Apple Says Battery Performance of iPhone 6S A9 Chips Vary Only 2-3%, Ignores Heating Issues
After concerns shown by several iPhone 6S users over the different chip manufacturers that resulted in varying battery performances, Apple has released a statement in response to TechCrunch’s inquiry that it would only result in a difference of 2 to 3% in battery life.
According to Apple, the larger results of roughly 2 hours of battery time difference are ‘manufactured’. The firm suggests that using benchmarking tools shows unrealistic battery times, and Apple’s own data gathered through diagnostic information from users suggests the difference to be negligible in reality.
With the Apple-designed A9 chip in your iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus, you are getting the most advanced smartphone chip in the world. Every chip we ship meets Apple’s highest standards for providing incredible performance and deliver great battery life, regardless of iPhone 6s capacity, color, or model.
Certain manufactured lab tests which run the processors with a continuous heavy workload until the battery depletes are not representative of real-world usage, since they spend an unrealistic amount of time at the highest CPU performance state. It’s a misleading way to measure real-world battery life. Our testing and customer data show the actual battery life of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, even taking into account variable component differences, vary within just 2-3% of each other.
Apple suggests that this small variation is within manufacturing tolerance for the device, and would be observed even between iPhones with same manufactured chipsets.
The problem is, even though benchmarks aren’t exactly the best methods of analyzing cellphone performance, if Apple’s statement of tolerance were true, such drastic (roughly two hours) differences would be observed in benchmarks even if two iPhones with the same chip-manufacturer were used.
However, benchmarks show consistency as far as two identical chip manufacturers are concerned, but a huge difference when a Samsung A9 chip is compared to a TSMC A9 chip.
The other issue that Apple hasn’t addressed in this statement is of heating, which is much more evident in the Samsung A9 variant than the larger but more economical TSMC chip. The Samsung chip tends to run several degrees hotter than the TSMC A9.
The higher than expected operating temperature under load would result in faster battery drainage (increased resistance within the circuit), especially during performance-intensive tasks such as gaming.
Hopefully, Apple can give another (more thorough) response that also takes these heating issues into account.