Apple

Apple’s BatteryGate Replacement Could Hurt iPhone Sales

Apple’s move to offer replacement batteries for older iPhones at a discount could impact sales of its new iPhone 8 and iPhone X.

According to a Reuters report, Barclays analyst Mark Moskowitz warned that the replacement battery deal could impact sales of the newer models, given that 77 percent of its customers use either an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6s Plus, 7, 7 Plus or SE. Even if a small number of older iPhone owners opt for the battery instead of an upgrade, it could potentially put a dent in sales. Apple already faces eight lawsuits over the battery issue with the older phones, noted Reuters.

In December, John Poole, founder of software company Primate Labs, found that iPhone 6s models running iOS versions 10.2 and 11.2, and iPhone 7 phones running iOS 11.2, were more likely to have instances of slower processing speed. Apple confirmed Poole’s findings, noting on Dec. 20 that the tech company was trying to “smooth out the instantaneous peaks only when needed to prevent the device from unexpectedly shutting down” when conditions were cold or as batteries aged.

The news caused a social media backlash, as customers expressed outrage that they had not been informed of the change or given the option to replace the battery. It has also resulted in a class-action suit against the Cupertino, California company.

As a result of the backlash, Apple issued an apology, saying: “We know that some of you feel Apple has let you down. We apologize. There’s been a lot of misunderstanding about this issue, so we would like to clarify and let you know about some changes we’re making. First and foremost, 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. 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.”

The company is slashing $50 off the out-of-warranty iPhone battery replacement for the next year. A new software update will also launch early next year, giving users more insight into battery life.

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