A new report indicates that the iOS 11.3 update is killing touch functionality in iPhone 8 devices that have had their screens replaced by a third-party repair shop.
Apple released iOS 11.3 at the end of March, and the update is killing touch functionality in iPhone 8s repaired with some aftermarket screens that worked prior to the update. That means people who broke their phone and had the audacity to get it repaired by anyone other than Apple is having a hard time using their phone. “This has caused my company over 2,000 reshipments,” Aakshay Kripalani, CEO of Injured Gadgets, a Georgia-based retailer and repair shop, told me in a Facebook message. “Customers are annoyed and it seems like Apple is doing this to prevent customers from doing 3rd party repair.”
Michael Oberdick – owner and operator of iOutlet, an Ohio-based used iPhone store and repair shop – had decided to hold off on repairing iPhone 8 screens, due to a touch functionality-related issue on iPhone 7 devices repaired by third-parties.
“We don’t even do the 8 repairs this year, on purpose,” Oberdick told me over the phone. “I had a really good feeling that something like this was going to happen again.
A quickly released update fixed the iPhone 7 issue. It remains to be seen if Apple will release an update for iOS 11.3 that will fix the iPhone 8 issue.
There apparently is a fix for the issue, but it requires re-opening the iPhone and upgrading a small microchip that powers the iPhone’s screen.
This is just the latest skirmish between Apple and third-party repair shops that aren’t officially authorized Apple service providers. While using an unauthorized repair shop to fix devices no longer cover under Apple’s warranty or AppleCare is cheaper, users run the risk of issues like this arising from time-to-time.