Apple not requiring failed iPhone battery diagnostic test before $29 replacement

Posted:
in iPhone
Apple stores are reportedly offering their discounted battery replacements to any iPhone owner willing to pay the fee regardless of whether or not an old battery passes testing, and some users are reporting partial refunds on earlier battery exchanges -- but this is not a universal policy.




The company has issued instructions to store staff on the matter, French site iGeneration noted on Tuesday. Apple launched $29 replacements last week, a month ahead of schedule.

Out-of-warranty replacements normally cost $79, but public outcry -- including a flurry of lawsuits -- followed its admission that it throttles iPhones with weak batteries, nominally to prevent sudden shutdowns that could damage electronics. Lawsuits have charged that intentionally or not, this prompts people to buy newer iPhones.

iGeneration added that Apple is also offering refunds to people who recently paid full price. AppleInsider, however, has confirmed that the refunds don't represent a universal policy, and are at present handled on a case-by-case basis.

Apple is only selling $29 swaps to people with an iPhone 6 or better, and only through Dec. 2018. Owners of older hardware will probably have to turn to third parties.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 53
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,245member
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    edited January 2 toysandme
  • Reply 2 of 53
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    My understanding is only the 6 & 7 are covered for the $29 replacement.  It sounds like the software “fix” will prevent strain on the newer phones extending battery life, making an early replacement.


  • Reply 3 of 53
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 29,095member
    Fantastic. I’ll be able to keep this 6S for another 1-2 years.
    toysandmeargonaut
  • Reply 4 of 53
    78Bandit78Bandit Posts: 167member
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    Apple's current diagnostic testing for battery capacity won't identify all instances where a battery can't supply the proper voltage under load.  In those circumstances phones will test good but will still be throttled up to 50%.  I would look for the informal policy of replacing batteries at the customers request for $29 to go away once Apple releases its new Battery Health app and the user and the Genius Bar employees can see if the phone is throttled because of voltage insufficiency.

    I'm also hoping Apple speced a better battery in the iPhone 8 and X as well as worked on their chipset power draw requirements in designing the A11 Bionic.  No way Apple engineers think it is acceptable to throttle a phone that is just over a year old; that was a stopgap measure to cover for a design flaw in the 6, 6S, and 7.
    larrya
  • Reply 5 of 53
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    Sign me up!
  • Reply 6 of 53
    robjnrobjn Posts: 186member
    The lawsuits allege that the new power/resource management system that throttles peak processor activity prompts people to buy new phones.

    Actually, the oppose is surely true, Apple introduced this new resource management system to prevent phones from suddenly shutting down. Now if someone has a phone that randomly shuts down they are surely highly likely to buy a new phone.

    So if Apple wanted users to replace their phones as early as possible they would have done nothing. Phones that seemingly randomly shut down in the middle of whatever you are doing are useless.

    Apple introduced a system that resurrects these phones and makes them usable. A great many people that would have got a new phone when faced with shutdowns were able to keep it for longer. A much smaller number of people would have been able to detect the slowdown and upgraded as a result, many of these people would have upgraded anyway if they faced the shutdown problem.

    So the lawsuits hang on hypothetical arguments about what people would or would not have done in an alternate reality.

    Never-the-less it is absurd that Apple faces lawsuits for essentially fixing phones that are “broken” due to spent resources. What Apple did was keep these devices working for longer - This is the opposite to the “planned obsolescence” accusations in France.
    StrangeDaysbonobobbb-15dewmeclarker99
  • Reply 7 of 53
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,245member
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    My understanding is only the 6 & 7 are covered for the $29 replacement.  It sounds like the software “fix” will prevent strain on the newer phones extending battery life, making an early replacement.


    The 9to5 article says any iPhone 6 or later...If true, that would include the iPhone X. 
  • Reply 8 of 53
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,245member

    78Bandit said:
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    Apple's current diagnostic testing for battery capacity won't identify all instances where a battery can't supply the proper voltage under load.  In those circumstances phones will test good but will still be throttled up to 50%.  I would look for the informal policy of replacing batteries at the customers request for $29 to go away once Apple releases its new Battery Health app and the user and the Genius Bar employees can see if the phone is throttled because of voltage insufficiency.

