APPLE CEO Tim Cook has said that a future iOS update will let users opt-out of a so-called 'feature' that throttles the performance of older iPhones with degraded batteries.
Earlier this year, Apple admitted that it hamstrings the performance of iPhones 6, 6S and SE handsets to prevent the handsets' processors from demanding too much power from older Lithium-ion battery packs, which degrade over time.
This, naturally, went down like a lead balloon, and Apple has since been whacked by multiple lawsuits and a probe from French authorities, where it is a crime to intentionally shorten the lifespan of a product with the aim of making customers replace it.
Speaking to ABC News this week, Tim Cook has revealed that, alongside its bargain bucket battery replacements, the firm will soon roll out an iOS update that will allow users to switch off the throttling 'feature'.
However, Cook has recommended that users don't switch off the feature. While many may argue this is so that iPhone users have more of an incentive to upgrade to a newer model, Cook said that doing so could cause some handsets to "shut down unexpectedly."
"We're gonna give people the visibility of the health of their battery so its very very transparent, this hasn't been done before," Cook said. "We will tell somebody we're slightly reducing your performance by some amount in order to not have a sudden restart, and if you don't want it you can turn it off."
"We don't recommend it, because we think people's iPhones are really important to them and you never can tell when something is so urgent."
Cook added that Apple could have been more transparent about the fact that iPhones were being slowed down, noting: "Our actions were always in service of the user, maybe we should have been clearer at a point of time but our actions were always the purest.
"If anybody out there believes we did something nefariously we apologise for any kind of thing that we did or didn't do."
A developer preview of the incoming iOS update will be released in February, so it'll likely roll out to all the following month.
During the ABC interview, Cook also confirmed reports that Apple is giving staffers $2,500 bonuses in restricted stock units following the passing of new US tax law.
"We're one of the few -- we're probably the only company of our size where every person is an owner in the company," Cook said. "Instead of a onetime kind of bonus, we wanted to do something that lasts a longer period of time."
News of these bonuses comes just days after it was revealed that, er, dire conditions at an iPhone-making factory in China last year lead to 90 per cent of the workforce being taken to hospital after being exposed to sulphur and phosphorous. µ
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