Apple have announced via their support website that they will be offering to fix (at no charge) some faulty iPhone 5 handsets that have a malfunctioning on/off button.

There have been mutterings in various forums about this for a while but only now have Apple announced their offer to fix these dodgy smart phones.

The problem affects some of the older iPhone 5’s. The exact number is not known (or at least not been shared by the company) but Apple said in it’s support forum that it is a “small percentage” that are affected. The problematic handsets were manufactured until March 2013 and the problem is that the on/off buttons either cease to work or work intermittently.

On it’s website, the technology giant said “Apple will replace the sleep/wake button mechanism, free of charge, on iPhone 5 models that exhibit this issue and have a qualifying serial number”. V

For US and Canada customers the replacement program is available right away but those in other countries will have to wait a little longer until May 2nd 2014. You can check the eligibility of your handset by visiting the Apple support web page here.

Apple doesn’t have a good history of dealing with ‘mass problems’ as it prides itself of making top quality products. It learned it’s lesson in 2010 with the issues of reception affecting many iPhone 4 handsets. After lots of bad publicity it eventually sorted the problem for it’s users. It is now much keener to address the issues sooner.

So, to fix your handset, the process seems simple enough, whereby the customer simply takes or posts the handset to an Apple retail store or an authorised dealer. This will then be sent off to an authorised repair company to actually carry out the work.

Some of the things to be aware of if this affects you are that
* you must back up all of your data before taking your phone in, or you will it all
* if you are operating your phone on iOS 6 then after the repair you will need to upgrade it to iOS 7
* your handset must have been purchased in the country you are in (problematic for some eBay purchases)

Those of you that have already paid to get this problem fixed can apply to Apple (using the link above) to claim your money back. Good luck!

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