Q: Is Apple also slowing down older iPads? If so, will it replace batteries at a reduced rate?
A: In response to accusations that it intentionally hindered older products, Apple’s public explanation and apology says that only certain iPhone models were affected by the software updates designed to prevent the battery from conking out unexpectedly. In fact, Apple’s mea culpa states, “This power management feature is specific to iPhone and does not apply to any other Apple products.”
The “power management” tool was introduced in early 2017 with iOS 10.2.1 for iPhones. Longer times for apps to start up, lowered audio volume and screen brightness, a disabled camera flash and jerkier frame rates are signs of the performance reduction in action. Apple said only the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, and iPhone SE models were included at first, but it added the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus with the iOS 11.2 update in December.
To make amends, Apple is replacing batteries in older iPhones for $29 (instead of the usual $79) until the end of the year; new batteries typically let the phone avoid the power-management throttle kicking in. However, Apple’s price for an out-of-warranty iPad battery replacement is still $99.
Older iPads might be running slower because the latest software is more demanding and is optimized for the processors in newer models. You may be able to boost the performance of older hardware with the standard tricks, like optimizing your settings — including lowering screen brightness, turning off push alerts and disabling location services when not in use. Dumping unused apps and avoiding extreme hot and cold external temperatures when using the iPad can help, too.
Watching Netflix en Français
Q: I have a Netflix account for streaming only. Is there a list of all the movies and shows available with French-dubbed audio?
A: Netflix supports alternate audio and subtitles in multiple languages for much of its content, but not every show or movie is available in every supported language. One way to see what items are available in French (or another language) in your region is to log into your Netflix account and point your browser to netflix.com/subtitles.
On the Audio & Subtitles page, use the drop-down menus to select Audio or onscreen Subtitles, and then choose a language. In the United States, 18 languages (including French, German, Hindi, Spanish, Tagalog and more) are listed. Once you have made your menu selections, Netflix shows you the available content.
When you have chosen a show you know has French audio available, you need to enable the alternate dialogue track. For smartphones and tablets, start the show, then tap the screen and then tap the word-balloon icon that appears at the top. In the menu that opens, select French from the list to hear the audio track in that language.
Getting to the language setting on a set-top streaming box varies by model, so check your help guide. On the Netflix app on a Roku box, for example, choose a video, select Audio & Subtitles on the description page and pick your language before going back to the description page and pressing the Play button.
You can change your preferred default language, style of subtitle text, auto-play preference and more in your Netflix account settings. To get there, log in to Netflix.com, select your profile icon on the right side of the screen and choose Account.