Apple to start in-store iPhone 5c, 5s screen and battery replacements

Apple to start in-store iPhone 5c, 5s screen and battery replacements

Summary: Apple may be ditching the refurbished answer to cracked screens for in-store replacements, according to a report.

TOPICS: Hardware, Apple, iPhone

Having a cracked iPhone screen may soon mean replacing the screen rather than have to pay out for a replacement device.

Today, if an iPhone owner finds their device suffering from a cracked screen, their local Apple retail store can only provide a refurbished replacement device. However, it looks like Apple may be taking a new tack for its latest generation of devices.

According to 9to5Mac's sources, Apple is gearing up to launch in-store repair and replacement services at its retail outlets that will enable staff to swap out cracked iPhone 5c and 5s screens.

So instead of having Apple staff help them backup, sync and set up their replacement handsets, customers could in future opt to wait around one hour for staff to replace their existing device's screen.

In-store screen replacements will cost $149 per device, according to the report, and staff will be also be able to replace a range of other hardware components, including volume buttons, vibrating motor, rear-camera, speakers and batteries. However, it seems unlikely that staff will be able to replace the iPhone 5s' sapphire crystal TouchID button.

ZDNet has asked Apple UK for confirmation of the initiative and whether it will be rolled out globally.

Customers with phones that are not under warranty will be charged $79 for a battery replacement — the same it costs now in the US for a service that is handled off-site — while a new home button on the 5c will cost $29. Non-US customers could expect to pay more, in line with the usual Apple pricing differences between countries.

If it comes to fruition, the in-store repair service would join Apple's new iPhone trade-in program, launched last month in Europe, which lets users hand over their old iPhones in return for a discount on newer models. 

Further reading

Topics: Hardware, Apple, iPhone

Liam Tung

About Liam Tung

Liam Tung is an Australian business technology journalist living a few too many Swedish miles north of Stockholm for his liking. He gained a bachelors degree in economics and arts (cultural studies) at Sydney's Macquarie University, but hacked (without Norse or malicious code for that matter) his way into a career as an enterprise tech, security and telecommunications journalist with ZDNet Australia. These days Liam is a full time freelance technology journalist who writes for several publications.

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  • How common is cracked screens?

    I've never owned an Iphone, but I seem to hear a lot about cracked screens. Is that a common occurrence? I've had smartphones for several years now, dropped many of them and never have had a cracked screen.
    • Re: Is that a common occurrence?


      I have yet to see an iPhone in use with cracked screen. Either their owners replace screens immediately (unlikely, as there is no Apple Store where I live) or it is rare occurrence. More likely the later.
      • I've seen the exact opposite

        Nearly every single iPhone I've seen has cracked glass. Most people I know have gone through at least a couple because of it and the vast majority of the ones my business deploy come back broken. We don't see it even remotely as much with other phones such as Galaxy Notes, HTCs and Windows Phones. I think it might be because the iPhone has the entire glass panel exposed. The iPhone 5 might be better though. Haven't really taken a particularly close look at the things.
        • Nearly every single one??

          "Nearly every single iPhone I've seen has cracked glass."

          So like 99% of all iPhones you've seen? (and it sounds like you've seen a lot)

          Either you hang with the worlds clumsiest group of people or its the worlds best kept secret that nearly single iPhone gets cracked glass...
          • I agree

            Seems a bit of a stretch that "nearly every" iphone has a cracked screen. I've seen a few and I know there's a fair few been sent for repair in our company but I wouldn't say it was anywhere near 50%.
            Little Old Man
          • Seconded...

            Of all the iPhones I have seen, having owned one myself, I can say I have only ever seen one broken screen. The guy who owned it was a clumsy oaf and did not have his replaced because he was sure he'd break it again. The point to understand here is that it's mostly related to the user of the phone than the phone itself. And to this point, I have only ever broken one smartphone screen. It was an Android and I was so angry with what a POS it was (locking up, white screen of death) that I repeatedly threw it onto my carpet until the screen was shattered. When I had my iPhone, I treated it like a newborn baby (I would still have it if the wife didn't take it in the divorce...). Now I have a GS4, who knows what will happen during it's tenure in my hands... but I bet the screen breaking has nothing to do with who made it...
  • Been doing it at least since 5s launch...

    Bit slow on the news here...

    Got my iphone 5 screen replaced for £120 in September in London and the guy told me they've been doing it for 6 months already in the US?

    He also said it was only the 4 and 4s that weren't serviceable as they were built from the front back, all others were back to front construction.

    This does fit as the 2g, 3G, and 3GS all could have screen replacements

    No idea why it took so long to start 5 screen replacements?
  • Here we go again

    Apple's quality control takes another beating. Between screen and battery issues and iOS7 issues, things don't look good.
    They'll probably replace the phones and the defective ones will probably get tossed in a landfill in some third world country.
    • Um...???

      Did you read the article before you added your comment, or just read the headline? You seem to be on a tangent unrelated to this article...