iOS 5.0.1 seems a bit of a mixed bag for users, and that's probably a charitable description. Apple support boards are filling up with page after page of reports from users that their iPhone battery life is worse than it was before. Some users say their battery life was fine until the upgrade. Others say it is far worse, and a few are seeing some improvement. Since one of the main features of the update was to fix battery life bugs, it's hard to call this update anything but a failure. Even if the reports are hallucinatory, the PR is very, very bad. Think 'antennagate'.
Here's a sample of some of the comments:
"Was running iOS 5.0 yesterday and had great battery life on my iPhone 4.... Update with OTA last night to iOS 5.0.1 and now just sitting at work and not surfing it is down to 55%. It has only been off the charger for 2 1/2 hours.... I haven't even talked on it today. Wow Apple... what a fix!"
"After installing iOS 5 in my iPhone 4s I noticed that my battery was drying 1% for every 1Min 36Sec. I believe every 1hr 20 Min i will hzave to charge my mobile. And there is no option to downgrade to 5.0. Irritating."
"Yes have the same problem. Was looking forward to having normal battery life on my new phone, but the new 5.0.1 update actually made it worse. I'm about to throw away my iPhone and go back to a blackberry... At least the blackberry held its charge for 2 full days."
In my own experience my battery life dropped dramatically when I installed iOS 5 on an iPhone 4 last month. When I upgraded to the iPhone 4S there wasn't any improvement, and the battery life was certainly behind the performance I had experienced before iOS 5 appeared. One bright spot was when I applied the 5.0.1 update from an airport via their WiFi. What an improvement over tethering to a computer -- the whole process took about 12 minutes.
Of course all the battery life experiences are anecdotal, and it may be that we're all using the new features so heavily that we're driving battery performance down. Of course, that won't explain why phones just sitting by themselves overnight are draining faster the before iOS 5 or iOS 5.0.1 appeared. It's pretty obvious there is some fire under all this smoke.
Apple hasn't commented on any of this new furor so far, but I wouldn't be surprised to see iOS 5.0.2 coming to an iPhone near you soon.
[Editor's note: I'm seeing improved battery life, but it's clear there is something at work here and it'll probably take Apple a bit longer to figure out why some iPhones (mine is an iPhone 4) are draining faster and some are not. - Victor Agreda, Jr.]
Apple iPhone 6s