While they aren't exploding like a certain other smartphone, Apple's iPhone 6s and 6 Pluses have come down with what iFixit calls Touch Disease. As PC World reports, Touch Disease manifests as a flickering gray bar and nonfunctional touchscreen. Phones get Touch Disease "after being dropped multiple times on a hard surface and then incurring further stress on the device," according to Apple, which is offering to fix the problem—in iPhone 6 Pluses anyway—for $149. But a source at Apple Genius tells iFixit they aren't actually repairing the broken phones, just replacing them with refurbished ones. And iFixit notes that's "a lot of money for [a] device swap."
Furthermore, iFixit claims the problem isn't just from clumsy phone owners—though that's certainly part of it—but an inherent flaw with the way the phones are designed and manufactured. iPhone 6s and 6 Pluses are so wide and thin that stress placed on them can cause certain microchips to lose their connections with the motherboard. iFixit says Touch Disease has been found in phones that haven't been dropped or that are ensconced in protective cases. Lawyers proposed a class-action lawsuit against Apple in relation to Touch Disease back in August, and litigation is still working its way through the system. (Read more iPhone stories.)