Apple has issued an apology after being criticised for admitting that it has deliberately slowed down older iPhone models with low-capacity batteries. The company claimed that it has taken this action to extend the life of the phones by preventing damage to sensitive electronic components and keep the phones from shutting down unexpectedly.

“Lithium-ion batteries become less capable of supplying peak current demands when in cold conditions, [when they] have a low battery charge or as they age over time, which can result in the device unexpectedly shutting down to protect its electronic components,” the company said.

Apple has issued a statement saying that it will lower the price of replacement lithium-ion batteries from £79 to £25 and will release a software update early this year to allow customers to check the health of their iPhones’ batteries.

The company added that it is implementing these measures to address the concerns raised by customers and regain the loyalty and trust of those who thought that the company was deliberately slowing down older-model iPhones to force them to buy newer models.

“At Apple, our customers’ trust means everything to us. We will never stop working to earn and maintain it. We are able to do the work we love only because of your faith and support – and we will never forget that or take it for granted,” it said.

US customers have initiated eight separate lawsuits against Apple because of its intentional slowing down of older iPhone models, and legal action is also pending in France and Israel.