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Apple working on device abuse detection technology

post #1 of 61
Thread Starter 
Apple has investigated a system where portable devices like iPods and iPhones would detect and store into memory "consumer abuse events" such as exposure to extreme cold, heat or moisture in void of warranty, a new patent application reveals.

The invention, entitled "Consumer Abuse Detection System and Method," was discovered by AppleInsider in a new patent application disclosure this week. Apple originally filed for the patent on Feb. 1, 2008. The concept aims to detect issues, like a dropped iPhone, that might void the warranty on the device.

Apple already includes liquid submersion indicators in its MacBook Pros, iPhones and iPods. They irreversibly change color once they come in contact with a liquid, thereby offering the company's retail store staff and authorized repair specialists an easy way to determine if a customer caused damage to their product with liquids -- incidents that aren't covered under Apple's standard warranties. Rather than the physical indicator, the new system would save information of damage digitally into memory.

"The system may include an interface by which a diagnostic device may access the memory to analyze the records and determine whether a consumer abuse event occurred, when the event occurred, and, in some embodiments, what type of abuse event occurred," the patent reads. "By providing the capability to quickly and easily detect whether consumer abuse occurred in an electronic device, a vendor or manufacturer diagnosing a returned product may be able to better determine whether or not to initiate a product return under a warranty policy."

In addition to warranty protection, the abuse detection circuitry could be used to disable the electronic device if an issue is detected, potentially reducing the risk of damage to the device. The system would aim protect a myriad of parts on devices, including the screen, processor, memory, and potentially inserted devices like SD or CompactFlash cards.

The system would recognize a number of incident types, with liquid and thermal sensors detecting the elements, a shock sensor for drops, and a continuity sensor to detect tampering with the device. Apple suggests that such a system could save money for product vendors and manufacturers who receive warranty returns on products that have been abused.

"A problem arises when a device has failed due to consumer abuse which may not be readily apparent upon a cursory inspection, but a consumer attempts to return the device for repair or replacement under the warranty," the patent reads. "Often, particularly at a point of sale, personnel receiving the returned device may be unqualified or untrained to determine whether or not a device has failed due to manufacturing defects or due to consumer abuse."

It continues: "Thus, personnel at the point of sale may often times exchange the returned product with a working replacement product regardless of the cause of failure in order to avoid potential conflicts with the customer. As a result, it is not uncommon for consumers to receive replacement products or repair services on abused products not covered under the terms of a warranty. Such erroneous replacements or repairs may be costly to the vendor and/or manufacturer of the product."



post #2 of 61
Dang - stop abusing your Macs and learn to love them more.
post #3 of 61
hahahahaha love it! my iPhone would be all "he didn't give me the same attention when he first got me, it's like we have nothing in common any more".
post #4 of 61
I went into an Apple store on Saturday to see about a crack in my iPhone near the bottom port. After running a quick test on it, they told me they couldn't do anything because my moisture sensor had been activated. I was told that both the warranty and Applecare were voided by this. Since I haven't submerged my phone, spilled a drink on it, or done any of the other things I was told would activate the sensor I question how well it works, but the Apple genius insisted the system didn't make mistakes.
post #5 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by jclampet View Post

I went into an Apple store on Saturday to see about a crack in my iPhone near the bottom port. After running a quick test on it, they told me they couldn't do anything because my moisture sensor had been activated. I was told that both the warranty and Applecare were voided by this. Since I haven't submerged my phone, spilled a drink on it, or done any of the other things I was told would activate the sensor I question how well it works, but the Apple genius insisted the system didn't make mistakes.

Did you store it in your pants pocket after using the barthroom?
post #6 of 61
How is this different than Dallas Semi's iButtons, aside from the fact that it is integrated into the product. The iButtons had temperature, liquid, and shock detection for anything from batteries to perishables. I think the iButtons go back 12 years at least.

I appreciate that a manufacturer needs to be able to protect themselves from rampant abuse, but this type of thing can easily be abused. Consumer Electronics really isn't the right place for it.
post #7 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by jclampet View Post

I went into an Apple store on Saturday to see about a crack in my iPhone near the bottom port. After running a quick test on it, they told me they couldn't do anything because my moisture sensor had been activated. I was told that both the warranty and Applecare were voided by this. Since I haven't submerged my phone, spilled a drink on it, or done any of the other things I was told would activate the sensor I question how well it works, but the Apple genius insisted the system didn't make mistakes.

