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#191503 6-Feb-2016 11:55
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Error "53" they call it.  

 

I don't put much faith in Stuff reporting but this one caught my eye.  Apple are allegedly bricking phones that have repairs done by unauthorized agents.  Surely a step too far?   

 

http://www.stuff.co.nz/technology/76645654/fury-over-iphone-error-53-that-leaves-phones-almost-worthlesss

 

 

 

 

 

 





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  #1486432 6-Feb-2016 12:00
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It does seem like overkill; it's one thing to disable the "fingerprint" component (therefore making it no less secure than my own iPhone with Touch ID disabled) and quite another to "brick" the entire phone. From what I've read, even re-replacing the third-party component with an official Apple one doesn't fix the issue (although that could be misinformation) so it does seem incredibly heavy-handed.

 

If you'd had the repair done in NZ then I wonder whether you could take it back under the CGA as unfit for purpose. That's not really fair on the repairer though!


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  #1486452 6-Feb-2016 13:29
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Sideface


 
 
 
 


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  #1486455 6-Feb-2016 13:40
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Apple: 'Error 53' is not a bug, it's a feature
http://www.zdnet.com/article/apple-error-53-is-not-a-bug-its-a-feature/

“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. If iOS finds a mismatch, the check fails and Touch ID, including for Apple Pay use, is disabled. This security measure is necessary to protect your device and prevent a fraudulent Touch ID sensor from being used. If a customer encounters Error 53, we encourage them to contact Apple Support.”

 

 





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  #1486458 6-Feb-2016 13:45
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I don't think this can be justified under any circumstances, but at the very least, it ought to be reversible if you later take it to an authorised repairer. If the phone is permanently bricked, that is inexcusable. 

 

 





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  #1486480 6-Feb-2016 14:36
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From a security perspective it seams reasonable. Maybe the unauthorized repairers need to do a better job, and if they cant do it properly then dont.


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  #1486498 6-Feb-2016 15:13
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Dairyxox:

 

From a security perspective it seams reasonable. Maybe the unauthorized repairers need to do a better job, and if they cant do it properly then dont.

 

 

It is not reasonable to brick the whole phone -- as above, simply disable touch ID functionality is sufficient. 

 

 

 

 


 
 
 
 


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  #1486507 6-Feb-2016 15:39
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surfisup1000:

 

Dairyxox:

 

From a security perspective it seams reasonable. Maybe the unauthorized repairers need to do a better job, and if they cant do it properly then dont.

 

 

It is not reasonable to brick the whole phone -- as above, simply disable touch ID functionality is sufficient. 

 

 

Sorry yes I agree bricking the phone is unreasonable. It seems that mostly hypebole though. In the articles the Apple rep only says it stops touch ID and Apple pay. Which is what most of the cases seem to be.


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  #1486509 6-Feb-2016 15:57
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Dairyxox:

 

From a security perspective it seams reasonable. Maybe the unauthorized repairers need to do a better job, and if they cant do it properly then dont.

 

 

How does that make any sense? they did a perfect job of repairing it according to the story - the phone was working fine after the repair until upgraded to iOS9 which added the check and the bricking...





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  #1486532 6-Feb-2016 16:38
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Yep, just upgraded my 5 to a 6 and nearly bought one on TM with that "error 53" but luckily googled and it seems there is no fix known, but it activates at the next update (even if you already had an earlier version of iOS 9) as the touch is hardware coded to match the main board. Only Apple Repairers can overcome this issue, but it only happens when changing the touch, so not very common as yet?

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  #1486533 6-Feb-2016 16:40
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If apple have details on the serials of the touch ID board that is assigned to each main board, then only apple can do the repair.

 

I hope they do this to screens etc as well, to destroy the market for stolen iphones as sources of parts. For all we know apple have details of those stolen phones parts and could use that as a brick list. I would also fully support that.





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  #1486549 6-Feb-2016 16:55
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Wait a minute... So you could buy what looks like a working phone from TM or somewhere and next update, wham!?

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  #1486553 6-Feb-2016 17:00
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JayADee: Wait a minute... So you could buy what looks like a working phone from TM or somewhere and next update, wham!?

 

Yes that is correct, really the same with anything second hand though to be honest.

 

I do agree with Rich though, if they are going after counterfeit sensors (and you know, they do have a good point here with Apple Pay & other apps using TouchID as a bypass to normal authentication), and those from stolen devices, who knows, maybe the screens will be the next target.

 

For those losing data as a result of the update, well the question is obvious, you didn't back up your phone before you updated?  It's not like they make it overly complicated to backup, simpler than Android for sure...


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  #1486594 6-Feb-2016 17:55
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Also to be fair Apple are saying if you're affected to call their service centre, so reading between the lines they can fix the issue, so nobody has to be left with a brick.

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  #1486598 6-Feb-2016 18:05
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sidefx:

 

Dairyxox:

 

 

 

From a security perspective it seams reasonable. Maybe the unauthorized repairers need to do a better job, and if they cant do it properly then dont.

 

 

 

 

 

 

How does that make any sense? they did a perfect job of repairing it according to the story - the phone was working fine after the repair until upgraded to iOS9 which added the check and the bricking...

 



What is working properly though?, a lot of people dont use Touch ID or Apple Pay, so it might have appeared to be working properly. It's like if someone swaps a main board with a TPM chip that is not correctly activated in the software. It's not really fixed properly.


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