As you may well be aware, there is a big fiasco thundering across the Internet at the moment. If you haven’t been keeping up with the recent tech trends, in short, Apple had a bit of rotten week since the launch of their iPhone 6. Firstly their iPhone 6 and 6 Plus were tarnished with being susceptible to ‘bending.’ Secondly 10 million devices hosting the new operating system iOS 8 were sold with a glitch in the software, which roused up 40,000+ complaints just within the United states alone.
As a result we have seen the birth and explosion of the #BendGate Twitter tag, across the social media platform. So, today I'd like to address some of the unfortunate iPhone 6 owners who have been rejected the opportunity to have their bent iPhone replaced by Apple. I will discuss the issue of the bent iPhone, the costs associated with fixing the phone and a potentially cheaper option to protect it, allowing you to continue using your new iPhone. Because nobody wants to whip out their spare Blackberry or Nokia 3310 as a replacement.
The situation at Apple started breaking down last week. Complaints began piling in about the glitch within the iPhone 6’s new iOS 8 operating system and the fact that, some of the handsets had actually bent in customers pockets. In response Apple have constructed an in-store test they call the “Visual Mechanical Inspection.” The device will have to pass this test if it is to be granted access back into the core of the fruit, to be replaced.
One customer asked over live chat if a “bent enclosure occurring during normal use will fit under the warranty?” To which the Apple representative responded. “That is 100% up to the genius that you speak with at the store.”
To my dismay, Apple are leaving it within the hands of individual employees to decide whether or not to replace your iPhone, regardless of whether it was your fault or not. Something the internet teased as being an extra feature to the iPhone 6, rather than an engineering oversight, which could cost you $124 AUD ($109USD) to replace. That is, if your "genius" is having a bad day, or doesn’t like you. It'll cost even more for 6 Plus owners at $147. Plus don’t forget to add $8 for shipping the replacement piece and to add Australian GST tax because these prices do not include that 10%.
So $124 + $8 + $12 = $144 for repairing a bent iPhone 6; and $147 + $8 + $14 = $169 to repair an iPhone 6 Plus.
If you do happen to be an unfortunate customer who has been refused a replacement under warranty or refuse to admit that being one of the first people to spend circa $1,000 on un-proven technology was a bad idea - then here is light at the end of the tunnel. A number of phones that bent, did not damage the screen meaning, you can still use your iPhone and protect it from further damage. All can be achieved without incurring the large financial cost above. The solution is a pre-bent iPhone 6 case purchased online for a fraction of the price.
Shapeways, an online tech store is selling the BendGate casing for $21.70 online, plus shipping of $17.18 to Australia. This is a total saving of $105.12, when compared to paying for the phone to be fixed. So in the event of Apple refusing to replace your bent iPhone, you still do have an option to continue to use your phone, protect its new curves and potentially have a collectors item in the future.
This isn't the best long term fix, however if your device has bent slightly, then it is unlikely to bend much more. Alternatively, your next bet would be to try visiting a store further away where they don't know you, to speak with their genius there. Because overall, its wrong to be lumbered with a bent phone after you have forked out so much money for the new iPhone.