iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus
The iPhone 6S and the IPhone 6S Plus showcased at the Sept. 9 2015 launch event. Image via The Verge (Twitter)

Apple has admitted what a Chinese consumer protection group reported a week ago: various iPhone 6s units are indeed shutting down unexpectedly. The tech giant confirmed the issue but said that the problem is only limited to a number of handsets within a short serial number range. Affected iPhone 6s models are those that were manufactured from September to October 2015.

Apple insists that this is not a safety issue. The company pushes for the problem to be resolved via a battery replacement program, which the company is currently offering for free. Apple has not disclosed the official number of affected iPhone 6s units and in which regions.

According to PCWorld, Apple was asked by the China Consumers Association to look into the core problem that has caused the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s models to automatically shut down. The sudden shutdowns are believed to occur once the battery level drops to about 60 or 50 percent.

Australian owners of the affected Apple smartphones can go to the nearest Apple Retail Store or Apple Authorized Service Provider to have their device serial number checked to confirm if the unit is eligible for a free battery replacement. Apple’s wireless carrier partners are not involved with the battery replacement program.

Owners of the affected Apple handsets can start the battery replacement process by backing up their data to iCloud or iTunes, turning off the “Find My iPhone” feature and erasing all data and settings.

For more information on how to back up data using iCloud or iTunes, click here. For more information on how to remove a device from “Find My iPhone,” click here. To erase data and settings, go to Settings > General > Reset > Erase all Content and Settings.

Apple noted that iPhone 6s units with any kind of damage should have it fixed before proceeding with the battery replacement.

“If your iPhone 6s has any damage such as a cracked screen which impairs the replacement of the battery, that issue will need to be resolved prior to the battery replacement. In some cases, there may be a cost associated with the repair,” announced Apple.

The company also said that Apple iPhone 6s owners who believe that their handsets were affected by the problem but have already paid to replace the batteries would be able to get a refund.