The Reason for the iPhone 4S battery life problems – a bug in location services suspected

Charles Author wrote in the Guardian about the problem that most of us have been facing and that is the battery life of the iPhone 4S. This is the system location service on the iPhone 4S that is using too much battery. This is a flaw that customers have found in Apple’s new iOS5 system software.

A large number of iPhone 4S customers have found that the “Setting Time Zone” which you can see above seem to be working all the time even if  they have not changed their place, and so there is no way that their time zone has changed. This in their opinion is leading to fast battery drainage in the iPhone 4S battery. The purple icon shows that the service is running even when there is no need to.

Location services cause large battery drainage on any phone, this is because for them to work they need to connect to the Wi-Fi network name, and also the mobile mast data and GPS sensor input. This is all to help it calculate the position of the mobile in question. The mobile data is used to calculate the signal strength from the three nearest phone masts and therefore getting a more accurate positioning of the phone. As you can imagine this complicated process will consume battery life if it is done a lot, and especially when it takes place unnecessarily.

Oliver Haslam has suggested:

 “it appears that iOS 5′s GM release introduced a bug that causes the Setting Time Zone function to keep the location tracking circuitry running constantly, draining battery power considerably. Switching it off may mean that your iPhone will no longer set its own time zone when you travel, but that’s a small price to pay for having your iPhone last more than 12 hours on a full charge… We have tested this method on 4 different iPhone 4s handsets, including an iPhone 4 and an iPhone 3GS. All have reported drastically improved battery life after switching ‘Setting Time Zone’ off.”

Other have had other suggestions stating that they think that this service is making only little difference to the battery life.

A web and Java consultant, named David Hamilton, wrote on his twitter page:

“Two years working with dedicated GPS units taught me to be extremely careful with GPS settings: [it] kills battery very fast.”

However, discussions are still taking place within Apple over what exactly seems to be causing the battery drainage. There has been no comment so far about this made by Apple. However, we have seen reports claiming that engineers have began to address this problem and have started to contact customers who have reported this problem.

• The “Setting Time Zone” setting can be found in Settings -> Location Services -> scroll to bottom to “System Services” -> Setting Time Zone.

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