Apple Vice President Tara Bunch announced that the changes would soon roll out across the U.S. then later across the world. The changes are being referred to under the "One Apple" brand; however, its unclear if the term is for internal use only.
"The biggest announcement, was the way repairs for iPhones will be handled soon," the person, who asked not to be identified due to their active status as an Apple employee, told AppleInsider. "The way it is now, if almost anything is wrong with an iPhone, iPod, or iPad, the entire device is exchanged for a like-new re manufactured (sic) device, whether brought into an apple store or sent in for mail in repair. Now we are starting to actually repair the products and return the same device to the customer."
Apple Stores are currently equipped to replace speakers, receivers, home buttons, vibrator motors and batteries. However, come June they will reportedly be able to replace displays and in July they will repair issues with cameras, sleep/wake buttons, and logic boards. Employees will gain access to advanced diagnostic tools that can remotely assess hardware problems and send the data directly to technicians for quicker turnaround times. Bunch reportedly said Apple will save nearly $1 billion per year by performing repairs in-store.
Another huge change is that the paid AppleCare service will become a subscription based purchase attached to a person rather than a device. A subscriber will get in-store training and each of their devices will be covered under the warranty. The new service could also include "exclusive" 24/7 support; although, that has not been confirmed yet. The full set of features and pricing hasn't been finalized.
Apple is also said to be updating the free warranty coverage you get with a purchase to a new system that offers phone support for a least a year, maybe even two years in the future. Currently, the company only offers 90 days of free telephone support.
Additionally, Apple is reportedly looking to increase the size of its home advisor team currently made up of over 4,200 technical advisors that work from home instead of an office. This saves overhead costs and makes it easier for Apple to find qualified employees.
Finally, Apple is set to improve its online support by revamping its support webpages, adding more videos and tutorials, and offering assistance over iMessage.