Apple to replace broken iPhone 5 screens in-store, not with a refurbished model?

There is nothing more frustrating than dropping your precious iPhone, picking it up, and then finding the darn thing completely cracked. Apple will happily replace a cracked iPhone 4S with a refurbished one, as long as you are signed up for the $99 Apple Care program.

However, a new phone brings new changes. The folks at iMore, who have been on-key with Apple news in the past, report that broken iPhone 5 displays will physically be replaced in-store and no longer will customers be handed a refurbished device. The report added that the equipment to swap screens has begun popping up in retail stores:

iMore has learned from sources within Apple retail that broken iPhone 5 displays may soon be getting replaced in-store. This would be a change from Apple’s current iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 practice, which consisted of swapping the entire iPhone out for a new or refurbished one. Sources within Apple retail have told us that equipment used to remove the screens has started appearing in their stores.

The iPhone 5’s new unibody design makes the front panel easily replaceable. Apple could do similar with the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS until the redesigned body for iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S made it much more difficult.

Want to see the innards of the iPhone 5? Check out this teardown.

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