My Wife’s Experience Getting The Battery In Her iPhone 6 Replaced By Apple

When the news of what I now call “Batterygate” broke, my wife couldn’t care less. But seeing as her iPhone 6 is three years old, I encouraged her to get the battery replaced. So she grudgingly made an appointment with an Apple Genius at the Apple Store that was closest to us. But things got real for her last week in terms of this battery replacement:

  1. Her battery life really became an issue as she started to complain that she could not get the phone to last a business day without having to recharge it.
  2. In the extremely cold weather that we’ve had lately, the phone would randomly shut off.

I decided to investigate this further. Thus I used an application called Coconut Battery to see what her battery looked like. Here was the result:

Screen Shot 2018-01-03 at 8.06.13 PM.png

Now the first thing to focus on is the “Design Capacity” which in this case is 1810 mAh. However, it was only at 85.3% of that number. Meaning that it holds 85.3% of the charge that it is designed to. That’s not good, but not critical. The second number to focus on is the “Cycle Count” which is how many times it has been recharged. Apple says iPhone batteries are designed to retain up to 80 percent of their original capacity at 500 complete charge cycles. So that means that based on the cycle count alone that this battery was due for replacement.

Fast forward to this past Saturday. My wife and I arrived at 11:15 AM for her genius bar appointment. What was interesting is that the person who’s job it was to check us in did everything possible not to check us in before 11:30 AM. That we found weird, so she insisted on being checked in and the person who’s job it was to to check us in showed us to a seat, but not before asking again if she wanted to come back. She said no and he finally left. We both continued to find that weird.

Two minutes later the Apple Genius introduced himself. Then after getting an explanation of the problem he looked at the phone and said that she ran too many apps in the background and that was causing her battery to die early. The problem with that is that he was either unaware that this is inaccurate as per senior management at Apple or he was lying.

I’m going to go with lying for reasons that will become clear in a minute.

He then claimed the reason that her phone was randomly shutting down was due to the extreme cold and that all phones do that. That’s when she did two things. One she pointed out that she and I went skating in this cold and her phone shut down and mine didn’t. Second, she showed the results of the Coconut Battery test. His response was that Coconut Battery isn’t a “legitimate test”. He then claimed that the battery had 90% life left using Apple’s diagnostics software. Here’s the problem with those statements. Those numbers are pulled by Coconut Battery directly from the iPhone itself. So while I respect the fact that Apple has its own diagnostics that they rely on, Coconut Battery works the same way. Thus I have to wonder if the Apple diagnostics are “padded” in some way to make batteries look healthier than they really were.

After my wife pushed back on that, the Genius then figured that the gig was up and said “You’re free to have the battery replaced at a cost of $35 plus tax as it is your right. It will take four hours to do and it likely won’t solve all your problems.” He said it in a way that came across as sounding like this was his last shot of talking us out of getting the battery swapped. After she said yes, that’s when he went about doing what he needed to do to get that done.

Here’s where things got interesting, My wife and witnessed a female Apple Genius use exactly the same phrases and the same arguments to dissuade another person from getting a battery replacement for his iPhone 6. My wife and I looked at each other in amazement because we both came to the same conclusion that it looks like Apple has sent orders from on high to their staff to dissuade customers from getting battery replacements. That’s pretty crafty because if Apple manages to pull that off enough times, they’ll save a few bucks. Plus it pretty much proves that the Apple Genius we spoke to was lying.

Not cool Apple. Not cool.

Back to my wife. She signed off the paperwork and then went through withdrawal for four hours until she got the phone back. Here’s what’s interesting. It now lasts an entire business day and when we spent several hours cross country skiing on this past Sunday in minus 10 Celsius weather (minus 18 with windchill), it never shut down. Not once. Plus my wife felt that the phone was faster. Thus the battery swap at least thus far has worked.

So, our advice to you is that if you have an iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 6S, or 6S Plus, I would test it with Coconut Battery and see if you need a replacement. If you are close to or over the numbers that Apple themselves put out, replace the battery. If it’s over two years old, you might want to consider replacing the battery regardless. And don’t take no for an answer as it seems that Apple at least based on a sample size of two is actively trying to dissuade people from getting battery replacements. Which is unfortunate as it really makes that apology that they made kind of meaningless if this sort of behavior is going on in Apple Stores everywhere.

UPDATE: My wife pointed out the most important thing to do which is to make a Genius Bar appointment and do not simply walk into the Apple Store expecting to get face time with an Apple Genius. There are insanely long lines to see an Apple Genius because of “batterygate”. Thus making an appointment is your best bet.

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2 Responses to “My Wife’s Experience Getting The Battery In Her iPhone 6 Replaced By Apple”

  1. […] wife quickly got the battery in her iPhone 6 replaced. It was a bit of an adventure as I documented here. But the battery swap paid dividends as it basically gave her a brand new phone. But I came across […]

  2. […] That’s shady. Apple denies that it’s doing this. But I for one question that given my wife’s experience when she got the battery in her iPhone 6 replaced earlier this year. You’ll recall that they actively tried to dissuade her from doing so. And then we watched […]

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