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Apple confirms enforcing obsolescence

For ones, conspiracy theorists were right. Last week, Apple has officially confirmed that it is deliberately slowing old iPhones down. However, the company didn't just decide to come clean on it on its own initiative. It has done so only after many users have noticed and made it public that the models that had sufficiently good hardware to perform well, were, in fact, noticeably slower than the latest iPhone.

In the official statement, Apple said that the practice was done purely to ensure that the battery on old devices still remains fully functional. According to the company, they didn't do it to force their user base to buy new devices. However, many people are skeptical about this statement and quite rightly so.

It is true that multiple cycles of charging and discharge lithium-ion batteries degrade the physical structure of the batteries over time and it is equally true that slowing the hardware down improve the battery life. However, the question remains of why Apple didn't choose to reveal the practice on its own initiative.

It is relatively easy for a smartphone to detect what state its battery is in. So why would all old devices be slowed down and not just the ones that had the battery substantially degraded? Also, as Apple provides a relatively cheap battery-changing service, why would they not just decide to leave it as it is, so the users could change the battery or, indeed, upgrade their phone as soon as they have noticed that the battery doesn't last anywhere near as long as it used to?

This is not the first time Apple was caught aggressively enforcing planned obsolescence. When iPods were popular, many people noticed that they irreparably break very shortly after their warranty expires. This is why I never owned an Apple device and probably never will.

Apple produces many categories of products and services, but it is primarily a lifestyle brand. World doesn't depend on it. If Microsoft or Google would disappear tomorrow, global economy would collapse. However, if Apple would disappear, all you'll see is a few hipsters crying in a corner.



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Posted on 23 Dec 2017


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