Two weeks ago I went to an Apple store and they put a new battery in my iPhone 6S. The next day, I realized how unusable my previous battery had been doing my phone.
The repair restored the functionality that had leaked so slowly that it had not really recorded the loss. Applications are now loaded when I touch them, not when they feel like it. The keyboard does not freeze when I try to answer emails in Outlook. My phone no longer sticks to its charging cable as if it were a drip from the hospital, and the battery itself has stopped being surprised with a 40% drop to zero when I have the temerity to go out into the cold. (Yes, cold weather kills batteries). The trust is in my relationship with my phone, but as a result I trust much less in Apple.
I only heard about battery replacements when customers got annoyed with Apple
The only reason I got the replacement was because of the debacle last December, when a developer discovered that iOS updates were slowing down old iPhones. It seemed to confirm the persistent rumor that Apple is accelerating obsolete devices to force users to upgrade. The company's PR department, stung by bad press, said Apple had been slowing down the devices, but only to save them from their own spent batteries.
Apple explained that component wear meant it had to choose between giving old iPhones lower performance and more stability (by stopping unexpected stops caused by degraded batteries), or the same performance and less stability. He opted for the first, but without telling the clients what he was doing. Indicate Apple's outrage and apologies: battery replacements at discounted price and a software update that allows users to choose between performance and stability.
It's a good way to apologize, yes, but it also shows how badly Apple has been treating its customers and how it can do better.
Before buying my new battery, I was planning to update my iPhone this year. Now I'll wait until at least 2019. The $ 30 replacement fee saved me hundreds of dollars and stopped the environmental waste, so why did not Apple tell me before? I paid for AppleCare, which is supposed to help preserve my phone, but the option to replace your battery was never mentioned to me before December, and definitely not when I went to update old iPhones in the past.
If you are reading this and thinking & Idiot, why would they tell you? & # 39; … well, you're right I know that companies are not my friends and that no major smartphone manufacturer makes repairs that save performance part of their sales pitch. Most of the industry works with narrow margins and a high volume of sales, so they need to update. The omission of Apple is not a surprise.
How can a company that legislates against the right of repair claim that it is environmentally friendly?
But that does not mean it's not bad, especially for a company that makes big profits with every phone it sells; who promotes their green credentials every time they can (Apple's most recent ads claim that the iPhone has "zero waste"); and that prides itself on customer satisfaction. As the company said in its apology note: "We always wanted our customers to be able to use their iPhones as long as possible." So why not make the repairs easier?
Again, you can laugh at me for being naive. But what do you have to lose if you are at least angry about this and demanding a change? Do you really think that Apple deserves more of your money?
Apple's response to customer annoyance has been praiseworthy for the industry, but it also shows that they could be encouraged to do more. Smart phone technology has stabilized, and the tendency is for us to hold on to our phones for longer. This means that repairs and replacements are going to be more and more valuable. Apple should be more forthright in telling customers what they can do to keep their current phone alive, instead of just pressing them to update them. This is a company that claims that it always has the best interests for its users, why not try it? Users are allowed to turn off acceleration on older phones and introduced battery service warnings, but December's outrage shows that this is not enough, and the company's battles against the "right to repair" movement are opposite to useful.
The changes in the way Apple announces battery replacements would encourage us to think about our smartphones differently. Not as disposable items (an approach that is causing great environmental damage) but as something closer to a car; a useful object that can and should be maintained. When it announced its battery replacement scheme last December, Apple said it wanted to "regain the trust of anyone who has doubted Apple's intentions." I think there is more you can do.