    I'm also hoping Apple speced a better battery in the iPhone 8 and X as well as worked on their chipset power draw requirements in designing the A11 Bionic.  No way Apple engineers think it is acceptable to throttle a phone that is just over a year old; that was a stopgap measure to cover for a design flaw in the 6, 6S, and 7.
    OMG this is not a friggin' design flaw. Will you people STOP spreading this misinformation! Learn about batteries before you post stupid shit like this. Please!
    StrangeDaysbb-15JaiOh81chasm
  • Reply 9 of 53
    AI_liasAI_lias Posts: 210member
    robjn said:
    The lawsuits allege that the new power/resource management system that throttles peak processor activity prompts people to buy new phones.

    Actually, the oppose is surely true, Apple introduced this new resource management system to prevent phones from suddenly shutting down. Now if someone has a phone that randomly shuts down they are surely highly likely to buy a new phone.

    So if Apple wanted users to replace their phones as early as possible they would have done nothing. Phones that seemingly randomly shut down in the middle of whatever you are doing are useless.

    Apple introduced a system that resurrects these phones and makes them usable. A great many people that would have got a new phone when faced with shutdowns were able to keep it for longer. A much smaller number of people would have been able to detect the slowdown and upgraded as a result, many of these people would have upgraded anyway if they faced the shutdown problem.

    So the lawsuits hang on hypothetical arguments about what people would or would not have done in an alternate reality.

    Never-the-less it is absurd that Apple faces lawsuits for essentially fixing phones that are “broken” due to spent resources. What Apple did was keep these devices working for longer - This is the opposite to the “planned obsolescence” accusations in France.
    If iphone shuts down unexpectedly when there is battery charge left, I would consider that a defect, and would not buy a new iPhone, but take it in for repair. However, if my iPhone just seems to be slow, but otherwise works normally, then I would consider whether I should not just buy a new phone. People almost never decide to upgrade their phone to a new model based only on the fact that the older one is slower. That is just one part of the decision which might tip the scales just enough that they pull the trigger on a new phone, instead of changing the battery and keep using the old one. It's more subtle than people think. 
    If Apple designed these older phones in such a way that the CPU demand overwhelms a 1-2 year-old battery, that seems like a design defect to me. 
    edited January 2 muthuk_vanalingambonobob
  • Reply 10 of 53
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 5,913member
    78Bandit said:
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    Apple's current diagnostic testing for battery capacity won't identify all instances where a battery can't supply the proper voltage under load.  In those circumstances phones will test good but will still be throttled up to 50%.  I would look for the informal policy of replacing batteries at the customers request for $29 to go away once Apple releases its new Battery Health app and the user and the Genius Bar employees can see if the phone is throttled because of voltage insufficiency.

    I'm also hoping Apple speced a better battery in the iPhone 8 and X as well as worked on their chipset power draw requirements in designing the A11 Bionic.  No way Apple engineers think it is acceptable to throttle a phone that is just over a year old; that was a stopgap measure to cover for a design flaw in the 6, 6S, and 7.
    Bla, bla, bla,bla. This is mass hysteria and Apple is letting those hysterical users replace their batteries if they want to. And as sure as death and taxes we’ll next start to see reports and articles claiming the battery swap didn’t speed up the phones and Apple is still throttling their devices to force upgrades. On Apple’s own discussion boards people are now claiming ALL their Apple devices are being slowed down, including the Mac Mini, the iMac, the Watch, everything. It’s a huge dirty snowball that gets bigger with each hysterical claim. And with each future update of iOS we’ll hear from the tinfoil hat crowd that Apple is doing something else to force people to buy new phones. And it all started years ago when people tried to prove their theories by counting subject hits on Google.

    I can read it now in my mind. iOS 11.2.2 is released and the swarm says their iPhones are even slower now because Apple did it gain!
    StrangeDaysbb-15
  • Reply 11 of 53
    goncalo81goncalo81 Posts: 2unconfirmed, member
    What happen if I already replace my battery with a battery from amazon!?
    can I still go to apple store and replace it for 29$!?
    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 12 of 53
    jbdragonjbdragon Posts: 1,700member
    lkrupp said:
    78Bandit said:
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    Apple's current diagnostic testing for battery capacity won't identify all instances where a battery can't supply the proper voltage under load.  In those circumstances phones will test good but will still be throttled up to 50%.  I would look for the informal policy of replacing batteries at the customers request for $29 to go away once Apple releases its new Battery Health app and the user and the Genius Bar employees can see if the phone is throttled because of voltage insufficiency.

