iOS 15.2 will help you spot third-party iPhone parts

Apple’s seeming about-face on repairability will soon help you spot less-than-honest iPhone repair shops and part sellers. As Gizmodo notes, Apple has revealed iOS 15.2’s settings will include a “parts and service history” section (under General > About) that indicates not only whether the battery, camera and display have been replaced, but will indicate whether or not they’re officially sanctioned Apple parts. If a component is listed as an “unknown part,” it’s either unofficial, an already-used part from another iPhone or malfunctioning.

Just how much you’ll learn depends on your iPhone model. Anyone using an iPhone XR, XS or second-generation iPhone SE can only tell if the battery has been replaced. You’ll need an iPhone 11 or newer to also find out if there’s a display swap, and an iPhone 12 or later to know if the camera has been replaced. Apple stressed that these alerts won’t prevent you from using your device — you’re fine if you’re comfortable using unofficial parts and losing warranty coverage.

iOS 15.2 currently exists as a release candidate for developers, suggesting the finished version will be available relatively soon. It’s not yet clear if iPad owners will see a corresponding part history feature at some point.

The “unknown part” label might not thrill advocates for third-party component options. Apple clearly wants you to use official parts, and that means either taking it in for authorized service or (in 2022) buying parts from Apple. This might help you catch shops lying about the quality of their parts, though, and could be useful if you repair an iPhone yourself and want to be sure your fixes went smoothly.

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