or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPhone › Genius Bar iPhone policies tightened to make AppleCare+ more attractive
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Genius Bar iPhone policies tightened to make AppleCare+ more attractive

post #1 of 64
Thread Starter 
After introducing a more comprehensive extended warranty option for iPhone buyers, Apple is reportedly curtailing liberal exchange policies in its retail stores to make the new option more attractive.

Last week, Apple introduced "AppleCare+" for iPhone buyers, a $99 replacement for its previous $69 extended warranty plan, but one that now covers up to two incidents of accidental damage. Previous plans did not cover accidental damage.

Under the terms of the new plan, users who experience factory defects or problems, like a premature battery failure or problem with their headphones, are covered for free for two years, while any accidental damage caused by the user is covered for the same two year term with a $49 deductible termed a "service fee."

Users also get two full years of free software support, although according to the AppleCare+ warranty contract, such free support excludes software described as beta, which would currently exclude iOS 5's Siri service.

Under the terms of the revised plan, Apple will now repair or replace an accidentally damaged device with a new or refurbished model at the $49 price of the service fee, something that would otherwise cost $200 outside of the warranty period.



ADH

Apple refers to such accidental damage from handling as "ADH," and defines it as "operational or mechanical failure caused by an accident from handling that is the result of an unexpected and unintentional external event (e.g., drops and liquid contact) that arises from your normal daily usage."

ADH does not provide "protection against normal wear and tear, theft, misplacement, reckless, abusive, willful or intentional conduct associated with handling and use of the Covered Equipment," Apple's terms and conditions outline.

Also excluded from coverage are "abuse, misuse, fire, earthquake or other external causes," "scratches and dents, that do not otherwise affect the functionality," other wear and tear due to normal aging of the product, devices "with a serial number that has been altered, defaced or removed, or has been modified to alter its functionality or capability."

The company notes "you will pay a $49 (U.S.) dollar service fee for each ADH claim, and may be asked to provide an explanation of where and when the accident occurred," adding that "Failure to pay the service fee or provide information relating to the accident when asked will result in claim denial."

Now, not free to charismatic buyers

However, Genius Bar employees have had the ability to waive that fee, negating much of the potential value of the AppleCare+ plan.

That flexible exchange policy now appears to have ended, forcing users who expect a cheap replacement for their own accidental breakage to opt into the AppleCare+ plan and pay a fee each time they damage their device, with a two incident limit on how many times they can claim a replacement.

Apple also appears to have tightened the requirement for buying the AppleCare+ option, noting on its website that "AppleCare+ must be purchased together with new covered equipment," although the contract also notes that will not cover "pre-existing condition on any Covered Equipment if you purchased the Plan after you purchased the Covered Equipment."

Separately, the contract also notes "You must purchase the Plan while your original iPhone is within Apples One Year Limited warranty," a contradiction of its website notice, but one that should supersede that limitation because it is actually written into the contract.

Apple also states that, "Unless local law provides otherwise, if you cancel within thirty (30) days of your Plans purchase, or receipt of these Terms and Conditions, whichever occurs later, you will receive a full refund less the value of any service provided under the Plan."

After 30 days, users who want to cancel the plan will receive a "pro rata refund of the original purchase price, based on the percentage of unexpired Coverage Period from the Plans date of purchase, less (a) a cancellation fee of twenty-five ($25) dollars or ten percent (10%) of the pro-rata amount, whichever is less, and (b) the value of any service provided to you under the Plan."
post #2 of 64
Apple's previous policy was going far above and beyond the expectations of good CS. If I drop my phone ...I alone bear that responsibility.

I'm thinking about going case less most of the time with my next phone so I will probably get AC+ and backup to iCloud.
He's a mod so he has a few extra vBulletin privileges. That doesn't mean he should stop posting or should start acting like Digital Jesus.
- SolipsismX
Reply
He's a mod so he has a few extra vBulletin privileges. That doesn't mean he should stop posting or should start acting like Digital Jesus.
- SolipsismX
Reply
post #3 of 64
I'm not liking this but after this more than one year release of the iPhone I think I was planning to buy the new extended coverage anyway.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
Reply
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
Reply
post #4 of 64
I tell you what would make it more attractive. Hire nicer people behind the counter.
post #5 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

After introducing a more comprehensive extended warranty option for iPhone buyers, Apple is reportedly curtailing liberal exchange policies in its retail stores to make the new option more attractive. ...

Unfortunately, neither this document, nor any of the ones I can find linked to provide an answer for the major complaint people have of Apple's iPhone service policy to date which is ...

... do they still replace a defective brand new phone with a reconditioned (used) one?