The water detection systems in devices today do make mistakes though and they definitely are not fullproof. Same thing happened to me (but not with something as expensive as an ipod, sorry to hear that) but it was with a RAZR phone. The ONLY time the thing got near moisture is when it was in the bathroom with my while I took a shower and there was steam.

I don't take very hot showers, and I never picked the phone up and saw beeds of water on it or anything, but they insisted the water detector sticker had turned pink, indicating, as they called it, COMPLETE SUBMERSION.

Isn't there some kind of insurance you can buy so you can just get a replacement no matter what for ipods and iphones? Now that I'm with Sprint and have a far more expensive phone than the razr, I pay $7 a month to get a replacement if anything should happen, and it means ANYTHING. Well, maybe not anything. I don't know if "phone dropped in lava" is covered, but ether way just saying the phone was stolen will cover it lol.
post #8 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by jclampet View Post

They already use this

The patent is much more elaborate. I imagine that the sensors would be able to report back to the device’s OS, like S.M.A.R.T. for hard drives, which really aren’t that smart to begin with, but at least you can open Disk Utility and see if your drive is verified. This kind of thing could help phone-based tech support get a better handle on the what your problem is when, “the whatchamacallit isn’t working when I touch that one thingy.” isn’t quite as helpful as the caller thinks.

Quote:
I went into an Apple store on Saturday to see about a crack in my iPhone near the bottom port. After running a quick test on it, they told me they couldn't do anything because my moisture sensor had been activated. I was told that both the warranty and Applecare were voided by this. Since I haven't submerged my phone, spilled a drink on it, or done any of the other things I was told would activate the sensor I question how well it works, but the Apple genius insisted the system didn't make mistakes.

Call AppleCare or go to a different store. The Geniuses make mistakes and the moisture sensors are known to be extra sensitive. You can Google others having the same issue, perhaps you can find a resolution that matched your particular case and how you can get it resolved satisfactorily.
post #9 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by jclampet View Post

I went into an Apple store on Saturday to see about a crack in my iPhone near the bottom port. After running a quick test on it, they told me they couldn't do anything because my moisture sensor had been activated. I was told that both the warranty and Applecare were voided by this. Since I haven't submerged my phone, spilled a drink on it, or done any of the other things I was told would activate the sensor I question how well it works, but the Apple genius insisted the system didn't make mistakes.

Go back and tell them that you are not claiming on the warranty for anything caused by water damage but for a manufacturing fault, i.e. a cracked case. They cannot disown liability for something that is NOT caused by water damage.
post #10 of 61
I'm all for preventing people abusing the system. We all pay more as a result of insurance fraud, warranty abuse, etc., but this goes too much the other way, allowing the companies to abuse the warranty. A drop of rain gets to the water sensor, so Apple says the warranty has been made void, even though the problem is completely unrelated.

If companies are going to go down this route, the consumer need extra protection from abuse, e.g. a sensor going off only voids that part of the warranty for a limited time, long enough to ensure that the damage hasn't been done by that accident.
post #11 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by parky View Post

Go back and tell them that you are not claiming on the warranty for anything caused by water damage but for a manufacturing fault, i.e. a cracked case. They cannot disown liability for something that is NOT caused by water damage.

Yes they can. Once the sensor has changed color it voids all warranty claims whether or not they are Apple's fault. So, if your phone is malfunctioning and you've yet to bring it in for a Genius Bar appointment(never EVER try to get help without one), DO NOT GET IT WET OR LEAVE IT WHERE MOISTURE MAY CHANGE THE SENSOR! The Genius will have to void your warranty as it is not his job or worth losing his job to hand out free phones to those of us that can't understand that moisture+iPhones = VERY VERY BAD!
post #12 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by jclampet View Post

I went into an Apple store on Saturday to see about a crack in my iPhone near the bottom port. After running a quick test on it, they told me they couldn't do anything because my moisture sensor had been activated. I was told that both the warranty and Applecare were voided by this. Since I haven't submerged my phone, spilled a drink on it, or done any of the other things I was told would activate the sensor I question how well it works, but the Apple genius insisted the system didn't make mistakes.

