iOS 11 is lying to you. Sure, the operating system is full of new features, fixes, and a generally more pleasant aesthetic, but one change is rubbing me (and other battery-conscious users) the wrong way. The revamped Control Center‘s actions when dealing with the disabling of wireless connectivity are misleading, telling users their Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connections are off when that isn’t the case.
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Why Control Center Doesn’t Really Help
In previous iterations of Control Center, both the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth toggles functioned as simple on / off switches. When on, they’d follow their standard connecting protocol: Wi-Fi would attempt to connect to familiar networks, Bluetooth to familiar devices. In iOS 11, pressing the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth icons simply disconnects the phone from whatever Wi-Fi network or Bluetooth device it was using, leaving the power-hungry radios inside your iOS device on.
In that way, Control Center is tricking iOS users into believing their device’s Wi-Fi and Bluetooth radios are off when they’re actually still up and running, enabling services like AirDrop, AirPlay, Apple Watch connectivity and Continuity, while depleting what remains of your battery. Apple acknowledges the change in its support documents, but doesn’t provide a way to adjust the behaviour of either connection icon.
How to Actually Turn Off Your Connections
Here’s what to do: once you’re in Settings, select the Wi-Fi (or Bluetooth) service and toggle the switch from there. Simple as that. You can also select Control Center’s Aeroplane Mode to turn the connections off, but that will also shut down your cellular data connection.
I understand Apple’s concern about connectivity and convenience, but until it addresses the issue of battery life of its iOS devices, I’d rather have the option of turning the two radios off completely. Besides, if I’m turning Wi-Fi or Bluetooth off, wouldn’t you think it’s because I don’t want to use it anymore? Come on, folks.