Only 50% Of iPhone 4S Owners Say iOS 5.1 Has Improved Their Battery Life

Only 50% Of iPhone 4S Owners Say iOS 5.1 Has Improved Their Battery Life

Even under iOS 5.1 the iPhone 4S struggles to stay awake.

On Monday, we asked iPhone 4S readers how Apple’s latest iOS 5.1 software has impacted their battery life. The new handset is notoriously poor at staying alive for a whole day, but those pesky bugs affecting its battery life were, according to Apple, quashed in the recent software update.

Nearly 6,000 readers voted in our poll, and here are the results.

Just under 50% of you said iOS 5.1 has improved your battery life. 13% of you said that your battery life lasts twice as long as it did under iOS 5.0.1, while 20% said that it’s better, but that your iPhone 4S still needs charging at least once a day. 17% of you said that battery life is only a little better, and that it’s still not good enough.

16% of voters said that battery life was just the same as it was before updating to iOS 5.1, and surprisingly, a quarter of your hadn’t noticed whether it was better or worse.

Only 9% of you said that your battery life had deteriorated under iOS 5.1.

With around half of voters reporting that iOS 5.1 improves battery life on their iPhone 4S, it’s clear that Apple has at least taken some steps towards fixing those bugs. And if you haven’t already updated your device, you should do so.

However, we think that just 50% isn’t good enough. We waited months for the iOS 5.1 software to make its debut, and we should be seeing vast improvements. These results show that we haven’t yet got that.

Keep those fixes coming, Cupertino.

Related
  • gettysburg11s

    I have an iPhone 4 (this year is my upgrade year, not last) and I’ve not noticed any changes in my battery life, so it must be only the 4S.  I did, however, notice that the camera app opens faster with iOS 5.1 (something the iPhone 4 sorely needed).

  • Barrett Jasper

    I have the same battery issues (on 5.01 jailbroken) but not going to upgrade to 5.1 until it’s untethered jaibreak-able (if ever of course) but I’m VERY happy to have a Mophie battery case. That solved my battery issue…..at the expense of 100.00 but meh, I need my phone for biz.

  • Darren Mccoy

    I haven’t charged my 4s in two days, i still have 44%. I have all the push services turn off though, so maybe that helps. It’s really strange how the same device can have wildly different battery life. Are the batteries all from the same supplier?

  • Ed_Kel

    Is there any consideration taken in how the phones are used? I have not come across one person who hasn’t been happy with their 4S battery life.. 

  • azzyboy

    Well I can say my battery is worse. Check my twitter stream, 3 hours 39 mins usage with 5 hours 31 mins standby and down to 3% battery since last full charge…

  • Michael Doran

    I agree, no change in battery life on my 4s. Very disappointing. Anyone else unable to access the camera now from their lock screen? My button is completely broken. Hope it does not take another 6 months to update and fix that. 

  • Eric

    “16% of voters said that battery life was just the same as it was before
    updating to iOS 5.1, and surprisingly, a quarter of your hadn’t noticed
    whether it was better or worse.”

    So wouldn’t “not noticing whether it was better or worse”, be the same as “just the same as it was before updating…”?  If so, that would mean 41% of voters say everything stayed pretty much the same as it was before the update.

    I’m more curious if anyone has noticed any new problems arising from the update.

  • Eric

    I hear ya.  I’m still on 5.0 and have never had any battery issues (actually no issues at all), and would like to keep it that way.  As history likes to repeat itself, and some 9% people saying their battery life is worse, I think I’ll hold on to 5.0 for a while longer.

  • Paulakero

    how did you verify that the people who voted actually had the 4S?

    one person commented in Computerworld said he crosschecked the screen names of many people who posted that they had 4S problems were Android users …

    “Of the 45 user/screen names 36 were unique users (as far as I could tell)
    Of the 36 users, 15 were obvious Android users complaining about ‘their’ iPhone battery or Siri problems.  This is based upon reading posts of these 15 users on multiple pro Android sites.  Many admit in posts that they hate Apple and would never buy one of their products. These 15 Android users accounted for 223 negative posts on the 36 articles sampled. This  means that of the total comments, 68.8% were negative posts by non Apple users pretending to own an Apple device for the sole purpose of spreading false information.”http://blogs.computerworld.com… saying that people who actually own the 4S do not have battery issues but open polls without verification stats are useless)

  • joewaylo

    I have no issues at all except when I’m in a no service region. And if I’m playing Internet 3D action games like I have in the past on Ngmoco’s games. Battery life remains the same as I abuse it.

  • MacHead

    Whatever. You know full well that all you do isnt just check twitter to kill your battery. You are either running GPS in the background or music or watching videos (probably all of the above and much more). Ooooor, the most likely scenario, the usage/standby times listed for 3% battery just arent true. 1% battery drop every two minutes of usage just aint from twitter.

  • maccid

    I have iOS 5.1 on both my iPhone 4 and iPhone 4s. I haven’t noticed a difference on either one. That’s good because I’ve gotten great battery life on both phones using them on HSPA+ for 10 hours a day Mon-Fri heavy usage. No complaints.

  • Mike Boening

    Hold your thumb on the camera button and slide it up. 

  • Paulakero

    how did you verify that those that voted actually had an iPhone 4S?

    one Computerworld reader found in another iPhone article that comparing user names many of the people complaining about iPhone were android users:

    “Of the 45 user/screen names 36 were unique users (as far as I could tell)
    Of the 36 users, 15 were obvious Android users complaining about ‘their’ iPhone battery or Siri problems.  This is based upon reading posts of these 15 users on multiple pro Android sites.  Many admit in posts that they hate Apple and would never buy one of their products. These 15 Android users accounted for 223 negative posts on the 36 articles sampled. This  means that of the total comments, 68.8% were negative posts by non Apple users pretending to own an Apple device for the sole purpose of spreading false information.”http://blogs.computerworld.com… saying people aren’t really having issues but unless you can verify they actually own an iPhone.. )

  • lowtolerance

    Usage: 8 hours 20 minutes
    Standby: 1 Day, 1 Hour

    My phone has been at 10% for at least an hour.

  • MySkyizBlue

    I noticed an improvement on my battery life. I was playing dead space (a retina quality game) for 25 minutes and my phone’s battery only dropped to 85%
    Usually it would of dropped to 75% at most

  • CharliK

    Its not that strange since folks have different settings etc

    My roommate was having issues and then realized that when he turned the Bluetooth headset he tried out, he never turned off Bluetooth. Did that and his battery life was hours better. Other folks say the same about changing push settings, turning off location services etc

  • mwalt

    After updating my 3 week old iphone 4s I lost all sounds! No notifications of new messages, mail. No clicks when texting or taking pics, or even tones when dialing a call. The speaker didn’t work at all, unless headphones were connected. My provider replaced the phone and I think I’ll hold of on updating this one to 5.1

  • Itchy Finger

    My battery life has deteriorated considerably since the update.  I used to manage a full-day on a single charge, now I am at 48% battery life after only 3 hours and all I’ve done is sent 2 texts, received 1 and received 15 emails.

    The phone is getting rather warm which suggests that something is running but I have no visible applications running.

  • Richard Pettys Jr

    My battery life has deteriorated miserably with the IOS 5.1 on my iPhone 4S.  Come on, Apple!  Either make it right or send *free* car chargers to those of us suffering through this.

About the author

Killian BellKillian Bell is a freelance writer based in the UK. He has an interest in all things tech, but most enjoys covering Apple, anything mobile, and gaming. You can follow him on Twitter via @killianbell, or through his website.

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