iPhone Screen Repairs to Get Faster as Apple Moves to Software-Only Calibration Process

Apple has announced that its iPhone display calibration process no longer requires specialized hardware, according to an internal service-related document obtained by MacRumors today.

Starting today, Genius Bars and Apple Authorized Service Providers can calibrate the display on a repaired iPhone 6s or newer by simply connecting the device to a Mac mini or MacBook Air running Apple's calibration and diagnostics software, without the need to use a so-called 3D Touch Calibration Fixture.

horizonmachine

3D Touch Calibration Fixture via Reuters

Apple says this change will result in three benefits for service providers and customers:

  1. More flexible workspaces for service providers, as the calibration fixture takes up quite a bit of space.

  2. Reduced wait times for customers, suggesting that the software-based calibration process is faster.

  3. Later this year, more Apple Authorized Service Providers around the world will have an opportunity to expand their in-store repair offerings to include iPhone display repairs.

Apple will outline the required steps for service providers to transition from the hardware to the software process later today, according to the internal communication, which was earlier reported by iMore's Rene Ritchie.

Apple Authorized Service Providers with a 3D Touch Calibration Fixture will be required to return the hardware at a later date to be announced.

iPhone display calibration ensures that a replacement display is fully integrated with the device's logic board at the system level. The process has been required since the arrival of Touch ID on the iPhone 5s in 2013, followed by 3D Touch on the iPhone 6s and newer, and Face ID on the iPhone X and newer.

Touch ID and Face ID calibration was already completed in software, and now 3D Touch calibration will be too, completely eliminating the need for hardware. If the display on an iPhone is replaced, but the calibration process is not completed, then Touch ID, Face ID, and/or 3D Touch will not function.

Apple only provided a handful of third-party service providers with its calibration fixture, so this change should result in faster, more flexible, and more widely available iPhone screen repairs in many countries.

Since Apple made Horizon machines available to Authorized Service Providers, there are more AASPs that can provide screen fixes than Apple Stores worldwide, making it quicker and faster for customers to get a screen repair. With change to a software-based calibration process, thousands more AASPs will be able to provide in-store screen fixes without the need to send devices off for repair.

Top Rated Comments

AngerDanger Avatar
35 months ago
That boxy plastic design looks so familiar…



I knew it!

Attachment Image
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Brookzy Avatar
35 months ago
Something tells me that software-based calibration, no matter how advanced, cannot beat hardware-based calibration.

Unless the hardware steps are now taking place at the factory prior to shipment I’m concerned that displays calibrated with software will be less accurate.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Yvan256 Avatar
35 months ago
('https://www.macrumors.com/2018/09/17/iphone-calibration-process-now-software-only/')
Starting today, Genius Bars and Apple Authorized Service Providers can calibrate the display on a repaired iPhone 6s or newer by simply connecting the device to a Mac mini or MacBook Air running Apple's calibration and diagnostics software, without the need to use a so-called 3D Touch Calibration Fixture.
Why did they specify the Mac Mini and MacBook Air, the only two Macs left with USB type-A ports? I thought USB-C was the future? ;)
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
drewsof07 Avatar
35 months ago
Something tells me that software-based calibration, no matter how advanced, cannot beat hardware-based calibration.

Unless the hardware steps are now taking place at the factory prior to shipment I’m concerned that displays calibrated with software will be less accurate.
"Calibration" is a bit of a misnomer. What they really mean is pairing the replacement parts to the logic board as a means of "security" by preventing non-AASP third party repair.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ChrisMoBro Avatar
35 months ago
So they should be cheaper then!
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Ray Brady Avatar
35 months ago
What is this "Mac Mini" they speak of? An exciting and mysterious new product not yet available to the public?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

tile sticker e1570533758981

Tile CEO: 'We Welcome Competition From Apple, But We Think It Needs to Be Fair'

Tuesday May 4, 2021 9:51 am PDT by
Just after Apple announced its AirTags, Tile CEO CJ Prober relayed his concerns about competing with Apple in the tracking space, and said that Tile would ask Congress to investigate Apple's business practices specific to Find My and item trackers. Prober this week did an interview with Bloomberg, where he further expanded on Tile's complaints about Apple and why he feels that Tile is...
signal instagram ads3

