Apple to reportedly offer Apple Watch band exchanges as alternative to full returns

Posted:
in Apple Watch edited April 2015
According to a report on Wednesday, Apple will allow Apple Watch buyers to swap out the bundled strap for another if the accessory is not to their liking, a strategy that saves both time for the consumer and precious device supply for Apple.




A memo to Apple Store employees sent out today and later obtained by MacRumors reveals Apple plans to let Apple Watch customers who are looking to return the device an option to simply exchange bands.

Workers are instructed to suggest a band swap if a buyer wants to return Watch because they are unhappy with sizing, color or style.

There are limitations to exchanges, however, as Apple notes replacement bands "must be within the same collection as the watch and must be an available band option for that watch face." This suggests Apple Watch Sport buyers are only allowed to swap in a different Sport Strap, while Apple Watch owners can exchange their unwanted band for a Sport Strap, classic buckle, leather loop, link bracelet, Milanese loop and, for 38mm units, modern buckle.

Apple's standard 14-day return period applies to the strap swap program, while exchanges will only be performed on Watch units purchased through the Online Apple Store, Apple Store app or a "Kiosk," the latter likely referring to pop-up Apple Watch Shops. Exchanges do not appear to be an option for models purchased from the few high-end fashion outlets Apple chose to work with for launch. Unlike brick-and-mortar Apple Stores, these retailers will supposedly have stock on hand for in-store sales on Friday.

Finally, the memo notes Apple Store employees are not allowed to use band swapping as a way to configure Watch for a customer.

Exchanges are routed through Apple's call center, which sends the customer a new band and offers instructions on how to mail back the original. As for full Apple Watch returns, the document provides guidelines for inspecting the device, pointing out Geniuses and a store manager need to inspect Apple Watch Edition models prior to acceptance.

While initial Apple Watch units are spoken for, Apple today confirmed that orders are heading out earlier than expected, affecting some customers whose orders were originally estimated to arrive in May or June.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 26
    Hmm, how can this be twisted into something that Steve Jobs would allegedly not approve of? ;)

    I assume however that Apple's standard return policy applies for non-engraved items.
  • Reply 2 of 26
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 4,052member
    With available configurations only means you cannot have Silver Sport with black sport band which was what I wanted.
  • Reply 3 of 26
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post



    Hmm, how can this be twisted into something that Steve Jobs would allegedly not approve of? image



    I assume however that Apple's standard return policy applies for non-engraved items.



    Steve Jobs would never have allowed so many choices. You could have had black or white.\

     

     

     

    /s

  • Reply 4 of 26
    fallenjt wrote: »
    With available configurations only means you cannot have Silver Sport with black sport band which was what I wanted.

    you can if you are willing to buy it separate and end up with two bands

    If I was buying one I would be going the black sports with the reddish band, also not possible but buyable
  • Reply 5 of 26

    Here is an example of what you can create

     

    Now that I have seen them, I think the green and black is most striking

     

  • Reply 6 of 26
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 3,682moderator
    fallenjt wrote: »
    With available configurations only means you cannot have Silver Sport with black sport band which was what I wanted.

    My exact thought when reading this article. I ordered a separate black band for the Sport Watch I ordered. Just be sure when you do this to not order the one with the Space Grey pin; you want the one with the silver pin, which is the same for the Steel body or Aluminum body on the four other Sport bands.
  • Reply 7 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post



    Hmm, how can this be twisted into something that Steve Jobs would allegedly not approve of? image

     

    But... but... this is "the most personal product Apple has ever made." I don't want to buy something that some one else had touching their body parts..." Who knows, they may even been a different race... or, God forbid, even...you know...queer or something!

     

    /s

  • Reply 8 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by RadarTheKat View Post

     
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by fallenjt View Post



    With available configurations only means you cannot have Silver Sport with black sport band which was what I wanted.




    My exact thought when reading this article. I ordered a separate black band for the Sport Watch I ordered. Just be sure when you do this to not order the one with the Space Grey pin; you want the one with the silver pin, which is the same for the Steel body or Aluminum body on the four other Sport bands.

    I'm not sure Apple Watch bands have "pins" like other brands of bands... The the accent color is the finish on the clasp/closure that is visible but usually on the opposite side of the band from the watch.