I had a friend that lost his new iPod nano (1st gen) due to placing it near his bedside, which was right above a humidifier. So it's not that far fetched that you can damage electronics due to condensation (i.e. without submerging it).
post #13 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logisticaldron View Post

The patent is much more elaborate. I imagine that the sensors would be able to report back to the device’s OS, like S.M.A.R.T. for hard drives, which really aren’t that smart to begin with, but at least you can open Disk Utility and see if your drive is verified. This kind of thing could help phone-based tech support get a better handle on the what your problem is when, “the whatchamacallit isn’t working when I touch that one thingy.” isn’t quite as helpful as the caller thinks.



Call AppleCare or go to a different store. The Geniuses make mistakes and the moisture sensors are known to be extra sensitive. You can Google others having the same issue, perhaps you can find a resolution that matched your particular case and how you can get it resolved satisfactorily.

I think it's a good idea. The posters on this forum may be upstanding citizens, but I see a lot of chancers trying always to get something for free or get over on businesses by taking advantage of good customer service policies. Hurts us all when this happens.

FYI: You mentioned S.M.A.R.T. SmartReporter is a great little free utility for Apple computers that sits up in the menu bar (green HD icon) and when something starts going bad it turns red. Saved me once, turned red and warned before HD died. http://www.corecode.at/smartreporter/
post #14 of 61
Although its a good thing for a company to make sure they aren't loosing money by people's stupidity when it comes to warranty claims, more "user abuse" sensors in the devices worries me. What if the sensitivity is set too high? What if I'm on the bus, the bus hits a curb (it happens) which jostles everyone including a iPod (sudden movement, not it banging against something), but the iPod sensor is tripped even if the device wasn't damaged at all, but then the battery explodes later due to manufacturing fault? Nope, you'd be out of luck. What if you live in a place where it is pretty humid, and you left your iPhone near an air vent. Condensation grows on the headphone part and turns the water sensor red. What if you are at work, and while holding your iPhone you reach for the door knob and get a little shock from the built up static electricity. What if your iPhone was eaten by a bear? What if your iPod's dock connector wasn't built right, and shorts out every so often tripping an "electric shock" sensor? There's plenty of ways that in the normal course of the day, your device may go through something that normally wouldn't go against warranty, but now they have an excuse if something does go wrong that has nothing to do with the tripped sensor, for Apple to tell you that you are SOL. Minus the bear. If you get your device eaten by a bear... make sure you are faster than your device when running.

I understand they are trying to weed out the people who bring in their devices that have obviously been abused and trying to get a new one, but this seems a little far. I hope it does not come to fruition. Already the water sensors are bad enough.

If Apple made dependable and rugged products (which I've not seen as of late), then there would be no real need for these sensors, right? I guess thin does come with a price.

(On a related note, my three month old iPod touch screen is starting to come up. Its as if a screw or glue or something didn't hold right. I was told "is within specifications". Yeah, right, when I can see the insides, that's not within specifications! Since the Intel switch, I'm now 4/4 in terms of faulty products from Apple. I bet if I try to bring back the iPod, they'll say its my fault somehow when I take good care of it. No more products from Apple for me.)
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post #15 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by parky View Post

Go back and tell them that you are not claiming on the warranty for anything caused by water damage but for a manufacturing fault, i.e. a cracked case.

Maybe go back and tell them you are filing a warranty claim for a cracked case and faulty water sensors. Bring along a sworn affidavit that the device has never been submerged or subject to any other condition Apple says can activate them. At the very least the confusion you generate may be entertaining.
post #16 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by jclampet View Post

I went into an Apple store on Saturday to see about a crack in my iPhone near the bottom port. After running a quick test on it, they told me they couldn't do anything because my moisture sensor had been activated. I was told that both the warranty and Applecare were voided by this. Since I haven't submerged my phone, spilled a drink on it, or done any of the other things I was told would activate the sensor I question how well it works, but the Apple genius insisted the system didn't make mistakes.

I too had this happen with my iPod classic (bought in October '08). Same circumstances it was either carried in my purse (in a sleeve) or sitting next to my computer 100% of the time. I had lost 3 rastor lines on my screen. Verdict?
"Water damaged". R-I-G-H-T.....nice and convenient.
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post #17 of 61
Go back and ask to see the manager. Also make sure you get the extended warranty so if the trouble gets worse you are covered.

I would not be surprised if carrying an iPhone in your pocket would generate enough humidity to activate the sensor.

If Apple implement such electronic systems then the system can have a warning system if dangerous situations are being experienced. This can train the owner on how to take better care of the product.

