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The batteries are soldered in?

You have to be kidding me.

You spend $600 for a iPhone and the batteries are soldered in?

Genius.

The iPhone’s battery is apparently soldered on inside the device and cannot be swapped out by the owner like most other cell phones.

Apple spokeswoman Jennifer Hakes said Thursday the company posted the battery replacement details on its Web site last Friday after the product went on sale.

Users would have to submit their iPhone to Apple for battery service. The service will cost users $79, plus $6.95 for shipping, and will take three business days.

21 Responses to “The batteries are soldered in?”

  1. #9 Says:

    Craig Ferguson of the Late Show shares his views on the iPhone and Microsoft.

  2. Phelps Says:

    I had a Nokia that I had to replace because the plastic clips that held the battery in (which I never replaced or swapped out) broke off and couldn’t be repaired. I’ve had two iPods and four cell phones and I’ve never changed a battery in any of them.

    If you think that the average iPhone owner is ever going to want to or need to change the battery, you might want to take another look at the market.

  3. triticale Says:

    I have had cell phones on which I swapped out batteries every day. That’s what you do when the phone is cabled to a computer for call testing. One call every 90 seconds is better than hour-long calls, as the charger can actually catch partway up in the 12 second pause between calls.

  4. Squeaky Wheel Says:

    That’s why I never buy anything the day it comes out.

  5. #9 Says:

    If you think that the average iPhone owner is ever going to want to or need to change the battery, you might want to take another look at the market.

    I don’t know. I can see your point, I have an old Palm Pilot where the batteries are soldered in, but everything I have bought after that has removable batteries.

    I don’t think this would be an issue if first there wasn’t a problem, and second, why are they charging $79 for what should be a warranty issue? Being without a cell phone for three days doesn’t sound good to me. I don’t like the return to depot service method.

    The second revision of the iPhone might be interesting. But sometimes it is just better to have two devices rather than a does-it-all. Same reason I have the small Swiss Army knife on the keychain and carry a Leatherman for the heavy duty stuff.

  6. Gmac Says:

    There’s another reason why I’ll never buy one. This isn’t the first time they’ve had this kind of problem. As I recall the first Ipod also had battery issues.

  7. Metulj Says:

    I am a Mac user for three reasons: 1. The hardware is top notch (you can’t cobble a PC together that can compete with a MacMini at the price), 2. The OS is Unix and 3. the total cost of ownership is better if you don’t buy machines frequently. Beyond that I never buy their first gen products because of this sort of issue. Then again, I never buy Microsoft stuff because they don’t seem to understand that when this sort of issue comes up, you’d better be ready to roll out the fix post haste. Apple does this. Still, this is an idiotic program to fix the phone. Another thing: They also are hooked to AT&T only. Never. Never. Never. Cingular/AT&T sucks.

  8. gattsuru Says:

    It’s around 400 charge cycles, though, so the average user will probably get two years or so out of the thing. Add in that most people treat phones as disposable (yes, it creeps me out too), and this isn’t the worst part of the iPhone (did anyone say glass screen in a pocket?). The price is ridiculous as is the design choice — the battery isn’t worth 30 USD, nor is the smooth backplate worth the hassle of a hard-to-replace battery — but that’s to be expected for a Mac product.

    I like user-swappable batteries, for the simple reason that my Nokia 770 can run nearly forever if need be because I can simply swap out cheap cells every five hours, but I doubt most of the iPhone’s userbase is going to be on WiFi four hours straight. Chatting ten hours straight is more likely… but that’s a concern with most phones, and most people don’t care to carry spare batteries.

    Metulj, you’re kidding about MacMini price, right? A C2Duo 1.8 ghz processor only sets you back 117 USD, a decent motherboard less than 90 USD, 2 gigs of RAM for 70 USD, a real (250 GB) hard drive for 70 USD, a power supply and case for 70 USD, a DVD +/- drive for 25 USD. Even with the price of XP or Vista, that still leaves you 50 USD for a bargain-type graphics card without hitting the MacMini 1.63 ghz’s 600 USD price, while getting much better components. If we start comparing the more ‘powerful’ 1.8 ghz one’s extra 100 USD price, you can even grab an nVidia 7800GS. If you’re not gaming, a Ubuntu system is cheaper and simpler for complex programs (if you know enough to use Microsoft Video Encoder or that Mac one, you can use Ubuntu), and can deal with even more RAM and a real processor.

    There are advantages to Apple — most notably, the layout and multitasking are pretty admirable if you’re not going to go Linux, the laptop prices — but desktop power at a price really isn’t one you want to tow around. I don’t think Unix (more precisely, a BSD-derivative, although the difference is mainly a licensing one here) is that big of a bonus for most people, either, but that’s a separate topic.

  9. Standard Mischief Says:

    As I recall the first Ipod also had battery issues.

    It did, but in that case the batteries were only plugged in. So the third party market stepped in and filled a need (merely one example). Soldered brings this to an entirely new level, however. It looks like for a third party replacement to occur, well you are going to have to let some one else handle that part. I’ll bet only one person in a hundred knows how to solder anymore.

