Apple Apologizes for Slowing Down Old iPhones, Cuts Price of Replacement Batteries

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NEW YORK — After an eight-day uproar since news first broke that Apple intentionally slowed down older iPhone models to save battery life, the company apologized Thursday and said it will be reducing the price of a replacement battery to $29 from $79 for iPhone 6 and later models.

In a statement, Apple said it has “never — and would never — do anything to intentionally shorten the life of any Apple product.” The company insisted the iOS upgrade from earlier this year that slowed down batteries was introduced to stop unexpected shutdowns and extend battery life.

The $29 price tag for a replacement battery will be rolled out worldwide in late January and last until December 2018, the company said.

On Dec. 20, Apple admitted that processing speeds on older iPhones were intentionally slower, beginning with the iOS 10.2.1 upgrade in 2016. The company said the move was meant to prevent phones from shutting down in cold temperatures, when the battery was low or on phones with very old batteries.

Aging batteries meant phones could have trouble operating or might unexpectedly shut down, as was the case with some iPhone 6 and 6S devices last year, CNET reported. The processors in those devices wanted to hit faster speeds, but their batteries couldn’t handle the demand, prompting some phones to simply switch themselves off. 

The software applied to the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, 6S and 6S Plus and SE. This year’s iOS 11.2 extended the feature to the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus.  

Apple had to admit the mistake as customer dissatisfaction grew, and they were even slapped with a class-action lawsuit on Dec. 22. 

Apple said that in a new iOS upgrade due out in early 2018 will “give users more visibility into the health of their iPhone’s battery, so they can see for themselves if its condition is affecting performance.”

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