Apple’s subsidized battery replacement scheme is underway for iPhones of the last few years. As the company disclosed that it had slowed down devices with older devices through software, one of the key devices affected in the policy was revealed to be the iPhone 6 Plus.
It also now turns out, according to internal documents given to and independently verified by MacRumors, that some owners of the iPhone 6 Plus that qualify for replacement of the entire device may instead get an iPhone 6s Plus. The document as described was vague, but it did state that eligibility would run through March.
Analysts predicted not only that owners of older iPhones would have greater motivation to pay $29 for a replacement and defer an upgrade costing hundreds of dollars, but that repair inventory would come down heavily for the iPhone 6 device generation — even over three years, there’s a healthy contingent of active owners and it doesn’t help that refreshed versions of the iPhone 6 have popped up here and there last year.
That said, the iPhone 6 Plus is still far from a mass-production item. In fact, Apple had announced to retail staff and servicers that it no longer was manufacturing the iPhone 6 Plus. Add to reported supply issues with replacement batteries for the device that would put replacements back by 8 weeks at the earliest and it’s got the company in a squeeze.
MacRumors‘s source claims that Apple and authorized servicers will handle battery, display, rear camera, speakers or Taptic Engine replacements while defects with the Lightning connector or the logic board can warrant a whole-device replacement. It will depend on the discretion of the employees handling each diagnostic. But as some customers are being told that a replacement battery might not be available for weeks, it could be speculated that select complainants may get a replacement upgrade device altogether.