Apple No Longer Replacing Some MacBook Pros Needing Battery Service With Newer Models

In an internal memo obtained by MacRumors, Apple has informed Genius Bar employees and Apple Authorized Service Providers that it is actively working to rebuild worldwide supply of top case assemblies with batteries for Mid 2012 and Early 2013 models of the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display.

mbp 15 retina
Apple's memo says, effective July 26, service inventory of top case assemblies with batteries is now available for new repairs. The directive adds that MobileGenius, the service and support tool that Genius Bar employees use on the iPads they carry around, has stopped presenting messages about delayed repairs.

For all new repair requests, Apple advises Genius Bar employees and Apple Authorized Service Providers to order the necessary inventory. Apple advises its service providers to inform customers that the inventory should arrive within 15 business days of the part order, corresponding with early August.

Prior to today, a customer with an eligible MacBook Pro that failed Apple's battery diagnostic test was offered the option of exchanging the notebook for a functionally equivalent model. Or, customers could wait until battery inventory became available, in exchange for Apple covering the cost of the repair.

Likely because Apple no longer makes Mid 2012 and Early 2013 models of the 15-inch MacBook Pro, the functionally equivalent model ended up being a refurbished 2015 MacBook Pro, or sometimes even a 2016 or 2017 model, according to many customers who shared their experiences on MacRumors and Reddit.

What made the deal so compelling is that, for the exchange, Apple only charged its out-of-warranty battery fee of $199 in the United States, £199 in the UK, or $259 in Canada, significantly less than a new MacBook Pro costs.

Apple's memo today appears to mark the end of the company offering outright exchanges for newer MacBook Pro models. Many users on MacRumors and Reddit have confirmed Genius Bar employees are now informing customers that battery inventory is available in 15 business days as instructed.

It's unclear if Apple Stores will honor exchanges initiated prior to July 26 that are still being processed.

Apple previously said top case assemblies with batteries for the MacBook Pro models would remain severely constrained until September 15, 2017, according to an older internal memo obtained by MacRumors. The directive did not identify a reason for the shortage, which has been ongoing since at least March.

Related Roundup: 14 & 16" MacBook Pro
Tag: GSX
Related Forum: MacBook Pro

Top Rated Comments

Joe Rossignol Avatar
59 months ago
Thanks MacRumors. You took an internal discussion on your forums where people had genuine battery issues and getting nice goodwill gestures and opened it up and gave it massive attention (with other tech sites copying your articles), attracting the attention of chancers and Apple themselves. Really - what was the need?
I can understand your frustration to some extent, but I won't apologize for sharing information that I believe is valuable to our readers. Apple sending out a new memo a few days later is beyond my control. I think something along the lines of "don't shoot the messenger" applies here.

Edit:

Affected users will still be able to get their battery serviced in 15 business days now. That's not much longer than it is taking customers to be sent entirely new MacBook Pro models due to the part constraint. It's simply unfortunate that people aren't getting an essentially free MacBook Pro anymore, but that was merely a bonus, and Apple will still be helping customers that truly need their battery replaced for the exact same cost.

In fact, this puts an end to people who are buying eligible models off eBay or Craigslist just to take advantage of the chance to essentially trade up for cheap, and ensures that users who truly need battery service will receive that repair earlier than September 15, 2017, the original date that Apple quoted the part constraint ending on. Nevertheless, if you want to blame me, I understand.

I stand by my commitment to sharing valuable information with Apple readers, as is my job as a MacRumors contributor. I don't control Apple's subsequent actions.

Edit 2:

Turns out this likely doesn't have anything to do with MacRumors anyway. Looks like it was a planned move by Apple according to this user-shared screenshot below, revised July 21, prior to my original article. I wasn't aware of this information since I obtain my GSX memos from an Apple Authorized Service Provider and it lacked a few extra details this Apple Retail version has.



Attachment Image
Score: 42 Votes (Like | Disagree)
theCraigLaw Avatar
59 months ago
Thanks MacRumors. You took an internal discussion on your forums where people had genuine battery issues and getting nice goodwill gestures and opened it up and gave it massive attention (with other tech sites copying your articles), attracting the attention of chancers and Apple themselves. Really - what was the need?
Score: 41 Votes (Like | Disagree)
v1597psh Avatar
59 months ago
It's happened because of recent MacRumors article on this topic. Everybody with their 2012 MacBook Pros ran out for a cheap laptop replacement
Score: 38 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bkends35 Avatar
59 months ago
Thanks a lot MacRumors.

/s
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
meaning-matters Avatar
59 months ago
I can understand your frustration to some extent, but I can't apologize for sharing information that I believe is valuable to our readers. ...
I think you mean: I won't apologize.

