Tuesday, October 4, 2016 [Tweets] [Favorites]

iPhone 6 Plus “Touch Disease”

Jason Koebler:

Because Apple won’t publicly acknowledge the fact that the touchscreens of thousands of iPhone 6 Plus devices are spontaneously breaking due to a known engineering flaw, customers have been left in the dark.

[…]

As we’ve detailed in those stories, “touch disease” is an iPhone 6 Plus flaw related to “bendgate” in which the two tiny “Touch IC” connectors, which translate touchscreen presses into a machine input, become unseated from the phone’s logic board. It can be recognized by flickering gray bars along the top of the phone, and is associated with intermittent or total touchscreen failure.

[…]

In the last 24 hours, I’ve gotten emails from 27 separate iPhone 6 Plus owners who have encountered this problem and were unaware that Apple internally considers it a known issue. Many of them have been put through lengthy tech support protocols on obviously broken phones only to be told that they would have to pay $329 for a refurbished phone that is still fundamentally flawed.

Via Nick Heer:

When there was an known engineering defect in my mid-2007 MacBook Pro, I took it in for the out-of-warranty repair program. They didn’t have any of my model’s logic boards in stock, so they replaced it with an upgraded version that had a better video card and faster processor, at no charge. That’s the kind of customer service users who are reporting this problem should be getting[…]

Update (2016-10-11): Tim Hardwick:

Three additional law firms have joined a class action lawsuit against Apple over an alleged defect that causes iPhone 6 Plus touchscreens to become unresponsive and fail.

Update (2016-11-18): Josh Centers:

After much consternation from the user community, Apple has finally created a repair program for iPhone 6 Plus phones suffering from what has been dubbed “touch disease.” Symptoms include flickering and erratic multi-touch behavior. Other iPhone models are not covered by the program, but we haven’t heard of problems beyond the iPhone 6 Plus.

Apple claims the problems are associated with “being dropped multiple times on a hard surface and then incurring further stress on the device,” which seems a bit like blaming the victim. Adam Engst’s father’s iPhone 6 Plus succumbed to touch disease recently, despite having been protected by a wraparound case and generally treated well.

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