    I'm also hoping Apple speced a better battery in the iPhone 8 and X as well as worked on their chipset power draw requirements in designing the A11 Bionic.  No way Apple engineers think it is acceptable to throttle a phone that is just over a year old; that was a stopgap measure to cover for a design flaw in the 6, 6S, and 7.
    Bla, bla, bla,bla. This is mass hysteria and Apple is letting those hysterical users replace their batteries if they want to. And as sure as death and taxes we’ll next start to see reports and articles claiming the battery swap didn’t speed up the phones and Apple is still throttling their devices to force upgrades. On Apple’s own discussion boards people are now claiming ALL their Apple devices are being slowed down, including the Mac Mini, the iMac, the Watch, everything. It’s a huge dirty snowball that gets bigger with each hysterical claim. And with each future update of iOS we’ll hear from the tinfoil hat crowd that Apple is doing something else to force people to buy new phones. And it all started years ago when people tried to prove their theories by counting subject hits on Google.

    I can read it now in my mind. iOS 11.2.2 is released and the swarm says their iPhones are even slower now because Apple did it gain!
    Maybe Apple should just stop with major OS updates on older devices all together? After all each year the OS grows and slows down older devices, year after year. That's just a normal fact of things. It's like this with every OS, but it's making the device slower, EVIL APPLE!!!!
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 13 of 53
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 2,559administrator
    macxpress said:
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    My understanding is only the 6 & 7 are covered for the $29 replacement.  It sounds like the software “fix” will prevent strain on the newer phones extending battery life, making an early replacement.


    The 9to5 article says any iPhone 6 or later...If true, that would include the iPhone X. 
    Given that the 8 and X are less than a year old, I'd presume those batteries (for now) are free. Ask again in October/November, I guess.
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 14 of 53
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 5,913member
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    Yes, some will try to start an annual tradition of changing batteries just because it’s cheap to do so. But this is precisely, in my opinion, why the $29 charge will be pretty short lived. This whole thing has taken on a life of its own as you can see from all the “what if’s” people are coming up with. 
  • Reply 15 of 53
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 4,567member
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    My understanding is only the 6 & 7 are covered for the $29 replacement.  It sounds like the software “fix” will prevent strain on the newer phones extending battery life, making an early replacement.
    This is not correct; the power management feature that limits peak power draws is only on expired batteries and according to John Gruber, at low battery levels. It is not in effect on new healthy batteries.
    edited January 2 bb-15
  • Reply 16 of 53
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 4,567member

    78Bandit said:
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    I'm also hoping Apple speced a better battery in the iPhone 8 and X as well as worked on their chipset power draw requirements in designing the A11 Bionic.  No way Apple engineers think it is acceptable to throttle a phone that is just over a year old; that was a stopgap measure to cover for a design flaw in the 6, 6S, and 7.
    Youre misunderstanding, they aren't throttling peak power draws on the 7 now, they're just added it to the list of models that can potentially throttle peak power draw when the battery eventually becomes used up. Unless you're performing like double or triple full charging cycles a day on your 7, you can't be there yet.
    edited January 2 bb-15
  • Reply 17 of 53
    glynhglynh Posts: 115member
    macxpress said:

    OMG this is not a friggin' design flaw. Will you people STOP spreading this misinformation! Learn about batteries before you post stupid shit like this. Please!
    Not a design flaw?

    Here is an excerpt from a log I kept on my iPhone 6S regarding battery shutdowns just over a year ago;


    Dec 2nd @8am

    Went from 51%->shut off

    Plug in charger, screen displayed empty battery, Apple Symbol and password screen. Entered password and battery now shows 50%

    Start of iOS 10.2 upgrade 27% and plugged in

    End of iOS 10.2 upgrade 6% and still plugged in!

    Battery meter now on 12% in time taken to write this!

    Dropped to 5% in 5 minutes while in pocket not being used!