There will be bound to be a lawsuit over the moisture sensor. If a lawyer demonstrates that the sensor is activated in humid climates then there will be trouble.
post #18 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Maybe go back and tell them you are filing a warranty claim for a cracked case and faulty water sensors. Bring along a sworn affidavit that the device has never been submerged or subject to any other condition Apple says can activate them. At the very least the confusion you generate may be entertaining.

Good suggestion. This always works for me in this sort of situation. Very calmly, I say, "I know you get a lot of people taking advantage of your great customer service policy, but I can assure 'I did not get it wet.' I'm not lying." When you take it down to the level where the manage by disagreeing with you is essentially calling you a liar. They always give in. Especially if you do it politely.

Of course, my matinee idol good looks helps, too!
post #19 of 61
BTW I once had a new Mac where the Ethernet card was faulty. Apple care swore that nothing was wrong for a month until they realized that more complaints came in. In the end there was a recall and the card was replaced.

Sometimes you have to insist on service.
post #20 of 61
It is always wise to protect your products from unnecessary abuse and fraudulent warranty claims. I know of people who open their apple products and physically damage something inside to get it replaced because they don't want a scratch on their screen or something. SInce that doesn't trip the water sensor, the device can be replaced under warranty. That is a scenario where abuse has to be curtailed. I can totally understand that part of the equation. However there are things out of our control that can also trip a sensor of some sort and we get punished for something we didn't do? Condensation can easily trip the iPhone's water sensor and immediately void your warranty. They are going too far in their methods to control warranty. While it is wise to protect your products, it is not wise to punish customers and void all warranties when things happen out of our control.
post #21 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by DogGone View Post

There will be bound to be a lawsuit over the moisture sensor. If a lawyer demonstrates that the sensor is activated in humid climates then there will be trouble.

Apple does list acceptable humidity, temperature and altitudes for their devices. That said, if they sell the item in areas that are outside those norms then they could be considered liable. I usually dont agree with the lawsuits against Apple, but this is one that seems like it has a lot merit from what Ive read about their moisture sensors.
post #22 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by chronster View Post

The water detection systems in devices today do make mistakes though and they definitely are not fullproof. Same thing happened to me (but not with something as expensive as an ipod, sorry to hear that) but it was with a RAZR phone. The ONLY time the thing got near moisture is when it was in the bathroom with my while I took a shower and there was steam.

I don't take very hot showers, and I never picked the phone up and saw beeds of water on it or anything, but they insisted the water detector sticker had turned pink, indicating, as they called it, COMPLETE SUBMERSION. ...

Unfortunately, this is the detector doing exactly what it should. Leaving an electronic device in a steam filled room does equal "complete submersion."

I had a very similar thing happen to me back before mobile phones even existed. I had a Cannon AE-1 SLR camera that I used to take pictures with that had a bayonet mounted lens. I took off the lens for literally about 15 seconds or so on a misty day because I thought I wanted to change it, but then changed my mind. I did this under my coat and under the awning of the local Art Gallery. No water got on the camera, and it wasn't even really raining, just a fine foggy mist in the air.

The next time I went to use the camera a day or two later it cost me over a hundred bucks to have the circuit board replaced because a single tiny droplet of moisture got onto a single tiny sensor and corroded it. I learned the hard way ($100 bucks back then is like $500 today), that opening electronics in a foggy or misty environment is pretty much the same thing as dropping it in a sink full of water.
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post #23 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by christopher126 View Post

Good suggestion. This always works for me in this sort of situation. Very calmly, I say, "I know you get a lot of people taking advantage of your great customer service policy, but I can assure 'I did not get it wet.' I'm not lying." When you take it down to the level where the manage by disagreeing with you is essentially calling you a liar. They always give in. Especially if you do it politely.

Of course, my matinee idol good looks helps, too!

Working as a CSR for the evil at&t early in my career (1978) I can confirm that attitude and civility are huge factors in getting what you want from a company. Even though we were trained to realize that customers were angry at the company, not us personally, it was hard not to take some of crap personally. When you are called every name in the book, when you are called a moron, when you are sneered at, when you are cursed at, and all the rest, you do take it personally and are much less willing to go the extra mile for the customer doing this to you. Toughness + civility gets the desired results almost every time.

