iOS 15.1.1 & watchOS 8.1: Fast battery drain from "App Store" app

After I updated my iPhone 12 Pro to 15.1.1, and my Apple Watch SE to watchOS 8.1, the iPhone’s battery has been draining fast … but only after an initial connection to my Apple Watch. When I check my iPhone’s Settings > Battery and scroll down to see who the culprits is, it’s the App Store app. Anyone else having this fast battery-drain issue? In my case, the App Store app is using 45% of the battery, even though it is ‘alive’ for less than 3 minutes total. Before, with my identically very light everyday usage, my iPhone battery lasted 36 hours. Immediately after updating to 15.1.1 and 8.1, no matter what ‘repairs’ and reboots I try, it dies after about 10-12 hours. This almost seems normal-ish, until you look at Settings > Battery and see that the App Store app is running amok. Reboots and even a wipe and re-pairing of the watch do not help.

This did NOT happen at all under iOS 15.1 and watchOS 8 (or earlier). It has happened everyday since I updated to 15.1.1 and 8.1.

I note that these exact same symptoms were a big discussion topic on Apple’s own discussion boards back in 2017, and once again after the iOS 14 update. It seems to be mainly related to having the Watch connect to the iPhone, but that’s kind of the whole point of the Apple Watch for most of us. Any thoughts?

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Yes, I have at least once seen rapid battery drain and the top user was the App Store. I did a force quit on the AS app, after which the problem has not reoccurred, even though I’ve used the AS daily since. Without quitting. Causation or coincidence? I don’t know.

This happened to me once after an update to an older version of iOS, but in Settings / App Store, turning off “video autoplay” fixed that issue for me for good. (I also rarely opened the App Store app.)

See this Tidbits discussion:

In particular a recent post “for me, turning off Settings / App Store / Video Autoplay seemed to fix that battery issue…”
This could be your App Store issue. However it did not fully rectify my battery drain.

Thanks for the good thoughts. I’m trying them out.
• I force quit the App Store app (up-swiped it in the iPhone’s Phantom Zone, whatever that’s called). No effect - still fast battery drain.
• Settings > App Store > Video Autoplay. I checked and it was never on for me, so that’s not it.
• WiFi: definitely something here! With WiFi off (and Cellular on, so my iPhone is still connected to the outside world, but no auto-downloads allowed over Cellular), essentially zero battery drain, and the App Store app doesn’t even appear in the Settings > Battery usage chart.
• Next testing steps: (a) I’m going to leave WiFi off but turn on permissions for App Store to “Always Ask” when on Cellular, regarding auto-downloading, to see if that triggers fast battery drain. That is, is it the App Store app in general? Or just when WiFi is on? (b) Then I’ll turn WiFi back on and see if the problem returns. Slow process, as I’m allowing about 1/2 day for each new adventure.

Thanks again for the good thoughts. When I’m away from home, I don’t need the WiFi to be on, and that’s really saving battery.