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Apple is working on technology to simplify iPhone battery replacement that could debut later this year, The Information reports.

iphone-16-pro-battery-kosutami.jpg
Alleged iPhone 16 Pro battery with new metal casing.

The move comes in response to a new EU law requiring smartphone manufacturers to ensure batteries can be replaced by owners using easily accessible tools by 2025. According to sources involved in the iPhone's manufacturing process, Apple is exploring the use of electrically induced adhesive debonding technology to achieve this.

The current method of replacing an iPhone battery is challenging and involves removing adhesive strips with tweezers. If these strips break during the process, additional steps involving heat or solvents are necessary to dislodge the adhesive. After removing the old battery, a tray and specialized machine are required to install a new one securely.

In contrast, the new technology Apple is testing involves encasing the battery in metal rather than black foil. Alleged images of an iPhone 16 Pro battery with a metal casing leaked earlier this year. By applying a low voltage of electricity, the new battery can be quickly dislodged from the chassis. Despite this advancement, consumers will still need to open the iPhone themselves, which remains complicated due to the use of adhesives and screws to keep the iPhone's display in place and retain water resistance.

This new battery replacement method is anticipated to debut in at least one iPhone 16 model later this year and could be extended to all versions of the iPhone 17 next year. Apple is expected to continue recommending that users seek professional assistance for battery replacements, given the complexities and potential risks associated with the procedure.

Apple may be exempt from the EU's legislation requiring consumer-friendly battery replacement if its devices meet certain criteria, such as retaining 83% of their capacity after 500 full charges and 80% after 1,000 full charges. The iPhone 15 meets the criteria for 1,000 charges, but earlier models do not meet the 500-charge requirement.

While Apple has a history of offering devices that are challenging to repair due to their tightly sealed designs which enhance water resistance and durability, the company has taken steps to address these concerns by introducing self-repair options and making diagnostic tools available in recent years.

Article Link: Report: Apple Planning to Debut New Battery Replacement Method With iPhone 16
 
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NT1440

macrumors Pentium
May 18, 2008
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I’m always baffled by the inclusion of *screws* as an example of how Apple has somehow made it hard to work on iPhones.

I’ve always found the particular weaving of ribbon cables to be far and away more frustrating during reassembly than…screws. What am I missing here?
 

CalMin

Contributor
Nov 8, 2007
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Like, didn't we used to have replaceable batteries in the days of 'dumb' phones? I always carried a spare with me - and my battery used to last for a week!

Edit:

Note: I posted this comment before my morning coffee, and it wasn't intended to be taken seriously. However, seeing that several people have quoted me, I realize I should clarify that this was meant as sarcasm.
 
Last edited:

NT1440

macrumors Pentium
May 18, 2008
15,037
22,002
Like, didn't we used to have replaceable batteries in the days of 'dumb' phones? I always carried a spare with me - and my battery used to last for a week!
Yes we did, and those mechanical mechanisms to eject them take up space and greatly reduce water ingress protection. A little rubber seal is not adequate to result in the stories of "my phone sat in a pond for two weeks". There are actual engineering tradeoffs that need to be made to accomplish that kind of ease-of-access for swapping batteries.
 

Fuzzball84

macrumors 68020
Apr 19, 2015
2,462
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Someone send Apple an early model smartphone from the 2000s.

They have a removable back and you can swap batteries in and out in seconds.

The system was on windows smartphones, android smartphone's. Even laptops had removable batteries. Even Apple devices 🙄🥴
 

haemolysis

macrumors member
Aug 11, 2022
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I’m always baffled by the inclusion of *screws* as an example of how Apple has somehow made it hard to work on iPhones.

I’ve always found the particular weaving of ribbon cables to be far and away more frustrating during reassembly than…screws. What am I missing here?
Screws themselves aren’t a huge problem but it’s more the fact that they use a proprietary types requiring special drivers.. like they are going out of their way just to make it difficult lol.
 

supergt

macrumors 6502a
Feb 22, 2019
642
1,582
I’m always baffled by the inclusion of *screws* as an example of how Apple has somehow made it hard to work on iPhones.

