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Consumer Reports Disproves 'Chipgate,' Finds No Difference In iPhone 6s Battery Life

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To meet the high demand for the launch of the iPhone 6s, Apple decided to use two different A9 processor chips—one from Samsung and the other from TSMC—to prevent previous delays caused by not having enough chips to power the smartphone before its release.

But because Apple is using two different chips, there have been rumors the iPhone 6s devices with the Samsung chips have a shorter battery life and run hotter than the devices powered by the TSMC chip.

However, Consumer Reports published a new report it says disproves these "chipgate" rumors, finding that there are "no appreciable differences" in battery life between the Samsung and TSMC versions.

Consumer Reports tested both versions of the new iPhone by using real-world usage rather than battery life benchmarks to determine whether or not these claims were true. They used the Lirum Info Lite app to determine if the device had the Model N71mAP chip ID from TSMC or N71AP for the Samsung version.

To ensure accuracy, each phone was tested using the same carrier, in this case T-Mobile, with the latest version of iOS 9.02. Consumer Reports then changed settings to make sure the display, wireless connections, running apps, etc., were equal on both devices.

According to the report, the magazine then measured the battery life with continuous activity on the cellular network. "In one test, for instance, we made the phones transmit at a nominal +10 decibels per milliwatt (dBm) on the same channel in the commonly used Frequency Band 5," the report says. In another check, testers set the display brightness to about 150 NITS (approximately 50 percent) using a digital elimination level meter, switching off the auto-brightness setting to make sure the room's lighting didn't tamper with results.

Consumer Reports found that each of the phones ran for about 5 hours, with a negligible duration difference of less than 2 percent.

After further testing that included data-intensive activities such as loading various web pages and playing music, testers found that both phones quit at the same time after more than 11 hours and 600-plus web page downloads, resulting in a difference of less than 1 percent.

Testing the phone's temperatures between the two devices, Consumer Reports found that there was again a less than 1 percent difference between the iPhone 6s with the Samsung and the one it the TSMC chip, with surface temperatures reaching 84 degrees F during the 11 hours of testing.

While it's confirmed that Apple's iPhone 6s and 6s Plus have a slightly shorter batter life than their predecessor, the iPhone 6, the reports also confirms there is no difference in battery life or temperature in the 6s devices.

Source: Consumer Reports

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