simply handles more tasks that may have an impact on power. "I'm not seeing an issue myself," remarks Gartner analyst Michael Gartenberg, "except there are more features I use on a regular basis which do affect battery life. As with all devices, what features you use extensively will affect battery life."

"iOS 5 may simply be using more data transmission or running more background processes to support its new features," adds ABI Research mobile device expert Michael Morgan. "There is also some potential impact of iCloud services." Ars notes that it should be possible to save some battery life by turning off non-essential notifications, reducing the number of synced services, slowing down the pace of data checks, and/or disabling Siri's "raise to talk" function.

Morgan comments that a fundamental problem for Apple is the undefined nature of the problem, which makes it difficult to fix within a complex system. In any case, new hardware isn't believed to be involved. "We tore down the [iPhone] 4S and tested some of the major components, including the new A5 processor," the analyst says. "Nothing that we tested was significantly different from the iPhone 4, and power draw was right where we expected it to be."

by MacNN Staff



  1. Grendelmon

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Let me maket his simple for you,

    ...Apple. Test battery drain with notifications turned on. Now test battery drain with all notifications disabled.

  1. MacTech84

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Why is this even news worthy? For godlike its IN BETA!!!! Meaning not complete, not fully tested, bugs still exist. This is why Apple Shares suffer, because news like this is reported on something that does not fully exist yet, or is BETA software. Way to go Macnn!

  1. calier

    Joined: Dec 1969


    There is NO battery problem !

    How long do we have to listen to this for ? There is no problem with the iPhone4S !!!
    It CLEARLY says on the apple website itself that the battery time has been reduced by a third ! (and from its original release day)

    iPhone 4S (from apple website) : Standby time: Up to 200 hours
    iPhone 4 (from apple website) : Standby time: Up to 300 hours

    Since most of the day, most of people's cell phone is on standby the "issue" people are reporting doesn't seem to be an issue at all.
    I had an iPhone 4S and i could barely last a day with it. I returned it and got a refund. My iPhone 4 with the latest iOS5 still runs like a charm. The issue is not iOS 5 related.
    Have fun posting more about how the next few iOS updates won't fix a phone spec (aka "issue")

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