Repair experts had found soon after the iPhone 13 release that swapping screens on the phone would break Face ID, unless a tiny control chip was removed from the original screen over to the new one.
The process is quite difficult and made one of the most common types of repairs for independent mobile repair outlets quite tedious.
Apple-authorized repair shops on the other hand have access to a restricted software tool that allows the iPhone to easily accept a new screen.
This is set to change now when the update rolls out, The Verge reports. It will allow screen replacements on the iPhone 13 without requiring a transfer of the microcontroller.
iFixit had earlier noted that removing the microcontroller was so difficult that it would’ve required a microscope. It would have put independent repair shops in a tough spot, but the new update means that they can take a sigh of relief.
It is unclear when the update will be rolling out at the moment – Apple hasn’t announced any release date for it yet.
Regardless, the entire episode does raise questions on why the Face ID function broke in the first place, if it could easily be avoided through something as simple as a tweak in software.
Apple has been known to progressively restrict repairability on the iPhones, and the move does come as a surprise. The most plausible explanation for it could be the US government’s push to strengthen ‘right to repair’ rules.