The iPhone 4S has been out all of 3 weeks and users have been somewhat disappointed with its battery life. Apple, after staying quiet for a while, has now acknowledged that this glitch is due to a bug within its latest operating system, iOS 5.
Apple made the announcement that it plans to fix the issue in the upcoming weeks: “A small number of customers have reported lower than expected battery life on iOS 5 devices,” a representative from Apple said. “We have found a few bugs that are affecting battery life and we will release a software update to address those in a few weeks.”
Since millions of consumers purchased the iPhone 4S, tens of thousands might be considered a small number for the company, but the problem seems to have somewhat of a larger reach than Apple would have us believe. Just checkout the countless tech bloggers who have been reporting on the issue, or login to Twitter and search “iPhone 4S battery.” And it’s not a simple case of exaggeration; users are claiming battery drainage at rates that severely affect the iPhone’s viability. Drain’s that range from 1 percent every few minutes to 10 percent overnight on standby. Even light users have complained that their battery loses some 12 to 35 percent of its juice every 30 minutes. These are serious allegations for a company that prides itself on creating perfect electronics.
The parallel between Apple’s latest user issue regarding the iOS 5’s battery life and its problems with the iPhone 4’s cell reception, dubbed “antennagate,” have already been drawn. When the iPhone 4’s hardware caused problems in cell reception, causing many dropped calls, Apple was similarly quiet. But before getting overly upset, pledging to boycott Apple, let’s take a step back and consider their tactic. Apple has always held its tongue when it comes to user issues. Not to say that it ignores its customers, Apple takes the time to assess the situation and knows that speaking too soon on something they don’t understand could be disastrous. Instead, Apple has been conducting some research to figure out where root of the problem. Already we know that it is a software issue with iOS 5. And in addition, Apple has been reaching out to affected users to get a full understanding of the problem.
This release comes better late than never and should quell many users until the release of the software update 5.0.1.
In the meantime, if you are experiencing battery life issues, here are a few helpful tips on how to improve your iPhone’s battery life.
1. Turn off location features. Just go to settings and click on “Location Services” to turn this function off for certain apps or the phone as a whole.
2. Kill app’s after your done with them. Many people switch between apps throughout the day but killing the app so it doesn’t run in the background will help in expanding battery life. To shut down the app when finished, simply press the home button twice (quickly) and hold down on the apps. Once they start to wiggle you can shut off the app you are no longer using.
3. Disable the “set time zone” feauture. As this blog points out, disabling this functionality will increase battery life because the phone constantly checks what time zone you’re in. To do this, just go to settings, then “Location Services,” and scroll to the bottom. Click on “System Services and then check off the “Setting Time Zone” button.
4. Turn down the brightness. In the iPhone’s settings you can change the “Brigthness.” This will be different for each user but as a rule of thumb, the less bright the display, the more battery life.