Apple now says cheaper iPhone replacement battery available immediately

Discounted replacement batteries for iPhones will be available now, Apple Inc. said Saturday, rather than beginning in late January, as initially announced two days ago.

A company spokeswoman cautioned that initial supplies of some replacement batteries may be limited.

Apple AAPL, -1.08%   on Thursday said it would offer $29 replacement batteries for an iPhone 6 or later model, rather than the usual $79 for a phone not under warranty, following an uproar over its disclosure a week earlier that it has slowed down iPhones with older batteries.

Many critics have said that Apple’s admission gives credence to long-held conspiracy theories that the company slows down older smartphones to push consumers toward buying newer models.

“We expected to need more time to be ready, but we are happy to offer our customers the lower pricing right away,” spokeswoman Trudy Muller said on Saturday.

The company last week also said it would push out an update to its iOS mobile operating system “with new features that give users more visibility into the health of their iPhone’s battery, so they can see for themselves if its condition is affecting performance.”

Apple also added a new support page called “iPhone battery and performance” to explain the issue and offer tips.

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