iOS 13.3 improves battery life and performance on older iPhones

Latest iOS update gives older iPhones longer battery life, better performance


The iPhone 8 and other Apple handsets see real benefits from iOS 13.3.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

There are sometimes concerns that new iOS versions will cut the battery life of older iPhone models, or slow down performance. Tests on a variety of Apple handsets with the just-released iOS 13.3 show just the opposite — this update not only speeds up these devices, it increases the time between charges.

iOS 13.3 performance benchmarks

iAppleBytes ran Geekbench 4 performance and battery tests on an iPhone XR, iPhone 8, iPhone 7, iPhone 6S and iPhone SE while they were running iOS 13.2.3. Then they moved each of these handsets to iOS 13.3 and reran the benchmarks.

In almost every case, upgrading the operating system improved the performance. And there were considerable jumps for the iPhone 8 and iPhone 7.

iOS 13.3 performance vs. previous versions on a variety of older Apple handsets
Almost all the Apple devices tested saw performance gains from iOS 13.3.
Chart: iAppleBytes/CultofMac

The sole exception is iPhone SE. Still, pulling in data from tests iAppleBytes ran last spring, the iPhone SE benefitted tremendously in the move from iOS 12 to iOS 13.

And battery benchmarks

Apple also improved battery life in almost all of these models with its latest operating system update. The iPhone 8 and iPhone 7 were again the big beneficiaries, with the time between recharges increasing 30 minutes and 39 mins., respectively.

iOS 13.3 battery life vs. previous versions on a variety of older Apple handsets
iOS 13.3 brought longer battery lives to nearly every devices tested.
Photo: iAppleBytes/CultofMac

The situation continues to repeat itself with the iPhone SE. There’s a very slight decrease in battery life with iOS 13.3, but it’s significantly better than back with iOS 12.3.1.

iOS upgrades for all

But pointing out that this new upgrade makes only small improvements to the battery lives and performance of some older models isn’t the point. These tests clearly show that iOS 13.3 doesn’t hobble these models, which is what some people are concerned about.

With these concerns hopefully allayed, they can enjoy the benefits of this operating system upgrades. Consider that this won’t just bring new features, it’s the only way to get security patches. Devices still running iOS 12 or earlier have known security flaws — flaws that can be fixed by installing version 13.3.

Watch iAppleBytes’ video of the most recent tests:


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