  10. Metulj Says:

    “hat still leaves you 50 USD for a bargain-type graphics card without hitting the MacMini 1.63 ghz’s 600 USD price,”

    Gotcha. Most of the cost of a PC that is worth a shit is the graphics card. Nothing says dinky PC like chattering frame rates. What’s the equivalent graphics card going to run you? $250+

  11. Metulj Says:

    Gattsuru: “I don’t think Unix (more precisely, a BSD-derivative, although the difference is mainly a licensing one here) is that big of a bonus for most people, either, but that’s a separate topic.”

    Current uptime on this machine I am typing on: 101 days. Frozen program (Invariably MS Word): kill -9

  12. Stormy Dragon Says:

    >Being without a cell phone for three days doesn’t sound good to me.

    That’s a standard Apple tactic: make any repairs so inconvenient and expensive that 95% of people will just shell out for a new one.

  13. Jacob Says:

    http://www.engadget.com/2007/07/06/iphone-hacked-for-shell-access/

  14. gattsuru Says:

    Most of the cost of a PC that is worth a shit is the graphics card. Nothing says dinky PC like chattering frame rates. What’s the equivalent graphics card going to run you? $250+

    If the comparison is against the MacMini’s integrated clip of a GPU, it’s pretty easy to match. The Intel GMA950 only has a fill rate in the 1.6 gigapixel per second range, and ‘borrows’ main system memory. It’s also got limited shader model support, but since advanced features are only done in hardware under the DirectX API, that’s understandable.

    For 50 bucks, you can pretty easily find a GeForce 7300 LE or ATi x1550, both of which will easily kick the GMA950′s tail while freeing RAM and central processor power.

    If you want a really good graphics card, you can end up spending 300+ USD on a Nvidia 8800, but that’ll give you a GPU with 640 megabytes of gDDR3 memory and a fill rate in the 24 gigapixel per second range. That’s not something comparable to the GMA950 — it’s better than what Apple puts into the Mac Pro as default.

    Current uptime on this machine I am typing on: 101 days. Frozen program (Invariably MS Word): kill -9

    Switch to OpenOffice, it’s a lot nicer, more stable, and completely capable of saving into word formats.

    I’m typing this on a Vista machine that hasn’t rebooted for five months. It’s not Unix in particular that makes Mac OS X stable, at least unless you’re using the device as a server, but just that’s just because there is simply less unstable code aimed at the Mac, and most drivers are held further away from the kernel.

  15. Guav Says:

    They sold 1 milion iPhones in a week. You’re damn right they are genius.

  16. #9 Says:

    They sold 1 million iPhones in a week. You’re damn right they are genius.

    Er, there is another answer. Think sheep.

  17. phelps Says:

    Yeah, I’m a total sheep. That’s why I am making this comment on my iPhone right now.

    I’ve had it for a week while I was on vacation in BFE. The glass screen is holding up better than some LCD plastic covers and is MILLIONS of times less likely to scratch. I havezero scratches after a week of running around backwoods OK. EDGE was fine on the ride back and forth. I was way off any network while I was out, but I got the battery time promised on the iPod side.

    You guys will come around about the time all the grammas and urkels are getting them too.

  18. Jim W Says:

    Apple has been operating like this since day one. For all their hype about how open and hacker friendly their “culture” is, their products are the worst proprietary garbage in the consumer sphere. Dell is a close second with their “we don’t beleive in using standard components” philosophy that results in ordinary power connectors and fans being replaced with junk that only works on Dells.

  19. Metulj Says:

    “Switch to OpenOffice, it’s a lot nicer, more stable, and completely capable of saving into word formats.”

    Actually, it’s not me that keeps me on MS Office, it’s people I write for. We use “track changes” and in OO that function doesn’t work well yet.

    As for the Unix side of things, I just can’t stand MS’s toy-like environment. It really is toy-like, a cheap toy to boot. MacOS is all geegaw and shiny, but when I need to drop to Xwindows or the prompt I know that I actually have things like “find” and “grep.” Vista has a new command line doesn’t it? How’s that?

  20. Jim W Says:

    Speaking as a former software industry guy (programmer for 8 years), it is somewhat well known that all of the technologies in windows and office were “mature” in the late 90s and that microsoft hasn’t really added anything substantial since then. This is why Linux/OpenOffice have really started to catch up. The open source movement (for obvious reason) doesn’t have the focus that a corporate software company does, but a mature product moots this shortcoming. Even a tortoise eventually passes a non-moving target and that is slowly happening now.

    I use firefox and thunderbird and am happier with them than with the competing microsoft products though I am still using an old copy of office 97 for word processing. I’ll eventually switch, but I haven’t found a strong need yet.

  21. gattsuru Says:

    Metulj
    Vista has a new command line doesn’t it? How’s that?

    Not much different. There are some under-the-hood and command changes, but the most visible stuff is just the change in how permissions are used (rather than XP or Linux/Unix systems, where all accounts are root or user dependent on their original setting, all processes run with the lowest necessary permissions unless you allow them to escalate).

    With the Command Prompt, you’ve got find (called tree) and grep (called find). Most commonly used Unix/Linux commands are in there. Command prompt’s less powerful — it’s based off MS-DOS, and thus doesn’t have the more network-oriented options — but even some of the advanced xcopy (slightly less powerful than cp) options are well beyond what I need in a systems administration viewpoint, nevermind what the average user is going to run into.

Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you.

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