Based on some of the comments made in these forums about sale clerks, customer service reps, floor managers, etc. (calling them ignorant, morons, stupid, idiots, clueless) I can guess what kind of response these people get from those individuals when verbally assaulted and denigrated.
post #24 of 61
My only problem with this is that I'd become even more paranoid about the phone. I'd always wonder, "if I shake my phone, will it trip the shock sensor?"

And what if some bug/defect causes my phone to report all these problems that never happened?
post #25 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

It is always wise to protect your products from unnecessary abuse and fraudulent warranty claims. I know of people who open their apple products and physically damage something inside to get it replaced because they don't want a scratch on their screen or something. SInce that doesn't trip the water sensor, the device can be replaced under warranty. That is a scenario where abuse has to be curtailed. ....

I agree that if Apple is going to go down this route then they need to make sure the sensors all work as they should and that they are going to be nice about things and give some leeway on what is covered and what is not.

I also think that the kind of improvements to Apple devices that customers would really appreciate, is a sort of "hardening" of the product against these kinds of mishaps. More important, (and more useful to the consumer), than some of the recent upgrades to the electronics and software would be an iPhone you *could* drop in a toilet and not have an issue with it afterwards. The designers of electronic devices always seem to focus on design heuristics that have more to do with *their* profession, than they do with actual customer needs.

All that being said though, I know for a fact (given that I work in IT at a University), that "nice" people and "honest" people do damage computers and electronics all the time and yes, they do lie about it when they bring it in. Everyone who works in a place like mine has at least one customer who seems to have "bad mojo" when it comes to computers and seems to break them, or have issues with them over and over again despite no real cause ever being found. In these cases you just have to shrug and give them a new computer or fix the problem with the one they have if you can.

I used to ascribe this to just random chance or the fact that some people just have bad luck until I had a retired faculty member tell me one time that all the times he had brought in his various laptops and Pocket computers to me to be repaired, what had actually happened is he had dropped it. He was a nice Christian guy and since he was going to be shuffling off the mortal coil soon he wanted to be straight with me about the years and years of lies about dropping the laptops. He said he was just a clumsy butterfingers, and absent-minded kind of person but he lied because he couldn't face up to it being his fault. True story.
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post #26 of 61
Quote:
Apple already includes liquid submersion indicators in its MacBook Pros, iPhones and iPods. They irreversibly change color once they come in contact with a liquid, thereby offering the company's retail store staff and authorized repair specialists an easy way to determine if a customer caused damage to their product with liquids -- incidents that aren't covered under Apple's standard warranties. Rather than the physical indicator, the new system would save information of damage digitally into memory.


Why the hell does the keyboard and speakers on Apple's laptops allow liquids inside in the first place?

I mean really, this is 20 years now and things like this should have been solved long ago.

My lady ruined a brand new white MacBook spilling a drink, just a splash too, onto the keyboard which she immediatly flipped the computer over and removed the battery (like I told her if it should ever happen) and it still got wasted and the technician couldn't fix it.

She liked the snow like appearance of the white Macbook, but the glossy/glare prone reflective screen didn't make it practical for anyplace other than inside her darkened office unfortunatly.

So I installed Ubuntu on a matte 15" Lenvono, she is now happy, but I'm out $1000 for the Macbook.
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post #27 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

Working as a CSR for the evil at&t early in my career (1978) I can confirm that attitude and civility are huge factors in getting what you want from a company. Even though we were trained to realize that customers were angry at the company, not us personally, it was hard not to take some of crap personally. When you are called every name in the book, when you are called a moron, when you are sneered at, when you are cursed at, and all the rest, you do take it personally and are much less willing to go the extra mile for the customer doing this to you. Toughness + civility gets the desired results almost every time.

Based on some of the comments made in these forums about sale clerks, customer service reps, floor managers, etc. (calling them ignorant, morons, stupid, idiots, clueless) I can guess what kind of response these people get from those individuals when verbally assaulted and denigrated.

Thank you for posting this!

All too often I see people being horribly insensitive to the customer reps. when they come in with problems, and even when they don't have problems and things aren't going the customer's way. People should be polite when you are dealing with a customer rep who is there to help you (either to make purchase or to work out an issue that the customer has). Just because we are paying for a product or service, does not mean we have the right to treat the reps poorly.

