How many years ago was it when Apple was castigated by members of the technorati elite politburo because iPhone did not have a removable battery and Samsung Galaxy-whatever models did. As it turned out, most customers don’t care about removable batteries.
What do we want? We want a battery that will make it through the day and last a few years; at least until it’s time to buy a new iPhone. What that says should be obvious. Apple’s critics do not understand Apple’s customers. Batterygate is a similar phenomenon. Much ado about not much.
Can You Tell?
Batterygate reminds me of Antennagate and many of Apple’s other Watergate-like scandals that most of us don’t remember because there wasn’t much to remember. Today’s crop of smartphones have lithium ion batteries which also come with a few inherent problems. As the batteries age, crazy things can happen. Apple’s Batterygate issue is based upon the company’s attempt to mitigate chemistry and physics in favor of the user experience.
It goes like this. Apple started throttling performance whenever the iPhone’s battery reached a certain point of degradation, ostensibly so the phone wouldn’t experience a random crash which some app needed more power than the battery could provide. Was the slowdown in performance noticeable? Some customers think so. Others tracked performance on older iPhones and that’s where it was discovered what Apple did to mitigate the issue. Hence, Batterygate. Apple owned up to the problem, offered a much reduced battery replacement program for specific iPhone models, and promised, 1) more transparency about such issues, and, 2) a future update to allow customers to opt into the throttling procedure.
Those steps won’t throttle critics or put a curb on ambulance chaser lawyers, but those are different issues. Apple did the right thing by throttling iPhone performance on devices with degraded batteries (ostensibly to extend the iPhone’s life cycle), but did the wrong thing by not making it a user option. Samsung customers and other smartphone makers that run Android OS will continue to see their customers suffer at the hands of physics and chemistry, and they won’t care.
No good deed goes unpunished, armirite?
Move along, there’s nothing to see here should be the order of the day but if you have an iPhone 6 you can get a new battery for $29. That’s a good deal but it won’t end Batterygate as an issue for Apple because lawyers.