Scary iPhone 5, 4S battery life continues in 2013

By Daniel Chubb - Jan 6, 2013

We would have thought iPhone 4S, and 5, battery life problems would be a thing of the past in 2013, although it seems things have gone from bad to worst for some users. The iPhone 4S has had its fair share of battery life issues, but most users reported everything had been fixed after a few iOS 5 updates.

Now that the majority of users are running iOS 6 on their iPhone 4S/5, it seems that the dreaded battery life problems are returning for some people. Towards the end of September we touched on a few iOS 6 problems, and most notably had been the battery drain issues thousands of users were reporting in forums. That article received over 270 comments about various problems with the iPhone 3GS, 4/4S, and the latest iPhone 5.

We’ve been contacted by a number of our readers already this year about the iPhone 5 and 4S, and a few emails we received commented on bad battery life, so even after the latest iOS 6 updates it seems that the problem is still around. It’s worth noting that the iPhone 4S is yet to received the iOS 6.0.2 update.

One iPhone 4S user had this to say, “I charged my wife’s phone which is about 3 months old iPhone 4S to 89%. In one hour it went down to 32% just sitting on the table…Scary and disappointing. I’m going to the Apple Store to express my feeling towards this“.

This is not just bad battery life with the iPhone 4S; this is dramatic draining of the battery at more than half the battery in one hour. This is an extreme case, but this person isn’t alone. It doesn’t seem to be an issue with hardware, and in most cases happens after updating iOS 6. We reached out to Apple for a comment on this situation, but we’re yet to hear back.

How is your iPhone 4S / 5 battery life at the start of 2013? We have three iPhones in this office, one iPhone 5 and two 4S models, and all are reaching the quoted battery life. It seems this problem is one that starts with select users after updating the software.

It is worth noting that you can turn off some location services within iOS 6, which might help increase battery life, but if your handset is draining rapidly then this won’t help much.

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  • Mark Maciw

    Fixed it. Seems to be accessing wifi continuously as shown by flashing light on hub. Turned off stupid until fixed. Can’t be sure but think calendar alerts was issue. Used to drain in few hours and now back to normal.

  • Kirstie

    I bought a brand new iPhone 4S a week ago today and my battery was diabolical. I had fully charged it before bed, I went to bed at 1am and woke up at 5am to use the toilet and it had gone from 100% to 13% in that time. I took it back to the 3 store where I bought it and they replaced it for me. I have the same issue with my 2nd brand new phone. It’s a disgrace you expect that when you buy a brand new phone that the quality of it is top standard. I’m very disappointed 🙁

  • Dave

    YES just started in the last few days, brutal…solution yet????

  • Danny Dodge

    If you updated from to 6 you will have this problem until you restore you’re I phone to factory settings. Don’t reinstall your backup this impetus the battery drain settings it’s gebauer of corrupt data during upgrade. No other non hacky way to fix it. But battery life on ios6 is really good after.