If anyone can clarify this for me I'd appreciate it. I've read all that I can find and I don't see anything that specifically states this reprehensible policy has been finally ended.
post #6 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottdreed_fsi View Post

I tell you what would make it more attractive. Hire nicer people behind the counter.

I have had nothing but great experience with the folks at the GB. They have always bent over backwards to help me with stuff (some of which was not required by any means with build numbers prefaced by a 'b' - yes I'm registered & pay my $99).

Sometimes it pays to be nice to the one you would like help from.

Instant karma gonna get you!
post #7 of 64
So when is AppleCare+ coming to the UK?
post #8 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

Unfortunately, neither this document, nor any of the ones I can find linked to provide an answer for the major complaint people have of Apple's iPhone service policy to date which is ...

... do they still replace a defective brand new phone with a reconditioned (used) one?

If anyone can clarify this for me I'd appreciate it. I've read all that I can find and I don't see anything that specifically states this reprehensible policy has been finally ended.

As long as it looks new and functions new I wouldn't mind it if I got a refurbished iPhone as long as the AppleCare+ date is reset for 2 more years -- or maybe that is asking too much. Maybe it should be completely rest in the first 6 months, after a year reset AC+ to 18 months, after 18 months reset to a year and after and after 18 months reset to a year.

Now buying refurbished stuff is another thing all together. I purchased an iPod Classic and right after the 3 month warranty it started getting flakey -- live and learn. The discount was not worth it.
post #9 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

If anyone can clarify this for me I'd appreciate it. I've read all that I can find and I don't see anything that specifically states this reprehensible policy has been finally ended.

I don't see any problem with it, and I'm curious why you would. It's a replacement for a used phone. The replacement phone is going to look and feel brand new. It will have been tested over and above a new phone. And it will be warranted the same as a new phone.
post #10 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post

I have had nothing but great experience with the folks at the GB. They have always bent over backwards to help me with stuff (some of which was not required by any means with build numbers prefaced by a 'b' - yes I'm registered & pay my $99).

Ditto. Heck, my father went in with his iPhone 4 I'd just bought him and explained how he ran in through the clothes washer only realizing the mistake when he heard the sound of it banging around going into the spin cycle. They replaced his phone for nuttin.

Amazing company. I'm sure that GB employee went to the back room and worked to find some way to fit it in policy.
post #11 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottdreed_fsi View Post

I tell you what would make it more attractive. Hire nicer people behind the counter.

Apple already has the highest rated customer service in the entire industry. Maybe if people like you spoke more civilly to the lowly clerks in the first place you'd get a better response.

And I have never understood the mindset that self-inflicted damage warrants a free replacement. If you go out and wreck your new car you don't expect the dealer or manufacturer to just give you a new one, no questions asked, do you? No, that's what insurance is for. But if you walk out of the Apple store with your new iPhone and drop it in the toilet Apple somehow becomes obligated to just replace it with no questions asked? And with that kind of attitude it's no wonder Apple puts damage sensors on their products.
post #12 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

... do they still replace a defective brand new phone with a reconditioned (used) one?

Rarely to never does someone bring in a 'brand new phone'. generally it is at least a couple of months old. Often several months, and yet you think you should walk out with a brand new retail phone.

Also, reconditioned != used. Reconditioned can come from factory line tests where one component fails. They replace that component and then send it in a plain box to be a service replacement. But it was never in the hands of a customer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

And I have never understood the mindset that self-inflicted damage warrants a free replacement.

Personally I think if it is self inflicted damage you should have to go and buy a brand new one. At full price or blow your upgrade. But Apple saw fit to try to help folks out and get them get a replacement at a sizable discount and without affecting their upgrade. And folks abused it.

And yet instead of just dropping the ability to pay for a replacement AND the ability for geniuses to offer free ones on a case by case basis they are still giving folks an option toward avoiding that whole $449 and up replacement


Quote:
Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post

As long as it looks new and functions new I wouldn't mind it if I got a refurbished iPhone as long as the AppleCare+ date is reset for 2 more years

A service replacement, even on that you pay for, doesn't restart the clock on Apple Care. Never has.

As for the article, I think you have the cause and effect backwards. The existence of AC+ isn't what is tightening the policy. Folks abusing the policy is tightening the policy and a desire to give the non abusers an option to help them out a little is what created AC+.

