Office Depot, OfficeMax temporarily drop iPhone battery replacement cost to $28

Posted:
in iPhone
iPhone owners out of range of an Apple retail store can have their iPhone battery replaced at Office Depot or OfficeMax for just $27.99 until Feb. 4, with one important caveat.




The short-term $27.99 price at Office Depot and OfficeMax is reduced from the typical cost of $49.99, likely as a response to Apple's own price drop which runs throughout 2018.

While the office supply stores do promise same-day turnaround for battery replacement, they are not Apple Authorized Service Providers. That means new batteries are not Apple-supplied replacement parts and could void the iPhone's warranty - though Office Depot and OfficeMax do offer a one-year guarantee of their own.

They are also not the first third parties to lower the cost of battery-related products and services in the wake of Apple's announcement. In December, iFixit dropped the price of its own do-it-yourself iPhone battery replacement kits, which now range from $16.99 for an iPhone 4S kit to $29 for an iPhone 7 version.

Those who do plan to take advantage of Office Depot and OfficeMax's offering can find a nearby store here.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 22
    jdwjdw Posts: 567member
    "Temporarily" apparently because Apple simply won't have enough batteries in stock until March, so Office Depot and OfficeMax are apparently trying to capitalize on that.  Thankfully, Apple has their replacement program running through the end of 2018, so I will probably get my iPhone 7's battery replaced along with my wife's iPhone 6S battery later in the year, especially because Apple will likely have more battery inventory by then as well.  I've not noticed a considerable slowdown on my iPhone 7, but by year end, who knows.  That's why I personally think holding off until the end of the year makes more sense for me.
    GeorgeBMacmwhiteMacsplosionwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 2 of 22
    JFC_PAJFC_PA Posts: 105member
    Nice to see giant corporations have a sense of humor. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 22
    Obviously these other companies are still making money on this, otherwise they wouldn’t do it.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 22
    jdw said:
    "Temporarily" apparently because Apple simply won't have enough batteries in stock until March, so Office Depot and OfficeMax are apparently trying to capitalize on that.  Thankfully, Apple has their replacement program running through the end of 2018, so I will probably get my iPhone 7's battery replaced along with my wife's iPhone 6S battery later in the year, especially because Apple will likely have more battery inventory by then as well.  I've not noticed a considerable slowdown on my iPhone 7, but by year end, who knows.  That's why I personally think holding off until the end of the year makes more sense for me.
    First do a restore from backup.

    zroger73
  • Reply 5 of 22
    It is only for 6 and later models and the SE is not included in for the $29 battery replacement drop!  Really sucks!
  • Reply 6 of 22
    jdwjdw Posts: 567member
    First do a restore from backup.
    Please remind me about that at the end of this year, because like I said, I won't be doing a battery replacement until then.  :smile: To get that low $29 and maximize its merits, waiting until later in the year makes most sense to me.
    zroger73watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 22
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 3,179member
    Obviously these other companies are still making money on this, otherwise they wouldn’t do it.
    As I said before, the markup on these batteries is incredible. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 22
    It appears you can purchase new batteries for as little as $6 online, so they obviously cost less than that to manufacture. I'm sure genuine Apple OE batteries are built using better materials and have higher quality standards, so lets be extremely liberal and assume that Apple pays less than $12 for each battery. How long does it take someone to replace a battery who does this multiples times per day - 30 minutes tops including smoke/bathroom/coffee breaks? How much does this person make - $15 per hour tops? I'd guess the real cost for battery replacement is somewhere around $15-20 dollars.

