It was first reported a couple of months back that old iPhones with low-capacity batteries were slowing down. Apple eventually confirmed that it does slow down older iPhones that have naturally degraded batteries. The company has taken a lot of flak for this decision and even though it has since apologized, it's now having to deal with multiple “planned obsolescence” lawsuits.
People have naturally wondered if other manufacturers like Samsung do this as well. Samsung already confirmed three weeks ago that it doesn't do this and after Italian authorities launched an investigation, it has reiterated that claim.
Samsung doesn't believe in planned obsolescence
While conspiracy theorists believe that Apple slows down older iPhones intentionally to get customers to purchase a new one, it actually does that to prevent accidental shutdowns. Devices with older batteries can't deal with the surge in power requirement when the processor comes under heavy lead. This can cause the device to shutdown unexpectedly.
Apple limited the processor speed on older devices to ensure that there wasn't a spike big enough that the battery was not able to cope with. That obviously involved slowing down customers' iPhones, no matter how noble the intention. The company has been heavily criticised for this decision and it has now promised to release a software update which will let users opt out of this functionality.
No such claims have been made against Samsung. The company previously said that it does not reduce CPU performance through software updates over the lifecycles of its smartphones. The Italian Authority for Market and Competition announced yesterday that both Apple and Samsung did not tell their customers that they release software updates which intentionally slow down their smartphones and that it's now investigating the matter.
Samsung has denied the planned obsolescence claims yet again. The company issued the following statement today:
Samsung does not provide the software updates to reduce the product performance over the life cycle of the device. We will fully cooperate with Italian Authority for Market and Competition's investigation in Italy to clarify the facts.