This iPhone charging feature is facing scrutiny: report
An iPhone charging feature that aims to reduce a user’s carbon footprint is reportedly drawing criticism.
Clean Energy Charging is built into recent versions of the tech giant’s iOS 16 software. In October, Apple called on the global supply chain to be low carbon by 2030.
It was released in an October update, but has recently come under scrutiny.
“I’ve turned off clean energy charging to increase my carbon footprint. I believe in feeding trees,” Georgia Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene tweeted in February.
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According to The Washington Post, Clean Energy Charging is on by default, though it’s not the first time Apple has done so.
“I’m glad about it Apple is working on dynamic charging to shift to low-carbon hours,” tweeted Tim Latimer, CEO of a geothermal energy company called Fervo Energy. “But the way they’ve rolled it out isn’t great. Limited awareness, default position is logged in.”
“We should demand more transparency and choice for clean energy solutions or it will backfire,” he said.
Apple says the phone can be selectively charged when electricity with lower carbon emissions is available. When the capability is enabled and the iPhone is connected to a charger, it gets a forecast of carbon emissions in the local energy grid and uses it to charge the phone in times of cleaner energy production.
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Clean Energy Charging is only available in the United States. The feature will not be enabled if the loading behavior is variable or if the user is in a new location.
“Because of this and to get the carbon emissions forecast for your area, some location settings must be enabled to activate Clean Energy Charging. Your iPhone does not send any location information used for this feature to Apple,” Appel said.
If a user needs to fully charge a phone sooner, they can touch and hold the notification on the lock screen that indicates when the iPhone is fully charged when using the setting, and then tap Charge Now.
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To disable the feature completely, go to Settings, click Battery, select Battery health and charging, and uncheck Clean energy charging.