    Now, how many people are going to walk into an Apple store or Office Depot or OfficeMax and buy ONLY a replacement battery? Most, probably, But, there will be a few here and there that are either sold on or impulsively pick up a high-profit accessory or maybe even a new phone or computer or other big-ticket item. Humans tend to wander around the store while dropping off their phones, picking them up, or waiting for their batteries to be replaced. When they wander, they tend to make additional purchases.
    watto_cobraairnerd
  • Reply 9 of 22
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 5,653member
    Trying to take advantage of the hysterical panic.
    andrewj5790watto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 10 of 22
    SoliSoli Posts: 6,199member
    Obviously these other companies are still making money on this, otherwise they wouldn’t do it.
    Not necessarily. Loss leaders to get people into a store aren't uncommon. At the very least, they aren't making significant profit from these replacements. Even if for $28 revenue for, say, 1 hour of labor plus the battery dies result in even 1¢ of profit, its purpose would be more about bring people into the store over trying to bank on battery replacements.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 22
    It may not be your problem, but we’ll be happy to take your money to fix a problem you don’t have. Haaaaaapppyyyyy to!!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 22
    I hate this story. The public ignorance on this is terrible, and the “media” does nothing to help because of click driven business models. I had to wait days to get a genuine problem with my iPhone fixed because of all the people getting batteries they don’t need. It’s ridiculous. I saw many, many elderly folks in there as well, only doing it because they saw it on TV, and they get upset when they get told their battery is fine. I don’t blame them, I blame the fear-mongering, anxiety-inducing media. And Apple for not being more clear in the beginning. The whole thing is so stupid. 
    hammeroftruthwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 22
    Obviously these other companies are still making money on this, otherwise they wouldn’t do it.
    That's not how business works.  They can be using this as a break even or loss leader to get people in the stores. Just like many items in their weekly ads. This also serves as great advertisement of their tech services that most people likely had no idea they even offered. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 22

    zroger73 said:
    It appears you can purchase new batteries for as little as $6 online, so they obviously cost less than that to manufacture. I'm sure genuine Apple OE batteries are built using better materials and have higher quality standards, so lets be extremely liberal and assume that Apple pays less than $12 for each battery. How long does it take someone to replace a battery who does this multiples times per day - 30 minutes tops including smoke/bathroom/coffee breaks? How much does this person make - $15 per hour tops? I'd guess the real cost for battery replacement is somewhere around $15-20 dollars.

    Now, how many people are going to walk into an Apple store or Office Depot or OfficeMax and buy ONLY a replacement battery? Most, probably, But, there will be a few here and there that are either sold on or impulsively pick up a high-profit accessory or maybe even a new phone or computer or other big-ticket item. Humans tend to wander around the store while dropping off their phones, picking them up, or waiting for their batteries to be replaced. When they wander, they tend to make additional purchases.
    Guess again.  The hourly labor cost and the price they pay per battery is only part of the cost. There is the advertising cost, including the ad design and actual advertising rates,  the hourly cost they pay for that employees social security, unemployment insurance, other benefits, the training cost, the salary, etc., of the people who have to order, inventory, stock, etc., the batteries.  The warranty costs that will include not only replacing some percentage of the batteries, but dealing with followup issues and questions when people experience problems that may or may not be related to the replacement battery, but Office Max must nonetheless investigate and respond to. The processing cost of the transaction, and of course, the huge admin and overhead cost of running a large brick and mortar operation.



    edited January 13 watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 22
    Notsofast said:

    Guess again.  The hourly labor cost and the price they pay per battery is only part of the cost. There is the advertising cost, including the ad design and actual advertising rates,  the hourly cost they pay for that employees social security, unemployment insurance, other benefits, the training cost, the salary, etc., of the people who have to order, inventory, stock, etc., the batteries.  The warranty costs that will include not only replacing some percentage of the batteries, but dealing with followup issues and questions when people experience problems that may or may not be related to the replacement battery, but Office Max must nonetheless investigate and respond to. The processing cost of the transaction, and of course, the huge admin and overhead cost of running a large brick and mortar operation.



    And the actual labor cost is closer to double to the corporation. 
  • Reply 16 of 22
    jcs2305jcs2305 Posts: 253member
    jdw said:
    First do a restore from backup.
    Please remind me about that at the end of this year, because like I said, I won't be doing a battery replacement until then.  :smile: To get that low $29 and maximize its merits, waiting until later in the year makes most sense to me.
    The restore to help with the considerable slowdown that you describe. Your year old iPhone 7 shouldn't have a battery so depleted that the it's being throttled. You would be surprised what a restore will do. Personally I wouldn't restore from back up.. Back up your phone to icloud prior to the restore. Then once the restore is complete set up as new iPhone and sign back into iCloud. Reinstall your apps and see how your phone runs after that. Folks are now just assuming that if there phone is running less than optimal it MUST be the battery and IOS throttling. That definitely isn't always the case.. Its worth a try..  

