iPhone X and iPhone 8 get Apple’s controversial processor throttling feature

Apple began rolling out iOS 12.1 yesterday, adding some great features like group FaceTime calls and over 70 new emoji. Hidden within the excitement, however, is a release note that mentions the Cupertino firm has added its controversial performance throttling feature to the iPhone 8, the iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X – something the tech giant earlier said would likely not be necessary.

This feature, which made headlines through the end of 2017 and well into 2018, uses an algorithm to reduce the performance of an aging iPhone to protect the electrical components inside and prevent the device from prematurely shutting down.

Losing memory

When the 2017 flagships launched last year, Apple said that the “models include hardware updates that allow a more advanced performance management system that more precisely allows iOS to anticipate and avoid an unexpected shutdown”. 

However, according to the iOS 12.1 release notes, the new update “adds a performance management feature [...] for iPhone X, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus”. Apple’s support page has also been updated with the same language.

There’s a silver lining, though, as Apple allows users to disable the feature, which was included in the iOS 11 release. If you aren’t a fan of your year-old iPhone’s performance being throttled, head to Settings > Battery > Battery Health and check the message below Peak Performance Capability. Note that you’ll see a clickable “Disable” option only if your device’s battery isn’t able to cope.

Image: Apple

Image: Apple

While adding the performance throttling feature was a necessary move, according to Apple, to future-proof iPhones, the company faced a series of class action lawsuits and was fined €5 million in Italy for keeping the feature under wraps till it was exposed by Geekbench

At least now Apple is being a bit more upfront about it, and we won’t be surprised to find the newly launched iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR join the list further down the line.

[Via The Verge]

Sharmishta Sarkar
Managing Editor (APAC)

Sharmishta is TechRadar's APAC Managing Editor and loves all things photography, something she discovered while chasing monkeys in the wilds of India (she studied to be a primatologist but has since left monkey business behind). While she's happiest with a camera in her hand, she's also an avid reader and has become a passionate proponent of ereaders, having appeared on Singaporean radio to talk about the convenience of these underrated devices. When she's not testing camera kits or the latest in e-paper tablets, she's discovering the joys and foibles of smart home gizmos. She's also the Australian Managing Editor of Digital Camera World and, if that wasn't enough, she contributes to T3 and Tom's Guide, while also working on two of Future's photography print magazines Down Under.