I always am courteous and polite to those who help me, regardless of how I like or dislike a company, or how much money I am spending on that transaction. I treat them like people. Even when things don't go my way, I still treat them with respect. (Sometimes, I don't get the same in return, to which I usually ask for a manager.) I suggest others do the same. What harm is there in smiling even if you have problem?
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post #28 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

Why the hell does the keyboard and speakers on Apple's laptops allow liquids inside in the first place?

I mean really, this is 20 years now and things like this should have been solved long ago.

My lady ruined a brand new white MacBook spilling a drink, just a splash too, onto the keyboard which she immediatly flipped the computer over and removed the battery (like I told her if it should ever happen) and it still got wasted and the technician couldn't fix it.

She liked the snow like appearance of the white Macbook, but the glossy/glare prone reflective screen didn't make it practical for anyplace other than inside her darkened office unfortunatly.

So I installed Ubuntu on a matte 15" Lenvono, she is now happy, but I'm out $1000 for the Macbook.

LMAO you're ridiculous. You mean, "But YOU didn't like it." Get over it. Plenty of people are more than happy with the glossy screens.
post #29 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logisticaldron View Post

Apple does list acceptable humidity, temperature and altitudes for their devices. That said, if they sell the item in areas that are outside those norms then they could be considered liable. I usually dont agree with the lawsuits against Apple, but this is one that seems like it has a lot merit from what Ive read about their moisture sensors.

Sounds like you shouldn't take the iPhone to the beach for more than a weekend if that.
post #30 of 61
The fact is, these products should not be so fragile to begin with, and instead of spending time and money fixing the product to meet consumer needs, they'd rather patent new ways to avoid their responsibility (honoring warranty).

If any of you actually read those patent applications, and do some critical thinking, you quickly determine that a combination of so many detection factors will cause normal use of the iPhone to lead to a voided warranty.

This is the same as Audi, a few years ago, began including a memory point in the ECU that would save the top speed / RPM the car reaches. When the car goes in for service, Audi can refuse to honor any warranties based on the top speed / RPM of the vehicle.

2 different people I know of we're refused service on faulty vehicles because their cars (Audi A4's) had traveled at over 90 mph.
post #31 of 61
While I generally advocate these sort of things to reduce warranty abuse (which equals higher costs for the rest of us), the continuity sensor worries me the most. All it would take is one Apple technician or Apple-authorized service center to forget to "reset" it after a repair and you're SOL and completely unable to prove it wasn't your doing.

For example, too many times I've had to take old plastic MacBooks of friends and family to the Apple store for top-case replacement for discoloration or the chipping that always seems to happen towards the front of the computer. The "geniuses" are always very understanding of it (it seems to happen to every one of those models!) and take it back, replace the top case in about 5 minutes, and bring it back out for no charge. Who's to say that a technician won't ever forget to reset the continuity sensor (even once!) after performing such a common, repetitive, quick and mundane repair in the future?
post #32 of 61
I have to admit I found the Genius people went the other way with regards warranty claims. I had a problem with my original Apple TV, whereby the picture kept experiencing "snow".

There were a few things that could have been causing that (the Apple TV, my TV, the cable between the two etc.), but the guy at the Genius bar took my word for it when I explained I had tested the alternatives, and gave me a new unit without any checks.

I believe the fact that I was polite helped my cause (I used to work in customer service, and can attest that when people were rude to me, they didn't get the best of service).

However, putting sensors like this into a device push things too far against the consumer. The chap who mentions the water sensor tripping on his iPhone has a case in point. Technology like this is not foolproof, but it allows companies to cheat you out of your deserved warranty, unless you are able to prove a negative.

Consumer rights are getting increasingly eroded. I know this is not the forum to say it, since most people seem to think Apple can do no wrong, but we as consumers should be fighting back.
post #33 of 61
Finally! Excellent move. Should have been done a long time ago.

Should cut down on all those "exploding iPod" BS claims.
post #34 of 61
If you ever took your phone or any electronic device from out side when it is cold like below freezing into a warm environment water will condense on and in the device which will trip these sensors especially of the device is not power on and generating its own heat.

So yes they are good at what they do and will determine if the sensor ever came in contact with the liquid, however, they can not determine the event that lead up to or cause it to detect moisture.

So under normal use your device can see condensation in the device. You could argue this case with Apple and other companies that going form cold to hot environments is part of a normal usage, however, most companies will quickly point their spec says non-condensation.