Signal Shares the Instagram Ads Facebook Doesn't Want You to See

Wednesday May 5, 2021 1:29 am PDT by
Encrypted messaging app Signal has had a series of Instagram ads blocked from the social media platform, after it attempted to show users how much data the Facebook-owned company collects about them and how it's used to push targeted ads. In a blog post, Signal described how it generated the ads to show users why they were seeing them, simply by declaring upfront the information that the...
tracking disabled ios 14 5

Analytics Suggest 96% of Users Leave App Tracking Disabled in iOS 14.5

Friday May 7, 2021 1:51 am PDT by
An early look at an ongoing analysis of Apple's App Tracking Transparency suggests that the vast majority of iPhone users are leaving app tracking disabled since the feature went live on April 26 with the release of iOS 14.5. According to the latest data from analytics firm Flurry, just 4% of iPhone users in the U.S. have actively chosen to opt into app tracking after updating their device...
fortnite apple logo 2

Epic CEO Tim Sweeney Admits App Store's 30% Cut Is Similar to Consoles, Would Have Accepted Special Deal With Apple

Tuesday May 4, 2021 1:54 pm PDT by
Apple's legal battle with Epic Games is continuing on, and during the second day of the trial, Epic Games' CEO Tim Sweeney continued his testimony against Apple. Sweeney was grilled by Apple's lawyers, and made several points seemingly favorable to Apple. In addition to mentioning how he prefers Apple's iPhone and values Apple's privacy policies that he's aiming to dismantle, Sweeney...
snapchat dark mode

Snapchat Rolls Out Dark Mode on iOS

Wednesday May 5, 2021 1:17 am PDT by
Nearly two years following the release of iOS and iPadOS 13, which included native, built-in, and systemwide dark mode, Snapchat, one of the world's most prominent social media networks, has finally rolled out a dark mode theme for iOS users. Snapchat began testing a dark mode theme of its app design late last year with a small group of iOS users. Now, Snapchat says that as of this week, it...
netflix sign up

Apple Discussed 'Punitive Measures' Against Netflix for Dropping In-App Purchases

Wednesday May 5, 2021 11:03 am PDT by
As the Epic Games v. Apple trial progresses into its third day, Apple's internal documents and communications with various companies are continuing to surface, giving us some insight into the dealings that Apple has had around the App Store. Back in December 2018, Netflix stopped offering in-app subscription options for new or resubscribing members and instead began requiring them to sign up ...
iphone 12 preorder purple

Apple Begins Transition to Randomized Serial Numbers With Purple iPhone 12

Wednesday May 5, 2021 9:17 am PDT by
MacRumors previously reported about Apple's plan to switch to randomized serial numbers for future products starting in early 2021, and this transition has now started with the new purple iPhone 12 model in multiple countries. With assistance from Aaron Zollo, host of the YouTube channel ZolloTech, we can confirm that the purple iPhone 12 released last month has a new 10-character serial...
airtag 1

AirTag Anti-Stalking Measures 'Just Aren't Sufficient' Says Washington Post Report

Wednesday May 5, 2021 6:03 pm PDT by
The safeguards that Apple built into AirTags to prevent them from being used to track someone "just aren't sufficient," The Washington Post's Geoffrey Fowler said today in a report investigating how AirTags can be used for covert stalking. Fowler planted an AirTag on himself and teamed up with a colleague to be pretend stalked, and he came to the conclusion that the AirTags are a "new means...
iphone 13 pro max dummy notch

iPhone 13 Pro Max Dummy Model Depicts Smaller Notch

Tuesday May 4, 2021 1:08 pm PDT by
Apple's iPhone 13 models are expected to feature a slimmed down notch, marking the first major change to the TrueDepth camera system since it was introduced in the 2017 iPhone X. We're still months away from the launch of the iPhone 13, but Lewis Hilsenteger of Unbox Therapy managed to get an iPhone 13 Pro Max dummy model that represents what we can expect from the new 2021 device. Dummy...
iPad Pro July Shipping

12.9-Inch iPad Pro Now Delivers as Late as Mid-July

Wednesday May 5, 2021 7:10 am PDT by
While the new 12.9-inch iPad Pro is set to launch in the second half of May, orders placed today are estimated for delivery as late as mid-July on Apple's online store in the United States — some two months later. The new 11-inch iPad Pro is faring better so far, with some configurations available for delivery in the last week of May. The new 12.9-inch iPad Pro features a Liquid Retina XDR ...