Danish court rules Apple not allowed to dole out refurb iPhones for service swaps

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Comments

  • Reply 21 of 71
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,740member
    sog35 said:

    You already got the benefit of using the phone for 2 years. There is no reason to give you a new phone.
    Agreed.

    It is absolutely ridiculous that somebody can use a phone for a full 2 years and then go and trade it in for a brand new one.

    That makes no business sense at all.

    What kind of anti-business retards come up with and make these kind of rules? 


    jbdragonnetmagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 22 of 71
    spice-boyspice-boy Posts: 1,025member
    Just as any foreign company must follow the laws of this country when doing business, Apple must do the same when selling in other countries. Apple should be aware of these consumer rights laws so I'm not sure what the big deal is? 
    HPDKlinkmaniqatedo
  • Reply 23 of 71
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,740member
    spice-boy said:
    Apple must do the same when selling in other countries. 
    Not necessarily.

    Apple has a lot of weight to pull around, and just because certain countries have anti-business rules and practices in place, that does not automatically mean that Apple must consent.

    Apple has various options, such as getting them to change their rules or raising the prices of devices in that country to cover the added costs of their retard rules.
    jbdragonnetmage
  • Reply 24 of 71
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 4,295member
    dysamoria said:
    Good. There's no telling what's potentially wrong with a refurb that's been missed and when you paid for a new device, you should not be given a not-new in exchange after finding out your brand new device has a defect.

    This should be standard, everywhere, for all "replacement as warranty service" situations. If you start with a new product that has a defect, you should end up with a new product without defect as warranty protection against defect.

    For mobile devices and laptops/desktops.

    No, I don't think it should be mandated for repair instigated by damage. Give the customer an option between actual repair or replacement with refurb. Oh wait, Apple doesn't have the will to do component level repair even though we know it's possible...
    I pretty much agree with this stance. If the manufacturer makes a product 'unrepairable' for certain defects, it should provide the user with a new phone, not a phone that has left the manufacturing chain and been re-channeled as certified good.

    The same goes for any repair. Apple never guarantees you will get unused, new parts in repairs. They  reserve the right in most jurisdictions to use reconditioned parts. They should also be obliged to hand over the defective piece unless the user expressly states that is not wanted.
    HPDK
  • Reply 25 of 71

    "Good. There's no telling what's potentially wrong with a refurb that's been missed and when you paid for a new device, you should not be given a not-new in exchange after finding out your brand new device has a defect."



    I disagree. The refurb items have already been through an extensive real-world check and only the bogus part replaced. I have been buying only refurb computers from Apple for two decades & they have been flawless. And a better price.    
     If the Danes were concerned about diminished resale value- 1) how would anyone know, 2) it should not matter anyway, in fact it is a feature (see above), 3) if the owner trades in at an Apple Store for a new (new model) phone, it would be Apple taking any perceived hit on value.


    jbdragonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 26 of 71
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,740member
    sog35 said:
    Or just leave the country entirely. 

    Losing sales from Denmark is a drop in teh bucket
    Agreed.

    In extreme cases, then that is always an option that I have advocated for in the past, if you are dealing with somebody who is totally unreasonable and will cause you significant losses.
    jbdragonnetmage
  • Reply 27 of 71
    apple ][ said:
    spice-boy said:
    Apple must do the same when selling in other countries. 
    Not necessarily.

    Apple has a lot of weight to pull around, and just because certain countries have anti-business rules and practices in place, that does not automatically mean that Apple must consent.

    Apple has various options, such as getting them to change their rules or raising the prices of devices in that country to cover the added costs of their retard rules.
    I think we all know that Apple might not have as much might out side the US as they would like to have - or let people think they have. The EU have realled in all the big Tech companies one after another. Especially if you produce hardware then you need to follow some really strict laws. The same goes if you sell stuff in California.

    And Apple have more often than most been told that their repairability of their products are really not good.

