While Apple is generally known for its excellent hardware, sometimes issues can crop up among some of the millions of devices it sells each day.
Today, the company announced that it is creating a formal program for replacing the power button on the iPhone 5, as it “has determined that the sleep/wake button mechanism on a small percentage of iPhone 5 models may stop working or work intermittently.”
If you have an iPhone 5 and think you might be having that issue, you can click here to see whether your phone would be eligible to have the button replaced.
If you’re eligible and live in the US or Canada, you can send it in to Apple’s Repair Center (those who live elsewhere have to wait until May 2). Here are your options for getting it there:
While Apple doesn’t give an estimate for the number of users who might be affected by the issue, they have said that it may affect devices made through March 2013. It first went on sale in fall 2012.
It’s surprising it’s taken so long for this to become a formal program: Business Insider’s Steve Kovach had to replace two iPhones during the period that the faulty devices were made, noting the issue back in May last year. Others here experienced issues as well.
As he wrote last spring:
That’s not a good sign for a device that’s only been on the market for about eight months. These things are supposed to last about two years, not a few months.
The experience reminded me of a recent report I read that Apple is having some problems with iPhone 5s coming out of Foxconn, the Chinese manufacturing company it contracts to build its gadgets. According to Tom’s Hardware, only 80% of the iPhone 5s made at Foxconn meet Apple’s quality standards. Apple’s contract with Foxconn reportedly requires 90% of devices to meet those standards. Apple does its best to send the faulty devices back to Foxconn, but unfortunately some slip through the cracks.
It’s certainly not great to see Apple have to roll out a replacement program, but it’s important to note that the iPhone 5C that replaced the iPhone 5 in Apple’s lineup doesn’t appear to share any of the power button issues.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.