Apple has clarified its policy on battery replacements. As long as the owner of the iPhone 6 (or later) handset is willing to pay the $29 fee, and the device is not otherwise damaged, Apple will process the repair without requiring further checks of condition.
This comes after some reported cases where Apple Store employees were refusing customers with ‘ineligible’ batteries which still passed Apple diagnostics testing.
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As reported by iGeneration, Apple has released new internal documentation to Apple Stores explaining that iPhones do not have to fail a diagnostics test in order for the out-of-warranty battery replacement to go ahead.
This means that all iPhone 6, iPhone 6s, iPhone SE, iPhone 7, iPhone 8 and iPhone X owners are indeed eligible for a $29 repair. The exact battery condition is not relevant to qualifying for a replacement, although normal terms still apply – Apple may not replace your battery if it finds other damage to the device or interfering third-party components.
If you are trying to get a free battery replacement through an AppleCare warranty claim, then the device diagnostics will still be a prerequisite. The current policy will flag a battery as needing repair if it retains less than 80% of its original charge capacity.
The discrepancy is that the performance throttling, which Apple uses to reduce unexpected shutdowns on devices with degraded batteries, can kick in before that 80% threshold.
Before the policy was clarified today, some Apple Store employees were not allowing people to fix their phones with throttled performance if the battery was reporting above 80% capacity and therefore passing the normal Apple Support diagnostics checks.
As it should have been from the beginning, the refined policy means that anyone can get a battery repair for their iPhone if they want one.
As announced in the company’s statement, the discounted battery replacements will be offered throughout 2018. A future iOS update will better inform users about the battery condition of their device. $29 battery replacements are available now through Apple’s retail and online support channels.
iGeneration reports that customers have gotten refunds if they previously purchased battery repairs at the higher $79 price. It is not clear if this is an official policy; Apple’s official statement did not address the topic of refunds or other concessions.