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Rumor: Faulty flash memory in select iPhone 6 & 6 Plus units prompts Apple to make switch [u]

Apparent memory issues found in a select number of iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus units are rumored to have prompted Apple to change to a different type of NAND flash technology when manufacturing new units moving forward [update: rumors were incorrect].



A number of users reached out to AppleInsider weeks ago to highlight the issues, which appeared to mostly affect iPhone 6 Plus users with exceptionally large application libraries. Specifically, the 128-gigabyte iPhone 6 Plus appears to be the most affected model.

[Update: a source close to Apple has clarified that user-reported issues with large capacity iPhone 6 models are very rare, and that the company does not have any plans to recall the phones due to "faulty hardware," and that there is not a defect in the Anobit components those models use. The source of the rumor is a minor publication in Korea that is said to have close ties to Samsung.

Users experiencing problems should report issues to AppleCare, but shouldn't be concerned about the rumors of "faulty hardware." The issue is likely to be addressed in a future iOS update, but AppleInsider could not determine a specific schedule for when the issue might be addressed.]

Those complaints align with new details published Friday by Business Korea, which alleges that the defects also plague some 64-gigabyte iPhone 6 models. The issue is said to be related to the use of triple-level cell NAND flash memory built by Anobit, a company that Apple acquired in 2011.

While triple-level cell NAND can store more data in a smaller space, it's also slower than other NAND flash technologies. Given the apparent issues with the TLC NAND used in some iPhone models, Apple is rumored to have switched to multi-level cell NAND flash in the 64-gigabyte iPhone 6 and 128-gigabyte iPhone 6 Plus.

In addition, Friday's report suggested that Apple's forthcoming iOS 8.1.1 update will also help address the boot issues that have affected some iPhone 6 Plus users.

Some forum members and AppleInsider readers have taken their problematic iPhone 6 Plus in to an Apple Store for assessment. In some cases, Geniuses exchange the non-functional unit, while others have been told to hold on to their phone as their repair ticket escalates up the tech support chain of command. Few have reported success with new iPhone 6 Plus replacements.