Faulty iPhone 6 Plus Cameras to Be Replaced Free by Apple
Apple has launched a replacement program for malfunctioning rear cameras on some iPhone 6 Plus models. The affected iPhone 6 Plus devices have a camera component failure which causes photos and video taken with the devices rear camera to appear blurry rather than focused (note Apple calls the rear camera on iPhones the iSight camera, and the front camera a FaceTime camera). Not all iPhone Plus models are impacted, and some iPhone 6 Plus devices with a repair-eligible serial number appear to take normal focused pictures.
Officially called the “iSight Camera Replacement Program for iPhone 6 Plus”, users who have the device can check their serial number on an Apple website to see if they are eligible for a free rear camera repair, which is done by replacing the malfunctioning camera unit. Apple states the devices impacted by the program were mostly sold between September 2014 and January 2015.
Determining if your iPhone 6 Plus is eligible for the free camera repair program is quick and easy:
- Retrieve the iPhone 6 Plus serial number from the device by going to Settings > General > About
- Go to the iSight Camera Replacement site on Apple.com and enter your serial number to check eligibility
Assuming an iPhone 6 Plus with its camera falls within the impacted serial number range, a message stating “The serial number you entered is eligible for this program. Please choose one of the service options below.” will appear, offering you three choices to have the camera component replaced: taking the iPhone 6 Plus to an Apple Retail Store, calling Apple Technical Support, or going to an Apple Authorized Service Provider. Each option will replace the defective rear camera free of charge.
If your iPhone Plus falls into the eligible range and is having issues, it is a good idea to get it repaired by Apple for free
even if the camera is currently taking normal appropriately focused photos – since (update: some users have reported that only cameras exhibiting problems are fixed, regardless of the serial number. It’s possible the camera could later malfunction, in which case, it would be eligible for a repair). Additionally, as we’ve mentioned in the past, Apple often repairs other malfunctioning components at the same time as a courtesy, though that’s by no means a guarantee, and any device malfunctioning due to user abuse or damage will likely not be covered by the repair programs.
If you’re going to send your iPhone in for repair, don’t forget to back it up first, ideally to both iCloud and iTunes.
The degree of the rear cameras failure to properly focus seems to vary per effected iPhone 6 Plus, but it can range from severe inability to focus the rear camera adequately at all, to mildly blurry images in conditions where the photo taken should be crisp. An example of a blurry iPhone 6 Plus with a camera eligible for free replacement is shown below:
Another even more extreme example of a failing iPhone 6 Plus rear camera is shown below, recording an incredibly blurry and strangely out of focus video at an Apple Store, apparently taken before a repair was offered:
(Above blurry camera image from yours truly at OSXDaily.com, video from a user on Apple Support Forums)
Apple states the camera replacement program will be effective for three years after an iPhone 6 Plus first retail sale.