    Wed 14th

    Low battery warning - 5 mins later down to 14% with no activity

    Fri 22nd

    Battery showing 38% when screen went black and phone switched off. Plugged in, phone rebooted and was showing 37% straight away

    Friday 29th

    Battery showing 36% when screen went blank and phone switched off. Plugged in but after 5-10 minutes the screen was still black. Plugged & replugged the cable and phone rebooted and was showing 62% straight away

    Tue 3rd

    Battery showing 10% when screen went blank and phone switched off. Plugged in but after 1hr screen was still black and phone hadn't turned on despite pressing home & side buttons. Unplugged Lightning cable and plugged back in. Phone rebooted and now showing 64%

    Sun 22nd

    Battery showing 35% when screen went blank and phone switched off. Plugged in, phone rebooted and was showing 34% straight away

    After being on charge for 30 mins still showing 34%

    Thurs 2nd Feb

    Took phone off charge this morning at 99% after being on charge all night. Within minutes it was down to 93%. Rebooted phone and noticed it dropping down from 85, 84, 83, 82 in just seconds!

    etc. etc.

    Then at some point this year after suffering for months I haven't had a single shutdown.

    Rubbish battery life yes (can be flat by lunchtime) but no shutdown which would indicate to me there has been a software change as batteries don't suddenly get better overnight! Not that lasting only half a day can by any stretch of the imagination be  considered getting better but at least it doesn’t shut down suddenly any more.

    This iPhone 6S was on the original serial number list for the FOC battery replacement long before this latest battery fiasco came about. I finally took it to the Apple Store this morning and long story short when I went back to collect it they had refused to replace the battery because the liquid ID tags inside the phone were red which indicated moisture/liquid ingress so they wriggled out of their responsibility there.

    I would gladly have paid the £25 to get the battery replaced while it was open on the bench despite the promised FOC warranty replacement but that wasn't even an option apparently.

    And to add insult to injury when they emailed me the zero cost receipt it stated Customer Declined Repair!

    edited January 2
  • Reply 18 of 53
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 5,913member

    78Bandit said:
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    I'm also hoping Apple speced a better battery in the iPhone 8 and X as well as worked on their chipset power draw requirements in designing the A11 Bionic.  No way Apple engineers think it is acceptable to throttle a phone that is just over a year old; that was a stopgap measure to cover for a design flaw in the 6, 6S, and 7.
    Youre misunderstanding, they aren't throttling peak power draws on the 7 now, they're just added it to the list of models that can potentially throttle peak power draw when the battery eventually becomes used up. Unless you're performing like double or triple full charging cycles a day on your 7, you can't be there yet.
    Misunderstanding and made up theories are the driving force in effect here. Apple probably needs to come out with an easy-to-read, easy-to-understand, explanation of what their software is and is not doing. Reading comprehension is not a forte of the common man these days. Add to that the so-called experts muddying up things by trying to parse and read between the lines as to Apple’s motives and solutions and we have chaos. With chaos comes wild theories, innuendo, false narratives, confusion, and the blatantly incorrect statement of @78Bandit and @seanismorris. Complete , made up fantasies.
    edited January 2
  • Reply 19 of 53
    78Bandit78Bandit Posts: 167member

    78Bandit said:
    macxpress said:
    I see people are already thinking that maybe come November/December they'll schedule a swap of their iPhone X battery. I wonder how many will actually do this?
    I'm also hoping Apple speced a better battery in the iPhone 8 and X as well as worked on their chipset power draw requirements in designing the A11 Bionic.  No way Apple engineers think it is acceptable to throttle a phone that is just over a year old; that was a stopgap measure to cover for a design flaw in the 6, 6S, and 7.
    Youre misunderstanding, they aren't throttling peak power draws on the 7 now, they're just added it to the list of models that can potentially throttle peak power draw when the battery eventually becomes used up. Unless you're performing like double or triple full charging cycles a day on your 7, you can't be there yet.
    Head over to Geekbench and take a look at the posted data.  With the introduction of iOS 11.2 iPhone 7 models are actually being throttled.
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 20 of 53
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 2,755member
    People still want to claim this wasn’t/isn’t PR issue for Apple?
    muthuk_vanalingam
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