For a company that makes money hand over fist, Apple seems to be unable to catch a break when it comes to iPhone battery issues. It all began in late 2016 when Apple launched a free battery replacement program for iPhone 6s owners experiencing random shutdowns. Apple followed that up with iOS 10.2.1 with tweaks to the power management system, as by then iPhone 6 owners had also started experiencing similar random shutdowns.
The issue really spiraled out of control last December, when evidence was mounting on Reddit around random shutdowns and performance throttling on many iPhones with degraded batteries, including the iPhone 7. Shortly after, Apple was forced to issue a formal apology, wherein they admitted to throttling performance on iPhones with degraded batteries. As a last-ditch attempt to pacify livid customers, Apple reduced the price of battery replacements from $79 to $29 for all affected iPhones during 2018.
However, the BBC is now reporting that Apple seems to be refusing the lower-priced battery replacements to customers in the UK, citing a non-existent clause in its terms and conditions. The (non-existent) clause in question apparently states that any damage (e.g., screen damage, malfunctioning components, etc.) to the phone that may impair replacing the battery must be addressed first, prior to the battery replacement.
Two UK residents, Josh Landsburgh and David Bowler were both quoted over $200 to replace their batteries, citing other damage. Both gentlemen contacted Watchdog, a BBC show dealing with consumer protection issues to share their experience. Neither Watchdog nor an independent law firm in the UK was able to find any such requirement or clause in Apple’s official terms and conditions. Apple has not yet made an official statement.