Apple has been trying to push away the freebies for a while because of abuse. They have created new subroutines that will tell geniuses if a device has ever been reported to have accidental damage or LCI set off (even if not to the extent that it would void coverage) or if someone has already gotten a freebie swap. Customers that come in with more than one phone that isn't worrying that get freebies are being flagged as potential scammers. Etc. If a customer claims that their battery is bad and it doesn't fail the diagnostic the tech is only supposed to change the battery not the phone. All GSMs that won't power on are supposed to be opened and the external serial number used, NOT the one on the sim tray which might have been swapped to one that is in warranty. Stores are that repeatedly just swapping phones even for defects, particularly if the diagnostic wasn't run or doesn't match the complaint are being audited as are geniuses and managers that are over swapping.

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

Reply

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

Reply
post #13 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by chabig View Post

I don't see any problem with it, and I'm curious why you would. It's a replacement for a used phone. ...

No, I'm talking about replacing *new* phones with *used* phones.

If you order one online and it comes with a defect, you have to take it to the Apple store in your city to get it replaced. They treat it as a used phone and replace it with a second used phone even though it's a brand new phone.

I think this happens mostly because they don't seem to have any mechanism for sending back a defective phone through the mail, or at least if they do, they don't tell their customers about it. If you buy it in the store and it's defective when you open it up they just open up another new one but when you get it delivered, you don't get that opportunity because it's just some UPS delivery guy and he doesn't have any other new ones to give you if your's is defective anyway.

It's the main reason I didn't order an iPhone 4S this time. The last two iPhones I ordered online showed up defective and it was a huge holy nightmare of about 3 months duration each time to finally get them to replace it with a new phone instead of a used one. This year I'm waiting a month and buying it in the store as I just don't need the stress of arguing with Apple customer support.
post #14 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottdreed_fsi View Post

I tell you what would make it more attractive. Hire nicer people behind the counter.

I'm not sure where you live but in the Apple store I frequent the Geniuses (Genii???) couldn't have been more helpful or more pleasant. On one occasion they could have been more knowledgeable, but at least they sent it up the line and a higher up engineer spent several hours on the phone working on my problem.
post #15 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

No, I'm talking about replacing *new* phones with *used* phones.

That would piss me off too. No clue if they've changed that policy.
post #16 of 64
Good!

Careless people and slobs should not get their iPhones replaced for free!

I am always reading about somebody walking into an Apple store and they have an iPhone that was dropped and the glass is broken and they get a brand new one! That is complete crap and that policy should end. It is an insult to all good customers who are not careless and accident prone.

Do people who are careful and don't go around dropping and breaking their phones get anything in exchange? No, they do not and careless people should not be rewarded and get free services when careful people do not get anything.

If somebody is extremely accident prone or if somebody is simply a careless moron, then they should purchase the extra insurance from Apple. These people should pay more, it is only fair.
post #17 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

No, I'm talking about replacing *new* phones with *used* phones.

If you order one online and it comes with a defect, you have to take it to the Apple store in your city to get it replaced.

So what happened when you called the online store and told them that the moment you opened the box there was a defect with your phone.

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

Reply

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

Reply
post #18 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post

Now buying refurbished stuff is another thing all together. I purchased an iPod Classic and right after the 3 month warranty it started getting flakey -- live and learn. The discount was not worth it.

Quit buying refurbs from Cowboom. Apple's refurbs have the EXACT SAME warranty as new and applecare is able to be purchased for them just the same.
post #19 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by scottdreed_fsi View Post

I tell you what would make it more attractive. Hire nicer people behind the counter.

I find that it varies a lot from store to store. I used to go to the closest store, but I switched to the downtown store a while ago. The people there are much better than the mall store. Like night and day, actually.
post #20 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

No, I'm talking about replacing *new* phones with *used* phones.

If you order one online and it comes with a defect, you have to take it to the Apple store in your city to get it replaced. They treat it as a used phone and replace it with a second used phone even though it's a brand new phone.

I think this happens mostly because they don't seem to have any mechanism for sending back a defective phone through the mail, or at least if they do, they don't tell their customers about it. If you buy it in the store and it's defective when you open it up they just open up another new one but when you get it delivered, you don't get that opportunity because it's just some UPS delivery guy and he doesn't have any other new ones to give you if your's is defective anyway.

It's the main reason I didn't order an iPhone 4S this time. The last two iPhones I ordered online showed up defective and it was a huge holy nightmare of about 3 months duration each time to finally get them to replace it with a new phone instead of a used one. This year I'm waiting a month and buying it in the store as I just don't need the stress of arguing with Apple customer support.