  • Reply 9 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cy_starkman View Post

     

    Here is an example of what you can create

     

    Now that I have seen them, I think the green and black is most striking

     


    Yeah, that struck me too.

     

    The white and black is good looking, but I'm not too shore how easily the white would stay white.

     

    I find myself wondering what the outcome might be if A-list celebs started autographing these ?watch bands? Imagine the resale value of an ?watch with McCartney's signature on it (especially once he's dead). Or a band Beyoncé signed...

  • Reply 10 of 26
    Apple could have simply sold the Apple Watch bodies separate from all of the bands and saved themselves a lot of the "returns hassle". Making the watches available to purchase, in store, on April 24th (the date they've been advertising on television) would have been a big plus in consumers' eyes as well.

    But, you know, I don't run a multi-billion dollar corporation, so, what do I know?
  • Reply 11 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rockarollr View Post



    Apple could have simply sold the Apple Watch bodies separate from all of the bands and saved themselves a lot of the "returns hassle". Making the watches available to purchase, in store, on April 24th (the date they've been advertising on television) would have been a big plus in consumers' eyes as well.



    But, you know, I don't run a multi-billion dollar corporation, so, what do I know?

    For which we sing Hallelujah!!! Marketing is more then a science, it's an art.

  • Reply 12 of 26
    Hmm, how can this be twisted into something that Steve Jobs would allegedly not approve of? ;)

    I assume however that Apple's standard return policy applies for non-engraved items.

    Surprising, actually, Apple's usual 14 day return includes engraved items.
  • Reply 13 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post

     



    Steve Jobs would never have allowed so many choices. You could have had black or white.\

     

     

     

    /s




    And Product RED. Don't forget the Apple-Bono love fest!!

  • Reply 14 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

     

     

    The white and black is good looking, but I'm not too shore how easily the white would stay white.

     


     

    I love the White one. It looks very neat. But, like you said, don't know how long it would stay white. I'll probably get this for the wife. The Stainless Link Bracelet Watch is for me!

  • Reply 15 of 26
    rezwitsrezwits Posts: 850member
    This is choice dudes
  • Reply 16 of 26
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

     

    I'm not sure Apple Watch bands have "pins" like other brands of bands... The the accent color is the finish on the clasp/closure that is visible but usually on the opposite side of the band from the watch.




    They don't!

     

    Apple Watch strap interchanging mechanism

     

    Apple Watch: how to swap bands

  • Reply 17 of 26
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,221member
    ...

    The white and black is good looking, but I'm not too shore how easily the white would stay white.

    ....
    It will stay white until soap and water stop working.
  • Reply 18 of 26
    damn_its_hotdamn_its_hot Posts: 1,198member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rockarollr View Post



    Apple could have simply sold the Apple Watch bodies separate from all of the bands and saved themselves a lot of the "returns hassle". 

     

    Sure bob.  Thats like selling a car without tires


     

    You laugh but I know for a fact that Volkswagen and Volvo both sold there cars and Ford sold their trucks with the tires and wheels as an option (at least previous to now*). I have owned more than one of each and in each case the tires & wheels were added as an option. These were not any kind of fancy upgrade, they simply were not included in the sales price. I remember asking with my convertible Rabbit if I could take delivery without VW tires/wheels and the answer was yes but since they were installed they would have to charge me for the removal and alignment (almost blew the deal). I did in fact buy a Ford F150 without 4 tires and wheels (I did buy the spare with a plain rim and inexpensive tire and purchased 3rd party wheels and tires.

     

    *I will start with a disclaimer, that being that I have not bought any of the above vehicles in a number of years.

  • Reply 19 of 26
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,407member
    Hmm, how can this be twisted into something that Steve Jobs would allegedly not approve of? ;)

    I assume however that Apple's standard return policy applies for non-engraved items.

    John Sculley NEVER would have done this! /s
  • Reply 20 of 26
    damn_its_hotdamn_its_hot Posts: 1,198member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     

    ...there are always exceptions to the rule.

     

    It would be a disaster to buy a watch and then find out it does not come with a band.  I think the average consumer would be pretty pissed off.


     

    True enough -- but I thought it was funny that you chose the example that seemed to be so obviously common sense. Not trying to dis you -- I was shocked when I first encountered this with my VW (also pissed) but now laugh. I meant no offense and do agree with your final stmt.

     

    Have a good day,

    Cheers.

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