No Warranty? No Problem: Apple Offers iPhone 5 Button Repair

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Iphone 5

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has launched a free parts replacement program for owners of certain iPhone 5 models that may have a faulty sleep/wake button mechanism. As noted by Apple, some iPhone 5 models have sleep/wake buttons that “stop working or work intermittently.” Apple has established a website to manage the replacement program where iPhone 5 owners can enter the serial number of their device to see if it qualifies for a button repair. According to Apple, only a small percentage of iPhone 5 models manufactured through March of 2013 are affected by this issue. The program covers eligible iPhone 5 models for up to two years after the first retail sale.

Although the program currently only covers iPhone 5 owners in the U.S. and Canada, Apple stated that the program would roll out worldwide beginning on May 2, 2014. Eligible iPhone 5 owners can either bring their devices to an Apple Store or Apple Authorized Service Provider, or they can mail their device to an Apple Repair Center. Apple recommends backing up all of your iPhone data to iTunes or iCloud before getting the button replacement. Apple also noted that any devices running iOS 6 will be upgraded to iOS 7, the latest iPhone operating system. The button replacement process is estimated to take four to six days. Owners of affected devices that have already replaced their sleep/wake button can also apply for a refund from Apple through the newly established website.

It should be noted that Apple rarely conducts large-scale recalls of its devices. According to the latest U.S. wireless smartphone customer satisfaction study from J.D. Power and Associates, Apple took the top ranking at all four of the major U.S. carriers. However, the Cupertino-based company has faced complaints about similar button issues in the past.

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