The Error 53 issue bricking iPhones that get replacement Touch ID sensors has the Internet up in arms, and that can mean only one thing: it's lawsuit time. The law firm of PVCA hasn't filed a case against Apple yet, but is looking for iPhone owners ready to sign up for a class action lawsuit.
Apple facing potential lawsuit over Error 53
iPhone 6 and 6 Plus owners who get new Home buttons with Touch ID support are encountering Error 53 if the parts aren't properly installed and paired with the rest of the device. Apple says it's a security feature to prevent anyone from bypassing the built-in personal data and privacy safeguards. That's not, however, how PVCA see it. The law firm's website says,
Think of it this way: Let’s say you bought a car, and had your alternator replaced by a local mechanic. Under Apple’s strategy, your car would no longer start because you didn’t bring it to an official dealership. They intentionally disable your car because you tried to fix it yourself.
Applying PVCA's alternator analogy to Apple's argument, if a local mechanic fails to correctly install a new alternator, your car will stop working. That's not an intentional act by the car maker; it's what happens when key parts aren't installed properly.
The tools necessary for pairing the Touch ID sensor with an iPhone aren't available to independent repair shops, and that's where the real problem lies. Unless they have access to the same tools as Apple's authorized repair centers, they can't successfully replace Touch ID-enabled Home buttons, or even the cable that connects the Touch ID sensor to your iPhone.
The issue extends beyond after market parts to components swapped from other iPhones, too. iFixit co-founder Kyle Wiens said in a blog post, "Error 53 isn’t necessarily a problem of third-party parts. It can happen with new OEM parts out of a different iPhone. It’s a matter of synchronization—not third-party parts."
PVCA says Error 53 violates U.S. consumer protection laws, and now it's looking for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus owners who encountered the phone-killing issue. It's a safe bet the law firm will find the people it needs to move forward and file a case, and it's a safe bet Apple is already working on its legal defense.
[Some image elements courtesy Shutterstock]