    But I think people are getting this completely wrong, the law is there to protect the consumer, and also the producer. Apple is also protected, it is very difficult to sue them for defective products, and there is nothing like in the US where thousands of complainers can be pliled on a court case which would cause the company to pay out millions in damages.

    I have been following the case (on and off); in essence  it it not legal to hand back a "refurbished" product if it's not possible to repair the old one - we are only talking about products which break where it was not supposed to break (jumping on your phone validates the warranty). You cannot give the customer a worse product than he/she had prior to the product stopped functioning - which is why Apple was told that it cannot replace a "non-working" phone with a refurbished phone - as the value of it is less than then phone which stopped working. They are allowed to repair it and replace parts with new ones, as the product there by does not loose value. They only have to replace it if they cannot repair it with in a satisfactory time - which normally legal wise in Europe is a couple of weeks, of longer if they cannot get the parts, but they then have to suggest to pay up, or replace with a new phone. 

    It's been like that for ages in this part of the world. And if you think Denmark is bad, then look at Italy.
    HPDK
  • Reply 28 of 71
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 4,295member
    apple ][ said:
    spice-boy said:
    Apple must do the same when selling in other countries. 
    Not necessarily.

    Apple has a lot of weight to pull around, and just because certain countries have anti-business rules and practices in place, that does not automatically mean that Apple must consent.

    Apple has various options, such as getting them to change their rules or raising the prices of devices in that country to cover the added costs of their retard rules.
    Apple has very little weight to pull. It knows the rules before it starts selling. It abides by them or chooses not to make the product available in that country. Apple decides. Apple has had run ins with Danish consumer legislation in the past and chose not to challenge the findings against its manufacturing processes (in the most famous case it was defective solder points on iBooks).

    The rules are not anti business. They are pro consumer. Business decides if it wants to play by those rules or not.

    In the case of the EU, not playing by those rules would be 'anti business'.
    baconstang
  • Reply 29 of 71
    HPDKHPDK Posts: 7member
    sunman42 said:
    I don't even play a lawyer on TV, much less speak Danish, but what remedy would the judges suggest if someone brought in a one year, 364 day old phone for warranty replacement? A brand new phone, or a refurb?
    It doesn't matter if the phone is 8 month or 23 months old the rules are the same and has been for years. You can't under warranty replace a product with a used and/or refurbished product without the customers knowledge and acceptance.

    It's just so completely basic in danish consumer protection law that it's unbelievable that Apple decided to go to court over this.

    Some background info - The following is loosely translated, not legally binding or complete.)
    The danish "Købelov" Tradelaw paragraph 78 deals with the customer rights in case of defects.

    The customer, has in case of defects, the following rights to choose from: 1. repair, 2. redelivery of the same product as defined in the original agreement (with two years warranty from redelivery) , 3. a reasonable amount back (small defects eg. charger) or 4. The entire original purchase price back.

    If the seller offers to repair or redelivery the customer cannot demand option 3 or 4. The important thing here is that redelivery is defined as what was originally agreed a new product free from defects.

    Another important aspect is that the seller has to repair or replace the product within a reasonable time and without inconvenience or cost to the customer. If the seller can't do this the 4. rule is back in play. My guess is that Apple has not been willing to set up at proper network of repair facilities and thus has chosen the easy fix of giving all or most a refurbished device as a replacement.

    The consumer can choose to accept a refurbished product - but is not obligated to do so. In this case I probably would have chosen a refurbish over a repair.




  • Reply 30 of 71
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 4,295member
    crabby said:

    "Good. There's no telling what's potentially wrong with a refurb that's been missed and when you paid for a new device, you should not be given a not-new in exchange after finding out your brand new device has a defect."



    I disagree. The refurb items have already been through an extensive real-world check and only the bogus part replaced. I have been buying only refurb computers from Apple for two decades & they have been flawless. And a better price.    
     If the Danes were concerned about diminished resale value- 1) how would anyone know, 2) it should not matter anyway, in fact it is a feature (see above), 3) if the owner trades in at an Apple Store for a new (new model) phone, it would be Apple taking any perceived hit on value.


