Apple on Thursday posted an apology letter to its website regarding its slowing down of older iPhones. In addition to the apology, the company says that it wants to clarify what it’s really been doing to older handsets and it even makes a peace offering for disgruntled customers: $29 out-of-warranty battery replacements for the next year.

We’ve been hearing feedback from our customers about the way we handle performance for iPhones with older batteries and how we have communicated that process. 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 letter goes on to explain how batteries age, how that’s related to unexpected iPhone shutdowns, and what Apple has been doing about it. It plans on releasing an iOS software update with new features that give users more visibility into the health of their iPhone’s battery and how it’s affecting the device’s speed and performance.

We’ve always wanted our customers to be able to use their iPhones as long as possible. We’re proud that Apple products are known for their durability, and for holding their value longer than our competitors’ devices.

[…] At Apple, our customers’ trust means everything to us. We will never stop working to earn and maintain it. We are able to do the work we love only because of your faith and support — and we will never forget that or take it for granted.

The iOS update is planned for January, and the reduced cost battery replacement plan also begins late next month.

Source: Apple

  • Edmond Taroian

    do i have to have the latest apple software? I’m currently JB on 10.2 I can Run Cydia Remover and keep iOS 10.2 and take it for battery replacement?

    • It’s possible the software won’t be affected. However, if for any instance they need to reset your phone, they’ll install the latest iOS. It’s a hit or miss.

    • cdlenfert

      They didn’t implement this “battery saver” feature until 10.2.1, so I’m not sure if you could be included in the replacement discount program if you’re not experiencing unexpected crashes. I could also seeing Apple insist that everyone who get’s a replacement be on the new OS that rolls out in January which will provide some clarification for end users if their performance is being reduced on account of battery health.

  • Sai

    what about the iPhone 5S?

    • The iPhone 5S was not affected by the update, or the throttling. So, Apple will not offer a discounted battery replacement.

      The discount is most likely offered since the update masked the degrading of the battery. With the 5S, if you have issues thy should be aggravated and you most likely will notice and actively swap the batteries.

      • Sai

        But say I was getting effected by the update, would I still be able to try to get the battery swap? I mean it is the lowest end of the devices so i mean its pretty commnon. Honestly even if they do I honestly doubt I would be able to get the battery switch.

      • An iPhone 5S was not affected by the update. iOS does not and have not throttled iPhone prior to the 6 – to record. Hence, Apple will not provide support on this basis.

      • Harry

        My 5s has been affected since IOS 10. Sudden drop from 55% to dead without warning. Has nothing to do with throttling. The IOS handles older phones in a most abrupt and unreliable fashion.

        Used coconutbattery free app and saw my capacity is 73.1% of battery’s full original 1560 mAh. No battery warning message in 10.3.3

        Battery replacement for $29 for all models, a change in the IOS to better reflect charge and time left, and an acknowledgement from Apple would be great.

  • Ángel Javier Esquivel

    Will the offer be international?…

    • Yes! Starting late January 2018 and available worldwide thru December 2018.

  • justmewhoelse12

    And for us that upgraded from the 6 and 6S to 7 & 7 Plus because we couldn’t take the slowness?

    • cdlenfert

      If you upgraded every year, it’s pretty unlikely that your battery degraded to the point of needing replacement. In my experience over several iPhones, that doesn’t start to happen until year 2 of using the device. I think it’s more likely in cases like this, the new (buggier) OS, and bloat from software are to blame for the slower performance of older devices. If you take a year old iPhone and install a completely clean OS, it will be very fast.

  • besrate hogsa

    Does this apply for iPhone 6 plus?

  • memet

    29? its still too much for just less then 100 dollar battery. i have iphone 6 and iam having that problem . im in love with apple products but ithink if it stay that way apple will lose many customers not just me

    • besrate hogsa

      $29 dollars is a good deal
      they are changing it themselves while you wait for it

      • memet

        i dont think so besrate, as i said before iam a huge fan of apple iam using a mac , airpods,ipad, iphone,apple watch, even ipod but slowing iphones ? thats not acceptable. apple was doing this from long time . i have this problem since iphone 4 and after beanchmark approved it apples now making apology for it

      • besrate hogsa

        well, IMO I still think it is a good price

    • felixtaf

      29$ for a genuine battery replacement is a best deal IMO. Far better than the 79$ they usually charge!

  • CAIO MARIOZ

    Yesterday I have replaced my iPhone 6 battery for slow performance and poor battery life

    For 89€ = 105$

    And the week before I switched to iPhone X, because I believed that iPhone 6 slowdowns were a device issue, not a battery issue…

    Thanks Apple ???

    • M_Hawke

      You should go back and get the difference refunded to you for your battery.

    • Darren

      damn man. 🙁 replaced the battery myself on my 6 for $10.45 thru eBay included the tools and adhesive. I almost had Apple replace mine and it woulda cost $75. Glad I didn’t.

    • Rowan09

      With Apple they give refund or something when these things happen. I remember buying the new iPad they released one right before it and people were mad so I believe they took back the old ones as long as it was a month before the new iPad.

