iPhone 6 and 6 Plus Models Affected
As far as we know, the problem affects iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models that have been repaired by a third party. The iPhone detects that new parts have been installed, and when upgraded to iOS 9, the mysteriously aggravating “Error 53” prevents the phone from functioning. Worse than having a bricked phone, however, is that unless end-users have an up-to-date backup of their data, all of the documents, apps, and photos are gone. Our research indicates that there is no way for anyone to recover what is lost in the process.
What Does “Error 53” Mean?
Unfortunately, if you’re seeing “Error 53” on your iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, it may mean that your phone is “bricked.” As one iPhone repair shop owner puts it [NSFW language in the video], you could walk up to the Genius Bar with $1,000,000 and not get your data back.
What’s Behind “Error 53”?
We hope to find out why Apple implements a policy where end users aren’t free to choose someone other than Apple to repair their devices. We believe that Apple may be intentionally forcing users to use their repair services, which cost much more than most third party repair shops. Where you could get your screen replaced by a neighborhood repair facility for $50-80, Apple charges $129 or more. There is incentive for Apple to keep end users from finding alternative methods to fix their products.
Think of it this way: Let’s say you bought a car, and had your alternator replaced by a local mechanic. Under Apple’s strategy, your car would no longer start because you didn’t bring it to an official dealership. They intentionally disable your car because you tried to fix it yourself.
That is wrong, and we hope to prove that it violates various consumer protection laws in the United States.
If you have encountered “Error 53” with your iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, or a newer iPhone device, we’d like to hear from you. There is no cost to contact us and we only get paid if we win.
If you still have your phone, right now, we recommend you keep it. Also keep any written information from Apple or any quotes/receipts you may have related to the repair.