They have a 14 day refund policy. If your phone is defective, I'm sure you would know within that time frame. I would suggest returning it for a full refund. If you purchased it from apple.com, you can return it at any apple store. If you purchased it from your carrier, I would assume you can return it to one of their retail stores. I've only had to deal with ATT so I can't speak for the other companies. I purchased a 8 gig 3g phone a few weeks after it launched and returned it for a full refund a week later. I then went to the apple store and purchased a new 16 gig model instead. I know, I'm just as guilty as some of the people out there, but I don't abuse it. That was the only time I returned an iphone.

On the other hand, the majority of the cases are from customers who have used their phones for a good amount of time already. Their phone is no longer "brand new" so to speak. They're replacing your used phone with a factory refurbished and tested phone that looks and works like a brand new phone.
post #21 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmurchison View Post

Apple's previous policy was going far above and beyond the expectations of good CS. If I drop my phone ...I alone bear that responsibility.

I'm thinking about going case less most of the time with my next phone so I will probably get AC+ and backup to iCloud.

A million times THANK YOU!!!! It's amazing the number of people that blame the phone or Apple when it breaks b/cof their accident.
post #22 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Good!

Careless people and slobs should not get their iPhones replaced for free!

I am always reading about somebody walking into an Apple store and they have an iPhone that was dropped and the glass is broken and they get a brand new one! That is complete crap and that policy should end. It is an insult to all good customers who are not careless and accident prone.

Do people who are careful and don't go around dropping and breaking their phones get anything in exchange? No, they do not and careless people should not be rewarded and get free services when careful people do not get anything.

If somebody is extremely accident prone or if somebody is simply a careless moron, then they should purchase the extra insurance from Apple. These people should pay more, it is only fair.

Absolutely agree. I have to admit, even someone in my own circle of friends have taken advantage of Apple. He purchased a 16gig iphone 3gs along with Applecare. He then bought a non functional 32gig 3gs from craigslist. He somehow managed to get Apple to replace that broken 32gig!! From what he said, the guys at the GB refused at first because their records clearly indicated he bought a 16 gig model. After some discussion, they agreed to replace it as a one time deal.

It's the ones who take advantage of things like this that ruins it for the good people. Costco has one of the best refund/exchange policies ever, and because of abuse they also had to modify it.
post #23 of 64
Are you one of the doucebags who go in demanding a new phone when it's broken due to mishandling?

Quote:
Originally Posted by scottdreed_fsi View Post

I tell you what would make it more attractive. Hire nicer people behind the counter.
post #24 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

Unfortunately, neither this document, nor any of the ones I can find linked to provide an answer for the major complaint people have of Apple's iPhone service policy to date which is ...

... do they still replace a defective brand new phone with a reconditioned (used) one?

If anyone can clarify this for me I'd appreciate it. I've read all that I can find and I don't see anything that specifically states this reprehensible policy has been finally ended.

It does state in the terms and conditions that the device may be new or reconditioned. It is at Apple's discretion. That being said, don't expect the people replacing your device to know the difference, they don't. Some are new, others are reconditioned. According to Apple, both have the same finished-goods standards.

Check all the phone companies... They all offer "like new" replacements outside of the return period. Why do you expect something different?
post #25 of 64
I never thought the policy of simply replacing the phone damaged by misuse was a good idea. First, it sends the wrong message - that the phones are not of great value. Second, it does nothing for getting customers to take responsibility for their own equipment. I've seen countless people (friends included) who treat their iPhones like crap and then demand a new one when it finally fails. Finally, I'm sick of the "disposable" attitude people have regarding their phones. Break it? Just get a new one for free. Who cares? Maybe now when you spend $500+ for your phone, you won't be so freaking careless with it.
post #26 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoXoM View Post

So when is AppleCare+ coming to the UK?

When is any kind of pro support coming to more remote parts of the world off the USA/Canada-UK axis?

Since the mid 90s, it's always been simpler, faster and more efficient to fix anything by oneself; getting 3rd party or Apple parts via online sources, disregarding warranties and support plans altogether.

Broken glass on an iPhone - order a new one and replace. Hard drive in an iMac - get a new one and replace. Something more complicated - get a similar used unit and make a working one out of 2 broken ones (wait if necessary).

Have been coding and fixing Apple gear since I upgraded my original Mac to a fat mac in the mid 80 s
post #27 of 64
Maybe if they didn't make the phone out of glass it wouldn't break so easily.
post #28 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Good!

I am always reading about somebody walking into an Apple store and they have an iPhone that was dropped and the glass is broken and they get a brand new one!

I was wondering how long this "Yes" policy at the Genius Bar was going to last. We (an authorised repairer) were always advising customers with smashed glass to head down to the Apple store and they always got a replacement no questions asked.