  • M_Hawke

    Stuff like this makes me wonder if Cook’s 11 million is worth it. AirPods were a great idea and well-executed. HOWEVER, not educating their customers about this battery issue, suddenly taking out the App store from iTunes, getting rid of the headphone jack (what a royal pain that has been), the various questionable design aspects of the iPhone X (glass back, the Notch, etc.), head-scratching “features” of iOS 11 (turning off WiFi & Bluetooth doesn’t really turn it off and you have to drill down deep to really turn it off, parents can’t approve kids’ purchases through Face ID), and various seemingly more frequent bugs in iOS makes me long for the pre-Cook era. I’m sure others could add to this list.

    Oh, here’s one: The “innovative” design of the Chicago Apple Store looking like a Mac Pro lid did not take into consideration that it’s in Chicago, you know, where it snows? The snow and dangerous icicles have closed down areas in front of the store because a Mac lid has no gutters. Duh! (Read about it on Verge.) They just seem to do things now days that are not thought through. That’s not being innovative, that’s being careless and sloppy.

    • M_Hawke

      UPDATE
      Because of the stress from the snow, one of their $$$expensive$$$ windows is cracking. And this store has been a bird magnet, with a high number of birds being killed for flying into it. They had to lower the lights in the store to avoid this. Read all about it on the Chicago Curbed news website.

  • Love T

    Terrible PR stunt. Only an idiot would think a battery is the cause of the slowdowns.

    • techfreak23

      Well, it is in some cases with older batteries in iPhones 6 and 6s’s running iOS 10.2.1 or newer. That’s what this whole thing is about because Apple finally disclosed how they handled the random shut down issue from last year…

  • n0ahcruz3

    Only sorry when caught and offers $29 replacement good decision hahaha

    • cdlenfert

      My thought exactly.

  • Jamessmooth

    I understand people being upset, but not so angry that they sue over this.

  • felixtaf

    I have a 6 plus bought from US. Can I replace the battery in an apple store in another country after January?

    • malhal

      yes but on the off chance they need to replace the phone you need to wait on the US model to be ordered in which takes a few days.

  • Patrick Richardson

    What a typical generic apology for a stupid operational decision.

  • Steve Harvey

    Apple was simply looking out for its users and trying to give them the best experience possible. While doing this they ignited a small group of whiners who now are causing a ruckus.

    Apple did a good thing here and tried to prevent random shutdowns, and improve overall battery health, and battery life through minimal changes.

    Apple should charge more for batteries now just to screw with these blunder heads.

    • h4nd0fg0d

      Nice. I can hear Steve Harvey’s fake ass laugh rite now too.

    • M_Hawke

      Well, read the post by Caio Marioz down below and you tell him that he’s a “whiner.” It’s not that they are “whining” about how Apple tried to “look out for its users and give them the best experience” by slowing down their phones, it’s that they didn’t tell anyone that’s what was happening AND (as usual) Apple didn’t give the consumer a choice as to whether their phone would be slowed down or not. And so some users bought more expensive phones as a result.

      • Steve Harold

        if you’re still babying a 6 bout time to love on anyways.

      • M_Hawke

        Maybe, but that still should be the result of a consumer’s _informed_ choice.

  • AMB_07

    This whole thing doesn’t make feel at ease owning an iPhone. I am most likely going back to Android next year, Apple needs to get their crap together. I’m not paying a premium price just so they hold my phone’s performance back.

  • Musen

    So this is only the battery issue that we know now. How about the IOS updates that turning the devices unresponding bulks? Since 2008 that I started using Apple items, this has been a major issue. They should let us sign the older versions or make their software more robust if their only concern is jailbreak from the beginning.

  • MMA Rules

    Now I know how much it is the cost of an iPhone battery!

    • Obaydok

      the only problem is that you don’t know yet!
      because apple never does a thing from goodness of its heart unless it is profitable!

  • So are they still going to slow older phones down with new updates? Are they planning to update iOS 11 with faster speeds for older phones or are they planning to keep doing what they’re doing? What was the resolution?

    • Rowan09

      It’s only phones with degrading batteries not all old phones.

  • I think it’s a humble apology. I buy into it.

    About the $29 battery replacement, it must be noted that it will be “for anyone with an iPhone 6 or later *whose battery needs to be replaced*”

    That means you can’t show up in an Apple store and get the battery replaced for $29 just like that. They will likely run some tests on it and replace it if they conclude it needs to be replaced.

    • Shinonuke

      Not sure if I buy into it. Yeah it is great that they offer a battery replacement for cheap. However, they purposely throttled their iPhones to get people to upgrade. I remember upgrading from 4 to 4s because my iPhone slowed down. Don’t know how far back it went but this type of business practice is unethical.

      • techfreak23

        It can be argued that Apple kept quiet about the feature they implemented partly to drive sales, I’ll give you that, but their solution to the issue regarding the random shut downs isn’t BS. Had they been upfront about this from the beginning, this whole PR disaster for them would not be happening.
        Also, they started this last year with the iPhone 6 and 6s with iOS 10.2.1.

