Report: Apple Planning to Debut New Battery Replacement Method With iPhone 16

Apple is working on technology to simplify iPhone battery replacement that could debut later this year, The Information reports.

iphone 16 pro battery kosutamiAlleged iPhone 16 Pro battery with new metal casing.

The move comes in response to a new EU law requiring smartphone manufacturers to ensure batteries can be replaced by owners using easily accessible tools by 2025. According to sources involved in the ‌iPhone‌'s manufacturing process, Apple is exploring the use of electrically induced adhesive debonding technology to achieve this.

The current method of replacing an ‌iPhone‌ battery is challenging and involves removing adhesive strips with tweezers. If these strips break during the process, additional steps involving heat or solvents are necessary to dislodge the adhesive. After removing the old battery, a tray and specialized machine are required to install a new one securely.

In contrast, the new technology Apple is testing involves encasing the battery in metal rather than black foil. Alleged images of an iPhone 16 Pro battery with a metal casing leaked earlier this year. By applying a low voltage of electricity, the new battery can be quickly dislodged from the chassis. Despite this advancement, consumers will still need to open the ‌iPhone‌ themselves, which remains complicated due to the use of adhesives and screws to keep the ‌iPhone‌'s display in place and retain water resistance.

This new battery replacement method is anticipated to debut in at least one iPhone 16 model later this year and could be extended to all versions of the iPhone 17 next year. Apple is expected to continue recommending that users seek professional assistance for battery replacements, given the complexities and potential risks associated with the procedure.

Apple may be exempt from the EU's legislation requiring consumer-friendly battery replacement if its devices meet certain criteria, such as retaining 83% of their capacity after 500 full charges and 80% after 1,000 full charges. The iPhone 15 meets the criteria for 1,000 charges, but earlier models do not meet the 500-charge requirement.

While Apple has a history of offering devices that are challenging to repair due to their tightly sealed designs which enhance water resistance and durability, the company has taken steps to address these concerns by introducing self-repair options and making diagnostic tools available in recent years.

Related Roundups: iPhone 16, iPhone 17, iPhone 16 Pro

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Top Rated Comments

CalMin Avatar
3 weeks ago
Like, didn't we used to have replaceable batteries in the days of 'dumb' phones? I always carried a spare with me - and my battery used to last for a week!

Edit:

Note: I posted this comment before my morning coffee, and it wasn't intended to be taken seriously. However, seeing that several people have quoted me, I realize I should clarify that this was meant as sarcasm.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
trusso Avatar
3 weeks ago

After removing the old battery, a tray and specialized machine are required to install a new one securely.
Nope.

Done it myself with the included iFixit adhesive. No issues.

MacRumors, please don’t regurgitate the Apple line when it’s patently untrue.

kthxbye.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NT1440 Avatar
3 weeks ago
I’m always baffled by the inclusion of *screws* as an example of how Apple has somehow made it hard to work on iPhones.

I’ve always found the particular weaving of ribbon cables to be far and away more frustrating during reassembly than…screws. What am I missing here?
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Fuzzball84 Avatar
3 weeks ago
Someone send Apple an early model smartphone from the 2000s.

They have a removable back and you can swap batteries in and out in seconds.

The system was on windows smartphones, android smartphone's. Even laptops had removable batteries. Even Apple devices ??
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
haemolysis Avatar
3 weeks ago

I’m always baffled by the inclusion of *screws* as an example of how Apple has somehow made it hard to work on iPhones.

I’ve always found the particular weaving of ribbon cables to be far and away more frustrating during reassembly than…screws. What am I missing here?
Screws themselves aren’t a huge problem but it’s more the fact that they use a proprietary types requiring special drivers.. like they are going out of their way just to make it difficult lol.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
NT1440 Avatar
3 weeks ago

Like, didn't we used to have replaceable batteries in the days of 'dumb' phones? I always carried a spare with me - and my battery used to last for a week!
Yes we did, and those mechanical mechanisms to eject them take up space and greatly reduce water ingress protection. A little rubber seal is not adequate to result in the stories of "my phone sat in a pond for two weeks". There are actual engineering tradeoffs that need to be made to accomplish that kind of ease-of-access for swapping batteries.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)