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News ▶ Apple
You're repairing it wrong

"Error 53" bricks iPhones not officially repaired

There's no warning and no fix for users who get the "Error 53" message. This is caused by Apples latest iOS update detecting the handset has been repaired by someone other than Apple.

Users who have had the home button repaired, which contains the fingerprint recognition system, by a "non-official" repair shop, or who have been unlucky enough to get it damaged but still be able to use the phone, are reporting this after the update. 

Reports have surfaced of  the phone working perfectly for weeks, even months before this update, so users are certain it was caused by a recent change by Apple.

Apple repair policy criticized

An Apple spokesperson said: “We take customer security very seriously and Error 53 is the result of security checks designed to protect our customers. iOS checks that the Touch ID sensor in your iPhone or iPad correctly matches your device’s other components."

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Users affected are fuming at Apples "arrogance". Over at Boing Boing, one said:

"If they included a warning in the package ‘tamper resistance’ feature that works by non-Apple-authorised repair services may be mistaken for tampering attempts, and lead to the phone being disabled’, then it would be purely a feature ... By concealing the feature prior to sales, and only even revealing it after being repeatedly pressured over it, Apple turned what could have been a feature into a landmine.”

Users find when they contact Apple support that their warranty has been voided by the third-party repair, and are offered no recompense or option other than to again pay full price for a replacement.

However, users are experiencing the infamous error 53 without having had any third party repairs undertaken. Apples' policy in this case is unclear.