Here’s something you might not have realized: even with an iPhone 5s that won’t power on due to a dead battery, there is a very good chance the M7 coprocessor will keep doing its job. This was the realization of one user when traveling abroad with his iPhone.
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iPhone 5s’ M7 keeps tracking motion data even on a dead battery

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Here’s something you might not have realized: even with an iPhone 5s that won’t power on due to a dead battery, there is a very good chance the M7 coprocessor found in Apple’s A7 CPU will keep doing its job, tracking motion data such as steps taken. This was the experience of one Reddit user when traveling with his iPhone.

When user Glarznak broke his iPhone charging cable abroad, rather than find a replacement he simply let his device run out of battery, ignoring it for the next four days. Upon returning to the US and charging his device, he discovered that Argus, a fitness tracking app, had continued to log data for steps taken during the time that the phone’s battery was dead. He stated he was “both incredibly impressed and slightly terrified.”

He has reason to be impressed, but terrified? Not so much. This sort of functionality is more or less an advertised feature of the M7 component found in the iPhone 5s’ processing suite. The chip, which tracks, logs, and completes computations based on motion data from the handset’s various sensors, operates extremely efficiently without taxing the main A7 processor found in the phone. And when an iPhone’s battery “dies?” It’s not actually completely devoid of power. The M7 processor, apparently, can maintain operation on even the minuscule amount of juice remaining.

Even still, the amount of charge remaining in the battery is not enough to power the phone’s cellular and wireless components, including GPS, meaning any motion data collected by the M7 remains local to the device. See, plenty of reasons to be impressed, but few to feel terrified by this capability.

For more about the M7 processor, check out our article detailing the many benefits it delivers for iPhone 5s users.

[via Reddit]

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