Last Thursday Apple released iOS 5.0.1 and I immediately installed it on my iPhone 4 (primarily so I could test out the over-the-air install feature). Then something happened that wasn't supposed to happen - my Phone's battery life took an instant and massive hit.
According to Apple, iOS 5.0.1 was meant to fix 'bugs affecting battery life' but according to user feedback over on Apple's support forum the update didn't fix the problem for many users, and introduced the bug to others who had previously not been affected by it.
Note: In the defense of the iOS 5.0.1 update, it did fix the problem for some iPhone owners.
I have first-hand proof that the iOS 5.0.1 update can be toxic - because my iPhone 4 battery life hasn't been the same since installing it. Prior to iOS 5.0.1 I was getting what I would have described as stellar battery life from my handset. Even when under quite heavy usage I could go a good day and a half without needing to recharge. Even after installing iOS 5, I was still getting excellent performance out of the battery.
The first thing that I noticed was the battery life dropping like a stone overnight when the handset wasn't doing anything. As a rule I'd expect a drop of around four percentage points overnight, but Friday morning after installing the new update I noticed that the battery had dropped about fifteen percentage points, way more than I'd have normally expected. I put it down to coincidence but decided to keep an eye on things. Next night I noticed the same thing happen. To make matters worse, I noticed the battery draining away much faster than normal during the day with no change in my usage pattern. Just this morning I saw the handset drop from 80% charge to under 10% over the course of a few hours.
And remember, this isn't a new iPhone 4S, this is an iPhone 4 that prior to iOS 5.0.1 update was offering me excellent battery life.
Testing done for me by an iOS app developer seems to suggest that the battery problems affecting iPhone 4S is software related rather than anything to do with the hardware, and given the issue I'm seeing on my iPhone 4 (and to some extent on my two test iPhone 3GS handsets), I'm inclined to agree that with that conclusion.
So, given that I've both heard and seen how iOS 5.0.1 can cause problems for iPhone 4 and 4S (and to a lesser extent, 3GS users), if you've not yet installed the update, you might want to give it a miss.
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