    I have never seen Apple document those extensive real world checks. I suspect the reality is ocular revision plus running the device through a diagnostics application. If it passes it goes back on sale.

    Some faults are subjective. You might have a unit that you think heats up too much in normal use and you return it. It gets checked, passes and put back on sale. The next person might not notice the heat but that doesn't necessarily mean a problem doesn't exist. Perhaps the battery was subjected to strange voltage changes, temperature changes etc (I don't know if all refurbished phones have new batteries installed, I'm just providing an example of subjective issues) and the testing gives it an all clear.

    Having a factory unit eliminates those potential doubts even though the factory unit could still have problems. That isn't the issue.
  • Reply 31 of 71
    gatorguy said:
    Didn't the court simply "define" what Apple's responsibilities were in their warranty docs and under the law? If giving the customer used market value in cash isn't there in writing then that's not an option. Am I mistaken?
    It is indeed not an option - and neither is the refurbish part. The court stated that out of environmental concerns it would make sense.
    Even the business organizations have supported it as a "100% correct verdict" under current law.

    Apple isn't exactly a rookie in Denmark or Europe. Why behave like one?

    The obvious solution is to push refurbishing as part of a green agenda and win without a battle.
    Instead Apple decided to spend 4 years on chasing a customer. Sun Tzu would have been appalled.
    HPDK
  • Reply 32 of 71
    volcanvolcan Posts: 1,791member
    I got a refurb replacement once and the Genius told me that refurbs have all new exteriors. Anything you would touch is brand new. That said, I had an issue with a display artifact on my iPhone 5 and they swapped out the entire screen component in about 15 minutes at an Apple Store in LA. I always spend the extra money for Apple Care+ for all my mobile devices, but not on desktops.
  • Reply 33 of 71
    lkrupp said:

    'If this case goes against Apple then they should probably stop with replacements altogether and just repair the defective phones no matter how long it takes.'
    No, they are by law not allowed to use weeks or months to fix a problem. The danish law dictates that repair or redelivery has to be done fast, without inconvenience or cost to the consumer.

    If Apple (or any other) does not repair or redeliver in a fast and convenient way, the costumer can demand the original purchase price back - even after 24 months.
    Basically Apple would violate the original purchase agreement and the law if they did as you suggest.

    In other words if you want to sell your goods in Denmark. You better deliver what you promise and are obligated to by law. If you need to repair or redeliver. You better do it in a fast and convenient way or you will have to pay every single penny back to the costumer.

    Apple is not without lawyers. They should know the law and abide by it. No one is forcing Apple to sell in Denmark or the rest of the EU. Everybody else abide the rules -  Apple should do so too.




    nubus
  • Reply 34 of 71
    There's some confusion here. At least in the US, Apple doesn't have anything refurbished available in their brick and mortar stores. You can only get refurbs online. 

    The service replacement devices are not refurbished. They are newly manufactured devices. Refurbished devices have had a bad part or parts replaced and are then resold. That is not what you get in a physical Apple Store. 

    Consider, as mentioned above, the service replacement devices have a new enclosure, new display and new battery at a minimum. That already shows the device is not refurbished. If it was truly refurbished the replacement device could come already scratched or dented but have, say, a new camera or logic board. This is not what happens. 

    Yes, it's possible that the replacement device has a previously used part. That does not make the unit a refurbished unit. 

