This nagging doubt has been troubling many iPhone and iPad users — even my sister, who purchased an iPhone 4S perhaps a year ago, against my counsel, was recently complaining to me that her iPhone became ridiculously slow within a couple of weeks. Incidentally, just when she had purchased her iPhone 4S, the next version of the phone, iPhone 5, was introduced in the market. So yes, news such as this one, that perhaps Apple deliberately slows down your iPhone or iPad just before the release of the next device so that even if you don’t want to upgrade, you end up upgrading because you are fed up of the performance of your current mobile phone. It is called the “planned obsolescence”.
The above graph shows that there is a spike in Google searches for “iPhone slow” exactly around the dates when the new version of the phone is about to hit the market. According to this article in New York Times, a professor shared this doubt with his class that his iPhone begins to get slow whenever the new phone is about to be launched and one of her students, Laura Trucco, a Ph.D. student in economics at Harvard, used Google trends to generate the above graph.
Could it be happening?
Although the report says that the similar result was not visible for Samsung devices but I have personal experience that even these devices get inexplicably slow without reason or rhyme. In fact, despite multiple resets, before I had bought my new HTC Desire 816, my Samsung Galaxy Tab had become so slow that I couldn’t believe that a modern-day device could work so slow. Despite multiple resets and despite removing all the resource hungry applications. What has been the difference? I let my operating system be upgraded on its own. In fact, even today my phone auto-upgraded my operating system and I think since there is no need for me to upgrade to a new operating system for a long time to come, I should find ways to disable this feature because I’m pretty sure, as they go on installing the newer versions of the operating system, even my new phone will begin to get slow.