iPhone repair under repair program refused by Apple until paid for other repairs

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Jul 29, 2020
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I have an iPhone 7 with a "No service" issue. This happened after a forced update on it. Since we updated it, it does not connect to the cellular. This is what steps I took to resolve it:
- calling Xfinity Mobile (our cell provider) and debugged it with the CS representative. They claimed, it is a known iPhone 7 issue and we should contact Apple CS.
- I did call Apple service and went through the same debugging and the CS representative said, it is an issue for which it needs to be sent out to Apple service and she is mailing us a box to send it in. She claimed, it need to be manually updated by their expert.
- Apple sent me a text message, that the phone has water damage and I have to pay $319+tax to repair that damage first and then they will proceed with the original.
- I called the CS again and talked with CR rep (for an hour and a half) about why they cannot perform a manual update on a phone which worked perfectly fine before the update and first he said it could lead to destroying the phone and when I asked to proceed anyway (taking the risk on myself) he refused. I asked what can I do as I don't have money to pay for this costly repair (currently basically price of the new iPhone 7), and he said he is going to transfer me to his supervisor, but hanged up on me after 10 minutes.
- i also asked for proof of water damage but I was rejected.

About the issue:
Apple has a repair (recall) program: Link to the policy. for those issues. In some cases it eventually leads to replacement of the mother board (which costs $319+tax). There are many people, who have the same issue with their phone and Apple gives them different reasons why they won't repair theirs (water damage, little crack on the display, scratch on frame...).

iPhone 7 is a certified IP67 device and ours has never been in worse condition than in rain. When I asked how is it possible, that a phone certified as water resistant has a water damage I was told "the difference between water resistant and waterproof" which I understand very well. So is this product falsely advertised?
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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My opinion is that the best solution is to buy another phone for about a hundred dollars and move on. These kinds of tech issues are rarely solvable. They say it has water damage, they're the experts. How are you going to argue with this? You can't prove that it doesn't have water damage, and they're not going to diagnose a new problem with a phone that doesn't work correctly. I'm sorry that I don't have any ideas on how to extricate yourself from this mess.
 
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Jul 13, 2020
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They seriously said you had water damage? If so I would have asked how did this happen on a phone that you are supposed to be able to stick in a glass of water safely.
I think you should question how this so called water damage happened.
 
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smd

Mar 14, 2018
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There are moisture sensors inside the iphone case which is how they know the internals were exposed. While the iPhone is tested to IP67, seals can degrade over time. Apple explicitly says to not get the phone wet and explicitly excludes moisture damage from the warranty, so there is no false advertising.
 
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weihlac

Verified Member
Jun 30, 2017
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Since you can buy a renewed iPhone 7 for ~$200, buy a renewed one (which is what yours will be after Apple service) or buy a new phone. The iPhone 7 is 4 years old; in smartphone years that is an eon or a century. Apple is about to release iPhone 12.