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iPhone 4S turns off when using camera without battery being drained

11562 Views 30 Replies Latest reply: Mar 16, 2014 8:49 AM by Kate31 RSS
  • mollivan Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Me too. My iPhone 4s intermittently shuts down and displays the no power plug in symbol. It's dead until I can plug it in. But when I plug it in, it can show 70-80% power remaining, and if I then immediately unplug it, it works fine for ages before needing a recharge. It's hard to believe that this is a battery charge issue.


    It has always happened to me when I use the camera app to take photos while GPS is on (tracking with the Cyclemeter app). But it's frustratingly intermittent. Usually I can take photos fine with Cyclemeter tracking, but perhaps once a week, this combination kills the iPhone.


    It's **very** annoying. I'm now reluctant to use the camera app when the GPS is running, and I'm contemplating always carrying an external battery with me so I can restart the thing when it crashes.

  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (24,420 points)

    Your battery gauge needs to be recalibrated. Run the battery down until the phone shuts off. If it shuts off above 1% charge it for a minute or two, then run it down again until it really gets to zero. Then charge for 4 hours with the wall charger without using the phone.

  • bromleynyc Calculating status...

    Did you ever find a solution to this? My 4s is doing precisely the same thing now. When I use the camera app it always shuts down even with battery level at 80%. And then shows empty until I start charging again and returns to previous charge. But it shuts down when using other apps as well.  Might be a result of iOS 7??

  • KelsoMayor Calculating status...

    I had this issue back on iOS 6 (and maybe before that), so I don't think we get to blame iOS 7 for this one.

  • Kalvin1632 Calculating status...

    The problem is definately not caused by iOS 7 and unfortunately not fixed by iOS 7.  It also happens to me more when colder (under 15 degrees celcius or so).


    It is truly a shame that Apple can't listen to these problems and act on them.  The whole iOS system will start to suffer a slow death by 1000 cuts if some of these smaller problems are not addressed in a reasonable amount of time.


    This is obviously a problem that cause a great deal of frustration to a certain set of users.

  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (24,420 points)

    I've had this occur occasionally with every version of iOS and every phone model. And I always have been able to fix it by recalibrating the battery gauge. I'm sure it happens because the phone "thinks" there is more in the battery than there actually is, so when an app that uses a lot of energy like the camera is launched the battery says "enough". I've had it happen with other apps sometimes; the have always been heavy power consumers. But my fix has always solved it.

  • mollivan Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    I tried Lawrence's suggestion (thanks!) early last week. Each time my iPhone 4s would shut down from lack of battery, I'd plug it in for just enough to have it turn on, then keep using it on batteries until it shut down again. I kept doing this for a good 20–30 minutes until it was really flat. Then I charged it up to full without touching it. I've not yet had my phone shut down when it's got some charge, so maybe that has helped (it might still be too early to tell).


    However, I still find that using the iPhone camera app while the GPS in Cyclemeter is running often crashes other open apps (most annoyingly Filemaker Go 12, which when crashes loses the contents of the text field I was last using in the open record). Until I find a solution to that, I have to close down all open Filemaker Go databases before using the camera when the GPS is tracking. I forgot to do it again today and lost my entered text from a record. Perhaps this is a separate issue to the "battery crash" issue, but it's odd that this was what typically triggered my battery crashes.

  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (24,420 points)

    Definitely a separate issue. If you have Diagnostics & Usage enabled in your System Services each time an app crashes a report is generated. When you then sync the phone with iTunes that report is copied to Apple, who forwards it to the developer. You should also file a report with the developers. It is probably an undesired interaction between the multiple apps that are using the GPS. BTW, I love Cyclemeter.

  • mollivan Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Thanks Lawrence. I just checked and I've got Diagnostics & Usage turned on. I might post something on the Filemaker Go user forum (I haven't found anyone else mentioning this yet).


    (Yes, Cyclemeter's great.)

  • mollivan Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    By the way, I made a mistake in my earlier post. I'm not using Filemaker Go 12 but the earlier (paid) version, 11.0.2.

  • the shine Calculating status...

    Got the battery replaced on mine and it solved the problem. Apparently the battery had leaked and that is what was causing the problem.

  • frattwins Calculating status...

    I have the exact same problem...iphone 4S shuts off when using the camera and shows battery drained even when there was charge left.  The only way to restart is to plug in to a charger.  Very annoying since it's left me stranded with no camera and I totally missed the shot I was counting on.  And especially since the battery really has a charge.  Any solutions?  I purchased a new battery and am planning to replace mine.  I will repost if this fixes it.

  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (24,420 points)

    The solution has already been posted to this thread. It is probably not a bad battery, but a battery gauge that needs recalibration.

  • Stretch25309 Calculating status...

    That's not the solution for all, mine an my son's have consistently done it for months. Only on the camera app and in both iOS 6 and 7. Every now and then it will start back up on its own but normally it requires a charger. Ours have both din it with both dead batteries and freshly charged batteries. Min has done it a handful of times when running GPS apps too.


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