Apple's $29 iPhone Battery Replacement Program Opens Early Amid ThrottleGate Debacle
The new pricing is already in effect at most of Apple Store locations across the United States, with a company spokesperson stating, “We expected to need more time to be ready, but we are happy to offer our customers the lower pricing right away. Initial supplies of some replacement batteries may be limited.”
Given Apple's wording, it may be a while before it has sufficient quantities of batteries to meet demand for customers bringing in their old iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s devices to reclaim lost performance, which was brought on by Apple's iOS software "features". And we should also keep in mind that Apple's generous price cut on its battery replacements is only good through the rest of 2018.
In response, iFixit, the popular DIY site and source for replacement iPhone components and tools, has also reduced the prices of its battery replacement kits. Prices now range from $17 for the ancient iPhone 4s to $29 for the iPhone 7. Most of the battery kits for iPhones between those two bookends come in at $25.
It should be noted that most people, however, will go with the Apple's services over iFixit. After all, your battery replacement will be handled in-store by a certified Apple technician, and should result in you receiving a device that is wholly intact, complete with waterproofing (i.e. iPhone 6s and iPhone 7). Going the iFixit route means that you will be performing the repair yourself, and if you're uncomfortable with such repairs on a smartphone, it could lead to some unforeseen mishaps. And cracking open a device like an iPhone 7 while maintaining the integrity of the waterproof seals is an operation that should not be taken lightly.
However, for those that don't have an Apple Store close by, it may be the quickest option to restore any lost performance as your iPhone ages.
Apple apologized for throttling the performance of iPhones with the iOS 10.2.1 and iOS 11.2 updates, and not properly informing customers of the practice. However, the company does not have any plans to stop the practice, since throttling performance is apparently the only way to prevent unexpected shutdowns on iPhones that have experienced severe battery wear.
Apple will also issue an iOS 11 update early this year that will "give users more visibility into the health of their iPhone’s battery, so they can see for themselves if its condition is affecting performance."
"We have never — and would never — do anything to intentionally shorten the life of any Apple product, or degrade the user experience to drive customer upgrades," said Apple in an open letter apology to customers last week. "Our goal has always been to create products that our customers love, and making iPhones last as long as possible is an important part of that.
"At Apple, our customers’ trust means everything to us. We will never stop working to earn and maintain it. We are able to do the work we love only because of your faith and support — and we will never forget that or take it for granted."