    This will likely come down to the definition of "refurbished" and what Apple is actually providing, IMO. The quote in the article from the US case actually seems to support Apple's position, oddly. 
    netmage
  • Reply 35 of 71
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,615member
    Apple needs to market their re-furbs better. They need to explain explicitly what a refurb is and then give the user a choice. A refurb is essentially a new phone and the turn-around time is super quick.  Only a fool would choose to have the original back if their phone is more than a couple of month's old.
    jbdragonnetmage
  • Reply 36 of 71
    volcanvolcan Posts: 1,791member
    There's some confusion here. At least in the US, Apple doesn't have anything refurbished available in their brick and mortar stores. You can only get refurbs online. 
    Nope. They have them right in the store as exchanges. True, you can't go in to a store and ask to buy a refurb. 
    edited December 2016
  • Reply 37 of 71
    It may put Apple in an impossible situation, what if Apple only makes new products for 12 months, then there are no new devices made. Will Danish law demand Apple to allocate some new stock for their 24-month warranty period? 
  • Reply 38 of 71
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,443member
    Apple has not designed its phones for easy repair.  Why not?  Because that would not maximize their profit.  I've purchased several refurbs & they worked flawlessly.  I've purchased a couple of new Macs and ... both were defective.  Go figure.  Maybe Apple should charge more for refurb, and not less, eh?

    Pretty sure I am gonna get a Mac Pro 2, my question is this: should I get a new one or wait for a refurb? ;-)
    I bought a MacBook Pro 15" i7 as a refurb in 2010, my only one ever, my Mac Pro was new as have all my Macs (I can't even number how many).  The refurb MacBook Pro failed after a year but I had an extended warranty so I got a new motherboard.  Since then, given I've never had a Mac fail since 1984, I am hesitant on this as one rotten apple and all that .... so to speak. :)
  • Reply 39 of 71
    bellsbells Posts: 131member
    sog35 said:
    This is pretty dumb.

    This is like buying a car. Then your car has a recall 2 years latter. And you demand a brand new car.
    Not really. If you bring in your car for recall, you get your car back just fixed. Nonetheless this is dumb. The law doesn't prevent Apple from fixing a customers phone. The warranty clearly states what you might get. By not allowing Apple to give refurbished phones hurts consumers. First, Apple gives refurbished phones because instead of repairing your phone, which Apple could do, it is faster to give you a refurbished phone. Who wants to wait a week while Apple fixes your phone. Second, it just makes phones cost more. Third, I'd rather have a refurbished phone back then my old one fixed. Refurbished phones are throughly tested to met the standard of like new.
    netmage
  • Reply 40 of 71
    sog35 said:
    HPDK said:
    sog35 said:
    This is pretty dumb.

    This is like buying a car. Then your car has a recall 2 years latter. And you demand a brand new car.
    No it's not.

    If your car is recalled the car dealer is obligated to fix it. (but if he can't then you get your money back - I think that is fair, don't you?)
    Yes you get your money back.
    But if teh car is 2 years old you won't get the price you paid for it. They will deduct depreciation.

    They should do the same for iPhone.

    You already got the benefit of using the phone for 2 years. There is no reason to give you a new phone.
    You would not expect your car dealer to use used parts or get your neighbor car in return just because it's the same make and model.

    I get your point and depreciation is a part of danish law, however, in this case it would normally not be applicable.

    As I talk about elsewhere in this discussion Apple are at fault for not getting the consumers consent in using used parts, if the consumer agreed no problem but they didn't get his consent.


    The danish/EU two year mandatory has many aspects. One is to insure products of a high quality. A buyer has a reasonable law substantiated expectation that a product will be free of defects for 2 years. A seller should not be selling substandard phones. Strong consumer protections makes it a bad business model to sell bad products. I'm not saying Apple makes bad products - I use two iPhone's, two Mac's, an iPad and an Apple TV. I am, however, saying, that It should be part of your business plan to follow the law and be honest with your costumers. If they choose their lawful right to repair/redelivery you should honor the law and do so. The law is not new and it's your choice to do business in that jurisdiction.

    And just to be clear - Apple can still handout refurbished phones in Denmark, they just have to get consent from the consumer.

    Furthermore no one can demand a brand new phone or money back if Apple repairs the original in a quick and timely manner.

    In this case I personally would probably have gone with the refurb. I generally trust Apple's refurb phones and I like the feel of a new phone. In other cases with minor defect I would want my original product back or my money back. I know that I treat my tech well and don't want a 'Frankenstein's Monster' put together of several dead and defective machines.

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