I assumed Apple was doing this due to the poor design of the iPhone 4 in the way that the glass on both sides isn't really protected by any substantial edging like previous models (and maybe an attempt to avoid a class action lawsuit by keeping customers happy!). I have rarely seen a 3GS or prior with a smashed screen.
post #29 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Obama View Post

Maybe if they didn't make the phone out of glass it wouldn't break so easily.

Maybe they should have used transparent aluminum. Oh hell, that would just dent.
post #30 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

free support excludes software described as beta, which would currently exclude iOS 5's Siri service.

I wonder if that's an oversight or if Apple intentionally labeled the service beta to avoid providing support. Normally Apple has limited distribution of beta software to developers and small numbers of the public through it's Appleseed program, and support is provided through the confidential beta channels. I can't see that Apple will withhold support for a key software component that comes with the phone and is touted as one of the big reasons to upgrade.
post #31 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Obama View Post

Maybe if they didn't make the phone out of glass it wouldn't break so easily.

And maybe if you decided to take care of your $600 possessions, they wouldn't get ruined.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChristophB View Post

Maybe they should have used transparent aluminum. Oh hell, that would just dent.

But you wouldn't be able to see the dents, so it wouldn't matter as much.

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply

Originally Posted by helia

I can break your arm if I apply enough force, but in normal handshaking this won't happen ever.
Reply
post #32 of 64
$99 up-front then $49 to replace your phone is still a lot more attractive than the $649-$849 retail cost of your phone.

Looking back... I wonder how much money Apple lost by giving out replacement phones over the years.
post #33 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

And maybe if you decided to take care of your $600 possessions, they wouldn't get ruined.

It's my humble opinion that people buy the $199 phone not realizing that'll it cost >$600 to replace. The other possibility could be they bought something they can't afford to replace if lost, stolen or broken.
post #34 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Scrip View Post


Looking back... I wonder how much money Apple lost by giving out replacement phones over the years.

Or, you could say: "I wonder how many new lifetime customers Apple gained with their liberal repair policy." Just about everybody I know who had a dealing with The Genius Bar for their iPhone came away singing the praises of Apple to all who would listen!
Progress is a comfortable disease
--e.e.c.
Reply
Progress is a comfortable disease
--e.e.c.
Reply
post #35 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bageljoey View Post

Or, you could say: "I wonder how many new lifetime customers Apple gained with their liberal repair policy." Just about everybody I know who had a dealing with The Genius Bar for their iPhone came away singing the praises of Apple to all who would listen!

That's a great point and one I hadn't considered. Selectively applying replace to further build customer loyalty. I've broken my stuff and each time told the GB gang what I did to break it. I don't mind paying of my mistakes and accidents.
post #36 of 64
I wonder if this covers any damage resulting from dirt trapped under Apple's own bumpers. Currently apple claims no responsibility from any damage inflicted on an iPhone 4 by the ineffectiveness of the bumpers to the antennas protection.
Then again we won't need bumpers now that the antennae "problem" has been fixed.
post #37 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Under the terms of the new plan, users who experience factory defects or problems, like a premature battery failure or problem with their headphones, are covered for free for two years

It's not free. It's $99.

Quote:
The company notes "you will pay a $49 (U.S.) dollar service fee for each ADH claim, and may be asked to provide an explanation of where and when the accident occurred," adding that "Failure to pay the service fee or provide information relating to the accident when asked will result in claim denial."

"I dropped it in the toilet."
Dunno how many times I have heard of someone doing this...
post #38 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by iKol View Post

I wonder if this covers any damage resulting from dirt trapped under Apple's own bumpers. Currently apple claims no responsibility from any damage inflicted on an iPhone 4 by the ineffectiveness of the bumpers to the antennas protection.
Then again we won't need bumpers now that the antennae "problem" has been fixed.

Dude, seriously. Apple didn't put the dirt there. Clean your gear!!!
post #39 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stevenson View Post

It does state in the terms and conditions that the device may be new or reconditioned. It is at Apple's discretion. That being said, don't expect the people replacing your device to know the difference, they don't. Some are new, others are reconditioned. According to Apple, both have the same finished-goods standards.

Check all the phone companies... They all offer "like new" replacements outside of the return period. Why do you expect something different?

Apple isn't alone with this policy, if you read the terms & conditions of just about any electronic item you buy,it states the same policy. I've had experience with Sony and Panasonic sending referb units.
post #40 of 64
So it begins. Jobs dies, and within months, Apple reverts to a company run by MBAs and retards.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: iPhone
AppleInsider › Forums › Mobile › iPhone › Genius Bar iPhone policies tightened to make AppleCare+ more attractive