Li-ION is the most advanced, commonly available batteries that are used in portable electronics like laptops and phones. That is because unlike Nickel Cadmium [NiCad], they do not develop ‘charge memories’. And they are better for small electronics than Nickel Metal Hydride [NiMH] because of shorter charge time and higher energy density, both critical for the uses of portable phones.
Li-ION batteries typically fail faster than NiCad because they wear out in less charge cycles, which mean consumers get fewer charges before their batteries will need replacement.
Apple has not designed flaws into its iPhone product with regard to battery management.
What Apple has done is provide software that allows its iPhone users who want to keep their phones to manage their batteries by slowing down the processor during times of lower power and to keep the phones from turning off spontaneously. Contrary to what many have said about this story, what Apple is doing is not abnormal at all.
There are two computer chip manufacturers that you may have heard of, Intel and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD), that have built advanced power management technology into their chipset designs.