Apple admits a manufacturing fault but I still have to pay

Guardian Web |

My iPhone 7 is less than two years old but has developed what has been dubbed “loop disease” – it continually refuses to start up, and will only display the Apple logo. Apple sent me to a store (an hour away) and I have spent several hours on the phone trying to resolve this . Apple has accepted it is a manufacturing issue, but will not do anything about it. It says my only option is to pay £300-plus for a repair/replacement.

For anyone else not having a working mobile would be hugely inconvenient but, for me, it is a disaster as I use it to control my hearing aid. The problem is, I bought the handset “as new” from a friend who was sent it after making an insurance claim. LC, Abingdon

A quick look online shows that you are not the only person whose iPhone 7 won’t restart and is stuck in a loop. While the cause is disputed – some claim it is age-related, others that it is caused by being dropped – iPhone repair experts suggest that it is a relatively easy fix, and just requires a bit of soldering.

Apple operates flat-fee charging for repairs, hence the £300 repair bill. This phone originally cost £600, so it is a hefty charge. But, as you point out, your problem would have been much easier to solve had you bought it direct from Apple or another retailer, as you could have then used the Consumer Rights Act to bring a claim against the seller. Apple was under no legal obligation to help you, as the warranty had expired and you had no contract with the handset’s original vendor.

Despite this, Apple has had a rethink and swapped your handset for one that works, which has been a great relief. The company declined to comment on the case, or the wider problem.

Expect more iPhone 7 owners to come forward with this problem in future. One of the experts on fixing this appears to be a chap called Federico Cerva, who runs an iPhone and iPad repair business in London and does up to 15 such repairs a week. You can find him online.

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