Apple Formally Acknowledges the iPhone 6 Plus 'Touch Disease' Issue and Offers Customers with this Problem Some Relief
Patently Apple began covering a string of class action lawsuits filed against Apple regarding the issue of "Touch Disease" back in late August. Another two reports (one and two) were posted in October covering new legal proceedings. For those not familiar with the "Touch Disease" issue we're presenting you with the original video from iFixit below. The company iPad Rehab brought the problem to light led by Jessa Jones who explains the problem in-depth.
Until now Apple refused to address the issue publicly. Apple has published a new web page titled "Multi-Touch Repair Program for iPhone 6 Plus." The new page notes that "Apple has determined that some iPhone 6 Plus devices may exhibit display flickering or Multi-Touch issues after being dropped multiple times on a hard surface and then incurring further stress on the device.
If your iPhone 6 Plus is exhibiting the symptoms noted above, is in working order, and the screen is not cracked or broken, Apple will repair your device for a service price of $149.
Apple will contact customers who may have paid for a service repair related to this issue either through Apple or an Apple Authorized Service Provider to arrange reimbursement. If you have not been contacted but paid for a repair that you believe was related to this issue, please contact Apple.
The reimbursement amount will equal the difference between the price you paid for the original service to your iPhone 6 Plus and the $149 service price."
Whether the law firms handling the class action lawsuits will find this solution adequate enough will be determined at a later date.
In the bigger picture, it was a little disturbing to hear iFixit specialist Jessa Jones explain how Apple banned her from the Apple Support Community Forum three times for sharing information about this ongoing issue. Jones further revealed that her reports and feedback posted on this forum about this issue were also being systematically removed from Forums.
While I'm sure that some repair houses try to drum up business on the Apple Support Community Forum with false problems, it's equally clear that Jessa Jones is a straight shooter and those controlling the Forum should allow professionals with experience about iPhones problems to at least present their case to the community.
Lastly, Apple makes the claim that the problem is from "being dropped multiple times on a hard surface and then incurring further stress on the device." Jessa Jones laid out distinct changes that Apple made when designing the iPhone 6 Plus and the compromises seemed to play a role in this problem. The "bendgate" issue that Apple ignored also apparently played a role in creating the display problems in the iPhone 6 Plus and it's why Apple changed the grade of the aluminum in their next-gen iPhone 6s Plus. So while Apple is somewhat blaming customers from repeatedly dropping their iPhone 6 Plus on a hard surface, Jones makes a more believable case.
In the end this may have to still be fought out in court if Apple is going to stick to their theory of the problem so that they could charge customers for the repair rather than absorb full costs. If the problem is big enough, this is going to be a bigger headache for Apple. The fact that it had to go to such extremes to get Apple to almost except responsibility for this issue is something I'd expect from Samsung, not Apple.
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