Earlier this week it was announced that Apple was replacing certain iPhone 5 models, sold between September 2012 and January 2013, due to a problem related to the devices’ battery life.
According to certain customers, however, things are not quite as straightforward as they may seem.
Some users, who fulfilled the criteria in terms of their iPhone 5 serial number, were still denied the free device replacement after Apple added additional tests. One iPhone user in Queensland, Australia said that she was told by an Apple Store employee that while the battery was “borderline” defective (it allegedly ran for only a couple of hours after charging) it was “not close enough” to warrant a free replacement. The customer was then asked for $99 in order for the Apple staffer to install a new battery.
“I’ve got friends on Facebook thinking they’ve got a ‘golden ticket’ with this Apple offer but that’s no longer clear,” the customer says.
Apple has yet to comment on the issue, but it’s worth noting that the company has previously run into problems related to its one-year warranty in Australia, which it has been forced to extend to two years in order to comply with Australian consumer law, stating that statutory warranties should stand for a “reasonable” period of time, even after the manufacturer’s standard warranty has expired.
For customers wanting to check whether their iPhone 5 might be one of the “very small percentage of iPhone 5 devices” affected by poor battery life they can check their serial number on Apple’s website to find out whether they, at least in theory, qualify for a free battery replacement. Serial numbers can be found by going to Settings > General > About > Serial Number on your iPhone.
The offer does not cover additional damage such as broken screens or cracked iPhone cases.