iPhones with third-party batteries can now get official repairs

Apple doesn't seem to have a favorable relationship with its iPhone batteries. After giving in to complaints about its battery-related throttling on older iPhones, the company partly blamed its weak financial figures on the significantly cheap battery replacement program it started in response to that. Many iPhone users, however, may have already resorted to third-party aftermarket battery replacements. And in a historic reversal, Apple is now telling Genius Bars and authorized service providers that it's now OK to repair those iPhones, too.

Apple's previous repair policy was straightforward and unyielding. If any part of the iPhone has been replaced with an unauthorized third-party component, the owner will be turned away when requesting official repairs and services. For one reason or another, Apple is now making an exception at least when the part that was replaced is the battery.

If the service request is unrelated to the battery, Genius Bars and official service providers are now being instructed to proceed as normal, even if they see that the battery has been replaced by a third-party one. If the problem is the battery itself, that can be replaced by an official one for the standard fee of a battery replacement. In other words, service providers are to turn a blind eye on whether the battery comes from a first-party or a third-party.

The internal Apple document detailing these instructions is supposedly just going round last Thursday and should apply worldwide. It is definitely a significant change of heart for a company that has previously been bullish on third-party repairs. Sadly, restrictions still stand with regards to other components and service providers are instructed to still decline those.