By they way, Apple has been doing this since the very first macs, They storied in the PRAM, temp information about the product, power on cycles, power on hours, and a number of things about how people used the product and ever time the product was taken into service they would down load this information.
post #35 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Apple has investigated a system where portable devices like iPods and iPhones would detect and store into memory "consumer abuse events" such as exposure to extreme cold, heat...

Heat? Considering how hot my iPod Touch gets when it's being charged, I would imagine the detection system would flag it every time I plug it into the wall!
post #36 of 61
Someone will sue Apple over how the sensors are triggering falsley and ANYONE who claims they had a false trigger will get in on the class action suit. Even people who lie will get in on it.

I work in an environmental lab. If someone can send me some of these moisture sensors, I can test them (maybe).

In other news, shock sensors can easily be added, but Apple must think it is a serious issue to add cost to a product just to deny warranty claims. Apple's warranty is not exactly the best, although I have only had one product fail outside of warranty and one inside warranty. Both were fixed for free.
post #37 of 61
My confidential sources exclusively reveal that Apple will incorporate a package of temperature, moisture, humidity, and shock sensors into its future portable products. Data from these will be encrypted, written to non-erasable solid-state memory and processed using a proprietary algorithm developed by the Cupertino-based company. This will calculate what is being termed the WTF (Warranty Transition Factor), which when subtracted from the days-in-service count maintained by the device's real time clock yields the SOL (Short Or Long) warranty number, in days.

The SOL will be displayed in the device's menu bar or home screen, indicating how many days now remain on the original warranty as a function of WTF multi-vector abuse intensity and elapsed time.
post #38 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by jclampet View Post

I went into an Apple store on Saturday to see about a crack in my iPhone near the bottom port. After running a quick test on it, they told me they couldn't do anything because my moisture sensor had been activated. I was told that both the warranty and Applecare were voided by this. Since I haven't submerged my phone, spilled a drink on it, or done any of the other things I was told would activate the sensor I question how well it works, but the Apple genius insisted the system didn't make mistakes.

I had the exact same thing happen. The crack did result from a very short fall (less than 2 feet) onto a hardwood floor. The water mark may have come from the phone sitting on a wet seat in my car. Both instances seem like relatively routine use or "abuse" for a phone. I completely agree with others that Apple should put more effort into making more durable products.

That said, a strap on my old shoulder bag broke the day after I got my unibody MacBook last year. Despite an almost direct hit to screen-side corner onto a concrete sidewalk, there was barely more than a tiny, almost imperceviable dent. Maybe the iPhone team could take some cues from the laptop folks?
post #39 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post

Someone will sue Apple over how the sensors are triggering falsley and ANYONE who claims they had a false trigger will get in on the class action suit. Even people who lie will get in on it.

I work in an environmental lab. If someone can send me some of these moisture sensors, I can test them (maybe).

In other news, shock sensors can easily be added, but Apple must think it is a serious issue to add cost to a product just to deny warranty claims. Apple's warranty is not exactly the best, although I have only had one product fail outside of warranty and one inside warranty. Both were fixed for free.

You don't get to be one of the best re consumer service/support studies by having bad warranty programs.

If you work in a lab, you should be able to reference your claims better than just anecdotal evidence. And limited and really non-supportive at that.

In the meantime, here is something worth reading.

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3302 http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3302


1. http://www.computerworld.com/s/artic...faction_survey
2. http://voices.washingtonpost.com/fas...ogle_gain.html
post #40 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post

You don't get to be one of the best re consumer service/support studies by having bad warranty programs.

If you work in a lab, you should be able to reference your claims better than just anecdotal evidence. And limited and really non-supportive at that.

In the meantime, here is something worth reading.

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3302 http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3302


1. http://www.computerworld.com/s/artic...faction_survey
2. http://voices.washingtonpost.com/fas...ogle_gain.html


What is your point here? That support page covering Water Damage clearly states the hypocrisy that Apple has sunk into. It says, word for word:

The liquid submersion indicator will be activated when it comes in direct contact with liquid.

When this event does not occur, and the indicator is activated anyway, and Apple refuses service, which is happening over and over and over and over, Apple has clearly:

1. Lied on the support page of their website. (illegal)

2. Falsely denied warranty service to untold numbers of customers. (illegal)

3. Avoided dealing it, and is instead pursuing more options to spread this (illegal) behavior to other aspects of the same device.

The pure insanity here (both within Apple and HERE at AppleInsider) is staggering to say the least.
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