Apple said it initially attributed consumer complaints about slower performance to the kind of temporary sluggishness that can occur when an iPhone owner upgrades the phone's operating system, or to release bugs. The stock is up 47.7% so far this year, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which counts Apple as a component, has increased 25.7%. Apple said the problem was that aging lithium batteries delivered power unevenly, which could cause iPhones to shutdown unexpectedly to protect the delicate circuits inside.
The company was hit with a lawsuit earlier this month alleging that it deliberately "slows down iPhone processors" in older models of the iPhone without the consent of the phone owners. At this point, we haven't seen evidence suggesting that any of them do and it could turn out that this is just an Apple thing.
The revelations spurred widespread outrage from customers, who felt Apple was withholding information about the batteries in an effort to force them to purchase new, expensive iPhones, as well as several lawsuits, including one filed in California.
The company's confirmation of a long-suspected phenomenon triggered class-action, breach-of-contract lawsuits.
The company confirmed the slowdown last week, but said it was part of a power management feature meant to prevent older batteries from shutting down suddenly.
We now believe that another contributor to these user experiences is the continued chemical aging of the batteries in older iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s devices, many of which are still running on their original batteries.
A report today from Reuters takes a look at Apple's broadening iPhone lineup and some of the benefits of its new strategy.