By Alexandra Burlacu | Jun 04, 2013 03:00 PM EDT
Replacing a damaged display of an iPhone 5 was previously a hassle, but Apple has apparently made good on its word and started doing the repairs in-store, for $149.
Until now, Apple would send the iPhone off for repair and offer customers a refurbished smartphone instead. And, if the warranty period expired or the customer did not have AppleCare+, the whole operation would cost $229 and some extra headaches.
A little while back, we reported that Apple planned to update its AppleCare service with new warranty subscriptions and in-store device repairs to reduce costs and make things easier for everyone.
According to a MacRumors report, Monday, it seems Apple kept its word and got to work. The report cites sources with knowledge of Apple's plans and also points to a forum where one user claims to have a friend working as a manager at an Apple store "up north," who said the company now fixes damaged iPhone 5 displays in-store for $149. This offer stands for customers who signed up for Apple's $99 AppleCare+ package and it covers cracked displays as well as multitouch issues.
Apple's in-store repairs will reportedly lead to significant savings of roughly $1 billion per year, and it makes sense. Instead of paying to send off the smartphone to another location, paying again to have it fixed, and paying for a refurbished unit to give to the customer in exchange, this in-store repair makes everything easier and faster. Replacing a cracked iPhone 5 display in-store reportedly takes just 10 minutes.
While $149 may still seem like a bit much for replacing a smartphone display, it's actually quite a competitive price, MacRumors further notes, pointing to iPhone repair site Quick iFix. Apple's repair cost even prompted the repair site to lower its own repair costs. Back in early May, an iPhone display replacement cost $174.99 at Quick iFix and now it costs only $139.99.
AppleCare+, meanwhile, costs $99 up front and an additional $49 for each replacement, so it's not $149 on top of the $99 AppleCare+ fee. Compared to the previous cost of $229, this is a significantly better alternative.
Apple will reportedly start offering more in-store repair options from July, including fixes for the smartphone's camera, logic board and sleep/wake buttons. The company already offers in-store fixes for home button, receiver and battery issues.
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