Last year, Apple decided to fix iPhones that would shut down unexpectedly by issuing a software update that would throttle the phone’s speed. The fix remained unnoticed until late 2017 when a Redditor observed that replacing his iPhone battery restored performance to expected levels, at least when it comes to synthetic benchmark tests.
That discovery quickly snowballed into a major crisis that Apple has nobody to blame for but itself. Since then, Apple has apologized and promised cheaper battery replacements to anyone affected by slowdown issues. Later, we found out that even iPhones who pass Apple’s internal tests qualify for $29 battery replacements instead of the usual $79 fee. But don’t even think about abusing it.
Apple will let you swap the iPhone battery even if it’s in good standing and your phone isn’t in any danger of being slowed down, as long as you’re willing to pay the $29 fee. But it won’t let you do it over and over.
Your iPhone must fail Apple’s battery tests to qualify for additional $29 battery replacements. That’s an unlikely scenario, but if you do end up with a new battery that proves to be faulty, and triggers slowdowns, you’ll still be able to take advantage of the program, which runs through December 31st, 2018.
So if you thought that paying $58 for two battery replacements this year is still cheaper than the usual $79 fee, you should abandon such hopes. Even if you replace your iPhone battery right now, you should rest assured that a new battery won’t age in a year to the point where the phone will start to get noticeably slower.
That said, the number of class action suits against Apple is getting closer to 30, and, unless Apple somehow prevails in every single one, it’ll probably have to offer some sort of additional compensation to affected users down the road.