Apple released its iOS 6.0.2 update over-the-air to select devices earlier this week, promising a fix for a frustrating bug that could impact Wi-Fi performance. However, the update comes with a nasty problem of its own. There are reports that it has greatly reduced battery life on the iPhone 5 and the iPad mini — even when the devices go unused for long periods of time.
Adam Engst of TidBITS first noticed “unusual battery drains” with his iPhone 5 and iPad mini, and he notes that several of his colleagues have been experiencing the same thing.
In my case, when Michael Cohen raised the issue on our staff list at 12:30 PM, my iPhone 5 was at 73 percent. That’s a bit low, given that I’d barely used the iPhone, but I don’t know that I started the day with a full charge. However, 90 minutes later, at 2 PM, I was down to 55 percent – an 18 percent drop – without having used the iPhone at all.
Engst suggests that in Apple’s attempt to fix the Wi-Fi bug, it may have made Wi-Fi a little too active, having devices work so hard to connect to Wi-Fi access points that it’s draining their batteries.
Engst and his colleagues aren’t the only ones experiencing this issue, either — search for “iOS 6.0.2 battery” on Twitter and you’ll find a whole host of users reporting the same thing. With that being the case, it might be worth holding off on upgrading to iOS 6.0.2 for the time being if you’re not experiencing the Wi-Fi issues it’s supposed to fix.
Personally, I haven’t noticed this issue on either my iPhone 5 or my iPad mini, but to be honest, I haven’t been looking out for it. Although they don’t seem to be draining any faster than they did prior to upgrading, they’re often plugged into my Mac for different things anyway.
Hopefully, Apple will issue an update to fix this update — or a patch to patch the patch — in due course.