Apple’s iOS 11.3 update gives you control over iPhone slowdown

Posted at 2:55 PM, Jan 24, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-24 14:55:08-05

Tim Cook is making good on a promise to let users opt out of Apple slowing down their iPhones.

Apple gave a sneak peek on Wednesday of iOS 11.3 months before its spring launch.

Although the company does not generally preview minor software updates this far in advance, the move is likely a damage control effort to make it clear that two important features are on the way: the ability to opt out of Apple slowing down your phone and a tool that shows your iPhone battery’s health.

Late last year, the company admitted it was using software updates to slow down phones to prevent them from turning off suddenly. Following backlash, Apple apologized and dropped the price of replacement batteries for the iPhone 6 and later.

Last week, Cook told ABC News that the next iOS update will be more transparent about the health of your phone battery.

While you can opt out, he said Apple doesn’t recommend users do so. The performance of lithium-ion batteries deteriorates over time, and this can cause phones to shut off abruptly to protect their components.

Previously, the company said its software updates for the iPhone 6, iPhone 6S, iPhone SE and iPhone 7 aimed to “smooth out” peak power demands, avoid unexpected shutdowns and extend the lifespan of batteries.

The iOS 11.3 update will also include several new Animoji options, such as a lion, bear, dragon and skull. The feature uses face detection tech to animate emoji with your movements.

The company is also adding music videos to its Apple Music service. This could be the first step to turn the subscription service into a video streaming platform to take on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

In addition, the preview shows a new health records feature that compiles your medical data from multiple providers, such as hospitals and clinics, as well as data collected on your phone. The data will be encrypted and password protected.

Its augmented reality platform will get some updates too, too. ARKit will be able to identify and place virtual objects on vertical surfaces, such as walls.

The update rolls out in beta to developers starting Wednesday and will be available to consumers in the spring.