iPhone 13 screen repairs will break key feature unless done by Apple

New info has just surfaced regarding the iPhone 13, which seems to suggest that Apple is stopping the use of Face ID on devices with a third-party screen replacement.

This also extends to display components that originate from an original equipment manufacturer (OEM), which seems brutal considering that screens crack and break all the time.

Let’s be clear: Apple has never been a fan of third-party repair operations, even going so far as to use proprietary screws all the way back in 2011 to deter the practice. But this latest bit of news appears to be an escalation in Apple countering the operation, now seemingly killing Face ID on your device if the display is swapped.

Phone Repair Guru posted the findings in a video, spotted via MacRumors, showing displays on two iPhone 13 phones being swapped. As can be seen from the video, despite the displays being original Apple components, the iPhone 13’s Face ID feature will not work if the phone’s display is replaced. There doesn’t appear to be a workaround, either: Face ID couldn’t be re-activated, which suggests that the display on the iPhone 13 lineup is serial-locked to the device.

If this decision feels like it’s erring on the tyrannical side, then we’d be inclined to agree. Even with Apple’s track record of trying to keep its customers away from third-party repair shops, it does seem overkill to stop one of the best iPhone’s integral authentication features.

Hopefully, other speculation around the Face ID issue is closer to the truth. Rumor has it that it’s a bug that Apple support plans to fix in a future iOS release, so we’re optimistic that it’s just a temporary problem, as opposed to a longer-term attack on third-party screen repairs. Fingers-crossed.

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