      • Rowan09

        How to come to this conclusion? Apple is slowing devices with batteries that aren’t as good anymore. The simple solution is changing your battery. It’s no different than me using a phone with a bad battery that dies quickly. Plus have you ever tried using an iPhone being slowed with an iPhone not being slowed to compare the 2? Until you’ve done these things isn’t it a little premature to come to your conclusion they are doing it for sales? I never knew one person that bought the new iPhone because the old one (a year old especially) was now just too slow.

      • s0me

        Just be honest man, tell all the people here how much Apple pays you.

        You ride Appple’s d since I follow idb

      • Rowan09

        Well I made money from fixing Apple devices more than any other put I don’t and never worked for Apple. I was also a shareholder at one point and made money there as well. As I said to some other guy, I guarantee I own more Android devices than you do. Just because I think this is overblown doesn’t mean Apple does everything right. I don’t know any experiencing these slow down issues. It’s always cool to bash Apple no matter how small the issue and since I’m not currently a shareholder it doesn’t matter much to me. Maybe you and your friends can keep with the bad news so I can buy back in low. I’m also a heterosexual married man and would never ride anyone’s anything.

      • Shinonuke

        I understand the idea of slowing down cpu power to drag out the life of the battery, but nowhere did they mentioned that they were doing that. People figured that it’ll be better to upgrade since their iPhones were no longer adequate for their usage. It is a ploy to increase sells and pushing new products. If I had known this, then I would have tried a $100 battery change instead of a $650 to buy a new iphone

      • Rowan09

        The issue is this doesn’t affect every phone and I have a 7 Plus which doesn’t have any slow down effect, my brother just got rid of his 6 Plus which is also fine. If people are expecting their 3 year old device to behave like a brand new iPhone that’s not going to happen unless you do a fresh install for the most part.

      • Shinonuke

        Yes, it should work without issues after a refresh. Battery life should have no baring on the performance of the cpu. I get it that battery’s life decline over time. But I preferred that Apple made it clear with something like “We will be on low battery capacity mode and cpu will decrease to increase usage time.” Then have option to choose “yes or no.” I am definitely comparing but I still prefer an Apple product at the moment

      • Rowan09

        I understand they could have handled this differently to avoid the nefarious accusations. Personally IOS devices last the longest with support, etc than any other devices, even the Mac as well.

    • Sebastián Junca 

      They should let iOS downgrades, at least for the oldest model. The slowdown starts when upgrading to a newer os, I have an iPad 3 stuck on iOS 9 and is painfully slow.

      • Umut Topuz

        Not sure but there was tweak that lets you use 2 os’s at the same time. You may use 6.1.3 with that method

      • Sebastián Junca 

        I’ll definitely check that out, hope blobs won’t be needed, thanks for the tip

      • DepthStriderV

        It’s called CoolBooter. It works on 32 bit devices. You can downgrade to as low as iOS 6 on supported devices. Doesn’t require blobs.

      • Sebastián Junca 

        Great!!! Thanks

    • danakin

      So Apple, who created the throttling software, will “run tests” with their gear and their staff to determine if the battery in our phones, which they built, will need to be replaced. Considering the lack of transparency they displayed; they only spoke up when they got caught, why should consumers have any faith in this?
      I’m sure you, and the other Apple sycophant on the podcast will find a way to genuflect at the Cupertino altar.

  • Alex Wilson

    I can respect their decision and appreciate the turn around. I feel like this has been done before. My old, still working, iPad 2 went through this type of BS after an update that dramatically slowed it down. hummmm

  • Marko

    Apple products? Never again!

  • sam

    I have iPhone X, macbook pro, Apple TV, Apple Watch, will start to sell them. this is wake up call for me

    • Rowan09

      How much? Where are you going?

  • h4nd0fg0d

    Sounds like a boat load of shit. ‘Faith and support,’ oh that’s fckn rich.

  • Neo Ajaka

    sorry, not a penny more to these jerks..

    • Rowan09

      Where is your money going?

  • Chris Angel

    I sold my iPhone 6 cause it got slow, had I known a battery replacement will work I’d have continued using it. Is Apple gonna buy me a new phone now? Stupid Apple. I am selling my last remaing Apple products and moving to android.

    • Rowan09

      I have a S7 Edge want to trade?

  • n0ahcruz3

    Now if only apple would stop notifying me with a new update that would be wonderful!

  • Nick Greenway

    Do they replace the battery in store that day or do they have to ship it off?

  • Blip dude

    So, does that mean my iPhone 8 Plus in 4 years will be eligible for a $29 replacement?? Oh am I gonna have to pay the $129 premium like I was almost forced to do on my 6S Plus??

    I get why Apple made this decision, but like others, I believe if Apple was upfront about the issue instead even possibly leaving their “Geniuses” in the dark about the solution of slowed iPhones, I don’t anyone would be making a big deal about.

    Looking forward to my $22.60 settlement check in 5 years.