Apple’s slowing-down of old phones a scam to increase sales of new phones

February 8, 2018 — by Muthu Palaniappan

In the end of 2017, Apple admitted to slowing down older models of iPhones. This controversy made the headlines of news outlets and trended on social media. Apple’s confession exposed a corruption and confirmed a phenomena that was only rumor before.

This principle is called “planned obsolesce,” where companies purposely create products that deplete relatively quickly, so consumers are forced to rebuy the same product more often.

Just in the U.S., over 220 million people own iPhones. Since the phones are also incredibly expensive, it is often a big purchase for consumers, one that comes after lots of thought and financial sacrifice.

Buying one iPhone is expensive enough (the newest iPhone X is priced at $999), but having to buy a new one every few years because of a deliberately slow battery is outrageous.

Apple’s explanation for slowing down phones was to preserve the phone’s capabilities. Since the batteries naturally deplete, keeping up the phone speed would ruin the battery even more. The company claimed its actions protected the phone more than what would naturally happen to the battery.  

The company’s official statement said, “This feature’s only intent is to prevent unexpected shutdowns so that the iPhone can still be used.”

The company has no right to treat their users like this. Instead of creating a way to make emojis come to life through “animojis” on the iPhone X, Apple should and could have worked to create stronger batteries that do not deplete over time, or at the very least, not every year.

It is completely unfair to indirectly force users to buy a new model when there are barely any improvements from prior models.

Adding to all these doubts about Apple is that the company often changes only a few aspects of the older version of the phone. For instance, it adds a better camera and calls it the newest and next best smartphone. The only difference between the iPhone 7 and 8 is a new camera, faster processing speed and new camera software. These new features are hardly compelling enough iPhone 7 users to buy an iPhone 8, but since Apple slows down their phone, they may be more inclined to buy the new phone.

Users who pay a large sum of money and expect a phone that will work for a long time do not deserve Apple’s corruption of slowing down older iPhones.


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