iPhone OS 3.0 hurts battery life in older models?

By Justin Mann on June 23, 2009, 3:04 PM
With over 6 million downloads since its release a short time ago, Apple's new iPhone OS 3.0 update is certainly proving popular. If you’ve read any iPhone 3G S reviews, you also know that the new firmware is designed to take advantage of the latest hardware, but works with the original and 3G iPhone as well. There are scattered reports, however, that the picture isn't as rosy when paired with these older models, with users complaining that it is causing the battery life on their phones to take a nosedive.

The reports aren't isolated, and some users are even reporting that the update causes their phone to run hot on top of having a shortened battery life. During the iPhone OS 3.0 beta, there were a few reports of battery life drops, which were primarily attributed to debugging software. Given that this is a final release, you wouldn't expect the two to be related. Nevertheless, if there is an issue, hopefully we'll hear from Apple soon on potential resolutions. The newer-hardware 3G S is apparently unaffected.




User Comments: 19

Got something to say? Post a comment
yukka, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Interesting. I charged mine last night and played a bit of peggle this afternoon for about 20 minutes. Popped the phone in my pocket and when I got home saw the Phone was in the red zone. Seemed a little quick. I had put the phone in standby while running the game. Maybe its related. The battery life isnt great on the 3G Iphone at the best of times.

Guest said:

I'm pretty sure Apple already said that push notifications were going to have a negative impact on battey life when they announced OS 3.0 back in March.

Aolish Aolish said:

eh, i still use those really old blucky style cellphones, one of the greatest advantages with having the really old phones is going through over a whole week without having to recharge a single time!!!!! The batteries on these old style of phones last an EXTREMELY long time. I just don't see how people today can get by with todays phones. They barely last 24 hours lol

yukka, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Guest said:

I'm pretty sure Apple already said that push notifications were going to have a negative impact on battey life when they announced OS 3.0 back in March.

So an option to turn them off to increase battery life might be a good idea?

Anyway as far as I am aware I am not using any apps with push notification except push email which i had on before.

Staff
Julio Franco Julio Franco, TechSpot Editor, said:

I upgraded my first generation iPhone a day after release and for me it's not been long enough to notice a difference. Hopefully it won't have an overall impact unless you use persistent-type features like push notifications that obviously will take its toll.

Meanwhile I'm enjoying the free upgrade and some of its additions that should have come from day one like messaging/emailing on landscape mode.

Technochicken Technochicken, TechSpot Paladin, said:

The update doesn't seem to be hurting the life of my 1st gen iPod touch. After my sister played Scramble on it for 45 minutes the battery is only 1/3 down.

It ticked me off that I had to pay 9.95 for it though.

Guest said:

I'm currently using the OS 3.0 . Its really taking a toll on my battery . My battery life only last around 3 - 4 hours

Guest said:

Hy guys, to fix the battery drain issue, try this: Go to Settings -> Mail, Contacts, Calendars -> Fetch New Data -> Turn off Push.

There seems to be an issue with with Push email and some devices. Obviously, you will loose Push feature (mobile me, exchange...) . Apple will need to fix it. It worked for me!

Staff
Rick Rick, TechSpot Staff, said:

It could be a *bug* with push notifications, but it is certainly not by design.

The whole idea behind push notifications is that the device doesn't have to constantly poll for them -- The push server sends the notification directly to the device. It's certainly more efficient than fetching data and the iPhone has supported push email/calendar since 2.x... without noticeable battery drain.

lordbf1 said:

I love the 3.0 no change my battery life.

Guest said:

Same here. After Push was turned off the problem was solved.

Guest said:

I have a gen 1 phone and the battery life has been lousy since upgrading to 3.0. I've turned off Notifications to see if that resolves it. I've had push email for a long time, so I'm keeping that as is for now. Note: The two applications I have that support Notifications were set to Off, so it seems that Notifications will drain the battery even when no apps are benefiting from it.

Guest said:

eh, i still use those really old blucky style cellphones, one of the greatest advantages with having the really old phones is going through over a whole week without having to recharge a single time!!!!! The batteries on these old style of phones last an EXTREMELY long time. I just don't see how people today can get by with todays phones. They barely last 24 hours lol

Yeah! I have a pen-sized flashlight and if I don't use it too much the batter lasts for, like, years!

Come on, man, that's apples to oranges. If you need a phone for a week in the jungle, don't bring an iPhone. If you want a kick-**** mobile computing device, plan to live within the grid.

Staff
Rick Rick, TechSpot Staff, said:

Contrary to my understanding, I'd like to mention that the 3G S *also* benefits from turning off push notifications... very much so.

It's anecdotal, but after my typical work day, the battery bar is at half on my 3G S... slightly worse than my 2G with 3.0, which I run for about a week with simliar results. I turned off push notifications, but used fetch (15 mins) instead for my 3 mail accounts and calendar and now I have 4/5ths of a bar... That's an usually high amount.

Again, it's not scientific, but I used my phone quite a bit today over the same span of time and it's a big enough difference to confirm this, I believe.

Guest said:

I had the same problem. Turning Push for Mail off worked right away. The batterie seems to keep even for longer then before the problem occurred. Fritz

Guest said:

problem is i'm having the problem with push notifications turned off.

Guest said:

3GS here, I tracked my battery life problem down to an Exchange account (Mail and Calendars) set to Push. I set my Exchange accounts to Fetch and the battery life is back to normal.

My MobileMe account is still on Push with no adverse effects. BeeJive IM's Push notifications are also on with no issues - it was just Exchange.

Guest said:

Follow the advices here under the optimize your settings. http://www.apple.com/batteries/iphone.html

Yes, I have proved that notification is the killer. Turn it off, everyone. I still have my push on. My battery is back to normal, lasting over 2 days.

Guest said:

It really hurts!! My iPhone 3G can't stand more than a day with the OS3! if u listen to some music and surf a bit no more than 3-4 hours..... DON't buy iPhones. Apple are good at marketing but at the end the product is not that good... but some htc or nokia... :(

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.