    I would still take advantage of the battery at this price later in the year if you plan on keeping your phone if I were you , but in the meantime it makes no sense to have a phone that you believe has slowed down considerably and do nothing about it until later in the year?  Just my opinion of course....
    Solihammeroftruthwatto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 22
    i strongly suggest that anyone considering going to a place like OfficeMax or buying a battery off iFixit first go speak to someone who is actually a lawyer and practices in warranty law. Apple has a standing and long time policy that while they might ignore other 3rd party parts, a 3rd party battery is grounds for zero service. No repairs, no swaps, not free, not paid. here's your stuff, go away. And iFixit saying that that is illegal under their read of what they believe is the relevant laws doesn't mean it truth. You might think you are doing a cool thing sticking it to Apple and going to these non authorized service options but you might just be screwing yourself if something goes wrong and Apple can legally tell you to piss off. So make sure you have your ducks in a row before you take that chance. Especially if you have a phone that doesn't have a worn out battery in the first place and any 'slow down' is due to something else. 
    hammeroftruthwatto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 22
    Rayz2016 said:
    Obviously these other companies are still making money on this, otherwise they wouldn’t do it.
    As I said before, the markup on these batteries is incredible. 
    The markup on almost everything in tech. is high - and certainly not just in the case of Apple! Look at other industries: Take for example that $7.50 to manufacture shirt you bought at Nordstroms for $175.00.
  • Reply 19 of 22
    Don’t we love competition?!  Took in an iPhone 6 and 6 plus that were at 36% and 64% capacity per coconut battery app.   Apple store had me make an appointment and go through a whole check out process just to tell me that they had no battries in stock but would get some in 2 Days.  Ha!  More like 2 months from what I read afterward. I waited a week but the online status had no update.    So, I tried OfficeDepot which had the batteries in stock and  them in stock and swapped in a couple of hours.  There is a 1 year warranty on any battery issues.  These are hand me down phones out-of-warranty phone and I was going to replace them because they couldn’t hold a charge.  I never noticed any performance problems.  But, glad to see the price reductions so I could have the phone last longer.  

    So, trying to be considerate, I tried to contact Apple and cancel my work orders so someone else can get the batteries they had ordered for me.    Online tech support could not cancel the order because it was a sales issue and so they setup a sales support phone call the next day.  Next day, the support analyst couldn’t cancel the order because their super secret direct line to the store had no answer because the store closed.   Apparently only the store can cancel the order but you don’t ever get to call the store directly yourself.  They asked me to call support back later.   Unbelievable.  Thought I was talking to the cable company.  They couldn’t just take care of it later themselves even though it was in their own best interest.   I might just give up as they release the batteries after 5 days anyway.   Ugh. 
  • Reply 20 of 22
    airnerdairnerd Posts: 396member
    zroger73 said:
    It appears you can purchase new batteries for as little as $6 online, so they obviously cost less than that to manufacture. I'm sure genuine Apple OE batteries are built using better materials and have higher quality standards, so lets be extremely liberal and assume that Apple pays less than $12 for each battery. How long does it take someone to replace a battery who does this multiples times per day - 30 minutes tops including smoke/bathroom/coffee breaks? How much does this person make - $15 per hour tops? I'd guess the real cost for battery replacement is somewhere around $15-20 dollars.

    Now, how many people are going to walk into an Apple store or Office Depot or OfficeMax and buy ONLY a replacement battery? Most, probably, But, there will be a few here and there that are either sold on or impulsively pick up a high-profit accessory or maybe even a new phone or computer or other big-ticket item. Humans tend to wander around the store while dropping off their phones, picking them up, or waiting for their batteries to be replaced. When they wander, they tend to make additional purchases.
    I have only replaced a battery and a screen on my 6, and doing both took me less than 30 minutes trained by nothing more than a youtube video.
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