I’ve always found the particular weaving of ribbon cables to be far and away more frustrating during reassembly than…screws. What am I missing here?

There are 4 different types of screws in an iPhone. What possible reason could Apple have for this complexity? You need a pentablobe screwdriver to open the phone and is used nowhere else. The ribbon placement likely has nothing to due with the repair or reassembly process .
 

coffeemilktea

macrumors 65816
Nov 25, 2022
1,040
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I doubt it would ever happen, but it would be hilarious if future iPhones had easily-removed backs and replaceable batteries like Android flagships from 2014.

Replacing a battery in 30 seconds or less: truly a Magical™ experience. :apple:
 

NT1440

macrumors Pentium
May 18, 2008
15,037
22,002
There are 4 different types of screws in an iPhone. What possible reason could Apple have for this complexity? You need a pentablobe screwdriver to open the phone and is used nowhere else. The ribbon placement likely has nothing to due with the repair or reassembly process .
…I would certainly hope that anyone attempting to fix anything on their own would have a decent selection of the most basic tools one can own. I’ve taken apart dozens of phones with an $8 pentalobe screwdriver and the small screwdrivers for glasses repair.

The ribbon cables need to be layered in the proper order or they may crimp or prevent the display from sitting properly in place when reassembling, from personal experience.

The screws are small, there’s no getting around that. If you can’t handle using small tools then you have no business attempting a repair on any type of smartphone.
 

lkrupp

macrumors 68010
Jul 24, 2004
2,000
4,102
Remember the days when in an airport or grocery store someone dropped their phone? The phone went one way, the battery flew off in another direction and the removable battery case went under the trashcan or display case. Looks like the bureaucrats will be taking us back to the past. Sad
 

seek3r

macrumors 68020
Aug 16, 2010
2,387
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I’m always baffled by the inclusion of *screws* as an example of how Apple has somehow made it hard to work on iPhones.

I’ve always found the particular weaving of ribbon cables to be far and away more frustrating during reassembly than…screws. What am I missing here?
I would guess in this case they mean in comparison to battery packs that just pop in and out like the old macbooks and powerbooks had
 
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seek3r

macrumors 68020
Aug 16, 2010
2,387
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Remember the days when in an airport or grocery store someone dropped their phone? The phone went one way, the battery flew off in another direction and the removable battery case went under the trashcan or display case. Looks like the bureaucrats will be taking us back to the past. Sad
Given this is literally inside the phone for your scenario to happen your phone would also have to be completely shattered and mangled and tracking down the battery would be the least of your worries
 

GMShadow

macrumors 68000
Jun 8, 2021
1,940
7,906
Like, didn't we used to have replaceable batteries in the days of 'dumb' phones? I always carried a spare with me - and my battery used to last for a week!

Your dumb phone made calls and sent text messages.

Easily swappable batteries are also lower capacity by design, because they need a surrounding case to protect the cells from damage due to handling, drops, etc.
 

cocky jeremy

macrumors 603
Jul 12, 2008
6,261
6,672
There are 4 different types of screws in an iPhone. What possible reason could Apple have for this complexity? You need a pentablobe screwdriver to open the phone and is used nowhere else. The ribbon placement likely has nothing to due with the repair or reassembly process .
What's it matter? Tools are required to do it yourself. Want to change it yourself? Go buy the tools. Otherwise, go to someone that does that sort of thing.
 

NT1440

macrumors Pentium
May 18, 2008
15,037
22,002
Screws themselves aren’t a huge problem but it’s more the fact that they use a proprietary types requiring special drivers.. like they are going out of their way just to make it difficult lol.
That’s like complaining that torx drivers exist when you prefer to use a Philips head.

Pentalobe is in no way proprietary and a good screwdriver for it costs like $8. If you’re the type of person who actually repairs stuff you’d have bought one years ago…
 
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