How Apple is Crippling Its Old Devices with New Software

I’m still using an old iPhone 6 and I was ready and eager to replace it this fall with one of the new models. I was waiting. But something happened along the way and now I’m considering switching to Android.

What happened? iOS 11. I’ve made a mistake to update my old device to the new system. And iOS 11 made my iPhone 6 unusable. It was a perfectly fine phone before — maybe not the fastest, maybe lacking some of the new features, but still pretty good. But after update to iOS 11 this system is eating my whole battery in half an hour and system crashes became an everyday occurrence. I need to be connected to a power source for most of the day, so my mobile phone became a fixed phone.

It’s like Apple is telling me: this time you really have to buy a new iPhone, because we ruined your old one, haha! 💩 📱 It’s not longer my decision to upgrade, because I’m a happy customer of Apple’s products (and I was more than willing to upgrade). I HAVE to upgrade — they dictate. And I protest!

Let me say I’m an Apple fan and I’ve owned many of their products in the last 10 years. A few computers, a few iPhones, three iPads, routers, keyboards, mouses, etc.

I always admired that their devices lasted long. I’m still using 2011 MacBook Air for work — it’s slow, but it’s OK for mail, web, presentations, and a little bit of Sketch, and my home computer is 2011 Mac Mini, which I’ve upgraded, so it’s still nice. Hell, my dad is using my old heavy 2007 MacBook Pro, and with new RAM and SSD it is good enough for him (worth to notice: those upgrades are now impossible). I have one of the first iPads somewhere, and it’s totally unusable now, it’s like a beautiful paperweight, a Spotify machine at best (one of the few apps that still runs fine), but I perfectly understand it — this device had very little RAM and its processor is slow, and most apps don’t support its ancient system. Fine.

But Apple decided now — it’s hard to think it’s not conscious — to fuck up my old phone, which was OK the day before the upgrade to iOS 11, and now it’s a disaster. And I think this is mean, or careless, and wasteful, certainly not sustainability-friendly, and it makes me angry. iOS devices are now having enough processing power to be more like computers: no real need to replace them every year or even for a few years, if you don’t want the newest, fastest, shining thing. (Even my iPhone 6 is not slower on iOS 11 than on iOS 10 — it just doesn’t work as a mobile phone anymore...)

I was thinking: maybe it’s a hardware problem with my battery? But why it’s such a difference just after the system upgrade? And many of my friends with old iPhones report the same thing: after the upgrade to iOS 11 their battery life went to hell. And a lot of people on the net tell the same thing.

The problem is: Apple make it almost impossible to revert to the old system. I’m not a lawyer, obviously, and perhaps I’m wrong, but shouldn’t it be always possible to revert to the old system you purchased the hardware with?

It is easy for Apple to point out Android’s fragmentation problem. But how many of old Apple devices are left broken after the update to the newest system version? Up to date, so statistics are great, but unusable.

Either Apple is doing this crippling of their old devices on purpose or they are now incompetent and unable to make their new system run OK on old devices. iOS 11 bring nothing new to old devices except crashes and battery drain. Why they even allow to install iOS 11 on devices that are in reality totally unsupported?

(BTW, I’m not a hater, I love iOS 11 on my iPad Pro…)

This crippling of the old devices with new software is really disappointing from a perspective of a loyal customer. It’s wrong, Apple, really wrong. I hope this is just a bug, and the next update to iOS 11 will bring my old iPhone back to normal state, but I don’t hold my breath… And now I’m researching Android phones… 🤦


Thank you! Please 👏👏👏 and share! We need to make Apple aware of this widespread problem.

You can also follow me on Twitter.


PS. Even cartoons are now making fun of Apple — you really should watch this episode of The Amazing World of Gumball titled “Bobert System Upgrade”.

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