tech2 News StaffAug 24, 2016 10:21:07 IST
Apple is not acknowledging an issue that stops iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus touchscreens from functioning. Although Apple improved the structural integrity of the phones, the slim form factor of the phones and the large surface area still leads to the touch screen controllers in the devices losing contact with the logic board. Smartphone repair companies are getting a constant stream of iPhones suffering with the "Touch Disease" according to a blog post by repair experts iFixit.
Apple owners experiencing the problem first notice a flickering grey bar on the top of the phone. The touch input on the device deteriorates over time. The issue affects the larger iPhone 6 Plus more than the iPhone 6. Twisting the phone or pressing the screen temporarily solves the problem, but makes it worse later on. The two touch screen controllers in the devices are connected to the logic board with solder balls. The amount of contact between the touch screen controllers and the logic board reduces over time, leading to touch that gets increasingly erratic, and eventually stops working altogether.
Other iPhone models do not suffer from this problem because of a rigid EMI shield. The iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus have a flexible EMI shield. Repair shops are rigging a metal casing to improve the structural integrity, and prevent the problem from recurring. Another option to prevent the problem from happening again after the device drops or bends slightly, is to replace the lead free solder balls that connect the touch screen controllers to the logic board with solder balls that do contain lead.
Customers who take the devices to Apple for repairs are being advised to buy new phones because Apple does not acknowledge the issue. Microsoldering experts can fix the problem, but these repairs are not authorised by Apple and void the warranty. Replacing the phone itself or the logic board are costly ways of permanently fixing the problem. Replacing the touch screen controllers is the cheapest way to fix the problem. In the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s Plus, the touchscreen controllers are moved from the logic board to the display assembly, which does not cause the problem.
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