iOS 8.1 Battery Life Problems Hit iPhone

Earlier this month, Apple released its brand new iOS 8.1 update. And while iOS 8.1 delivered both Apple Pay and bug fixes for iOS 8 problems, that’s not all it brought. iOS 8.1 problems remain a problem for iPhone and iPad users and iPhone users in particular have started complaining about bad iOS 8.1 battery life after the update.

In September, Apple released the iOS 8.1 update into the beta program. For several weeks it, and its developer partners, poked and prodded the update ahead of its unannounced public release. In mid-October, Apple took the stage to announce several new products and there, it confirmed an October release for the highly regarded iOS 8.1 upgrade for iPhone and iPad.



iPhone 6

iPhone and iPad users had been keeping their eyes peeled for an iOS 8.1 release due to the iOS 8 problems plaguing iPhone and iPad in the weeks after the iOS 8.0 update release. iOS 8 problems included the usual Wi-Fi complaints and battery life issues though they also included some frustrating iMessage issues and landscape mode issues. While Apple rolled out iOS 8.0.1 and iOS 8.0.2 to help with iOS 8 issues, iOS 8.1 was seen as the first major bug fix update.

iOS 8.1 rolled out a week ago and as we’ve noted in our reviews, the iOS 8.1 update for iPhone and iPad seems to have tackled some of the annoying problems that emerged last month in iOS 8.0. But as we’ve learned over the past week, it hasn’t tackled them all.


iOS 8.1 problems are a big issue with some iPhone and iPad users with problems ranging from bad Bluetooth to issues with apps to random reboots. In the past few days, a growing number of iPhone users have begun to complain about iOS 8.1 battery life problems with many noticing a considerable drop after installing Apple’s new software.


Apple threads are starting to fill up with complaints about bad iOS 8.1 battery life. iPhone users, and iPhone 5 users in particular, are seeing abnormal battery drain after replacing their previous update with iOS 8.1. One user told Gotta Be Mobile that his iPhone 5 battery life has jumped from “61% to 59%, 31% to 29% and 16% to 14% during charge and or discharge.” Other iPhone users are noticing odd movements with battery life so it doesn’t appear to be isolated.

iOS 8.1 on iPhone 6

iOS 8.1 battery drain is another issue for iPhone users. A long time iPhone users told us that his iPhone 5s was “fully charged iPhone at 11:30” but that it had dropped to 75% within minutes. He noted that he simply  “read a few articles and took a shower, then have been working at my own computer” meaning that there’s no good reason why his battery life dropped the way that it did. Many other iPhone users are noticing the same thing including owners of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

With no iOS 8.1.1 update in sight, and no guarantee that it will contain battery life fixes when and if it does arrive, iPhone users on iOS 8.1 must rely on unofficial fixes to cure battery life issues.

Speck CandyShell iPhone 6 Review - 3-X3

We’ve outlined several ways iPhone and iPad users can fix battery life problems including isolating apps causing battery drain, limiting background app refresh, limiting the use of auto brightness, resetting the iPhone, and more. These fixes don’t come from Apple but they’ve helped to improve iOS battery life on iPhones and iPads in the past. These fixes also have the potential to solve those odd battery jumping issues that iPhone users are reporting.


If nothing works, iPhone and iPad users should try restoring the iOS 8.1 update. Restoring from a backup often dislodges battery life problems and can help bring performance back to an acceptable level. If that doesn’t work, a trip to the Apple Store and a visit with a Genius might be in order.