(Great gesture that Joe Rossignol was the first to like this post.)
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NinjaHERO Avatar
59 months ago
The comment anger here seems a little silly. If you didn't even know about the replacement option until the Macrummors article, then how can you be mad at the Macrummors article? If the article alerted Apple and ended the program, you're still better off. If you knew beforehand, you were already taking advantage of this program. If you didn't know until the article was front page news, you had a small window to make it happen. But without the article, you would have just gone on fine never knowing this option existed.

Congrats to everyone who got an updated machine. I think it's awesome this option even existed. Nice move Apple.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

Upcoming Products 2022 Feature

Gurman: Apple Preparing 'Widest Array of New Hardware Products in Its History' for Fall

Sunday January 23, 2022 10:32 am PST by
Apple is working on a number of new products that are set to launch this fall, and Bloomberg's Mark Gurman says that it will be "the widest array" of new devices that Apple has introduced in its history. In his latest "Power On" newsletter, Gurman explains that Apple is working on four new flagship iPhones (iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Max, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max), an updated low-end Ma...
macbook pro 14 16 2021

Three Months After Launch, Apple Still Struggling to Meet Demand for Redesigned 14-Inch and 16-Inch MacBook Pro

Monday January 24, 2022 7:12 am PST by
Three months after their launch, the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros continue to experience high demand and seemingly short supply, with shipping dates for both models stretching into multiple weeks in several of Apple's key markets. In the United States, the baseline 14-inch MacBook Pro with the M1 Pro chip is estimated to ship in three to four weeks, promising an arrival by at least...
General Dropbox Feature

macOS 12.3 Will Include Cloud Storage Changes Affecting Dropbox and OneDrive

Tuesday January 25, 2022 3:31 pm PST by
Dropbox today announced that users who update to macOS 12.3 once that software version becomes available may temporarily encounter issues with opening online-only files in some third-party apps on their Mac. In a support document and an email to customers, Dropbox said it is actively working on full support for online-only files on macOS 12.3 and will begin rolling out an updated version of...
Questionable Design Decisions

Apple's Most Questionable Design Decisions in Recent Memory

Sunday January 23, 2022 2:59 am PST by
Apple has always emphasized the depth of thought that goes into the design of its products. In the foreword to Designed by Apple in California, a photo book released by the company in 2016, Jony Ive explains how Apple strives "to define objects that appear effortless" and "so simple, coherent and inevitable that there could be no rational alternative." But every once in a while even Apple...
Apple Watch Red Yellow Green Feature 1

Apple Launches Black Unity Braided Solo Loop With 'Unity Lights' Watch Face

Wednesday January 26, 2022 6:05 am PST by
Apple today announced the Black Unity Braided Solo Loop for the Apple Watch, as well as a new downloadable watch face, to celebrate Black History Month. Following the launch of the limited edition Black Unity Apple Watch Series 6 and Sport Band in 2021, Apple today launched the Black Unity Braided Solo Loop as part of its celebrations for Black History Month this year.Apple is launching a...
att gigabit internet

AT&T Bringing $180/Month 5-Gigabit Internet to 70 Cities

Monday January 24, 2022 9:20 am PST by
AT&T today announced the launch of upgraded AT&T Fiber plans, which support speeds of up to 5 Gigabits for some customers. There are two separate plans, one "2 GIG" plan and one "5 GIG" plan, available to new and existing AT&T Fiber subscribers. According to AT&T, the new plans are available to nearly 5.2 million customers across 70 metro areas including Los Angeles, Atlanta, Chicago, San...
intel vs m1 max chip purple

Benchmarks Confirm Intel's Latest Core i9 Chip Outperforms Apple's M1 Max With Several Caveats

Wednesday January 26, 2022 8:56 am PST by
Benchmark results have started to surface for MSI's new GE76 Raider, one of the first laptops to be powered by Intel's new 12th-generation Core i9 processor. Intel previously said that its new high-end Core i9 processor is faster than Apple's M1 Max chip in the 16-inch MacBook Pro and, as noted by Macworld, early Geekbench 5 results do appear to confirm this claim, but there are several...
ios 15

Apple Releases iOS 15.3 and iPadOS 15.3 With Fix for Safari Bug That Leaks Browsing Activity

Wednesday January 26, 2022 10:00 am PST by
Apple today released iOS 15.3 and iPadOS 15.3, the third major updates to the iOS and iPadOS 15 operating systems that were released in September 2021. iOS and iPadOS 15.3 come almost two weeks after the release of iOS and iPadOS 15.2.1, minor bug fix updates. The iOS 15.3 and iPadOS 15.3 updates can be downloaded for free and the software is available on all eligible devices over-the-air in ...