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MacRumors
Sep 13, 2011, 10:55 PM
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http://images.macrumors.com/article-new/2011/09/iphone_4_south_korea.jpg


Bloomberg reports (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-09-14/apple-to-revise-s-korea-iphone-return-policy-after-complaints.html) that Apple has revised its warranty replacement policy for iPhones in South Korea under pressure from regulators, now offering customers returning their defective phones within the first month of ownership the option of receiving brand-new replacement phones rather than refurbished units as has been standard policy.Consumers who find defects in their iPhones within a month of purchase will receive new devices instead of refurbished ones, the Fair Trade Commission said in a statement today. South Korea became the first country to convince Apple to change its global customer policy, the commission said. Steve Park, a Seoul-based spokesman for Apple, declined to comment on the change.

Korean iPhone buyers have complained Apple only gives devices refurbished with used parts when there are problems with the product, even though its service warranty states customers can get refunds, new phones or free repairs, the commission said. Under the revision, consumers have the right to choose between the options, the regulator said.The policy change comes after Korean lawmakers summoned (http://www.macrumors.com/2010/10/13/apple-executive-to-face-south-korean-parliament-over-iphone-replacement-policies/) Apple iPhone executive Farrel Farhoudi to the country's parliament last October to address concerns over Apple's policy of offering refurbished units as warranty replacements.

Questions over warranty replacements are not the only concerns facing Apple in South Korea, as a customer was recently awarded nearly $1000 (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/07/14/apple-pays-946-in-korean-lawsuit-over-location-data-collection/) in a lawsuit over the collection of iPhone location data. That decision has led to a $25 million class-action lawsuit (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/08/17/25-million-class-action-lawsuit-filed-against-apple-in-south-korea-over-location-data-collection/) covering about 27,000 iPhone users in the country.

Article Link: Apple to Offer New Replacement iPhones Instead of Refurbished Units in South Korea (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/09/13/apple-to-offer-new-replacement-iphones-instead-of-refurbished-units-in-south-korea/)



wordoflife
Sep 13, 2011, 11:52 PM
It would be nice if they brought that policy elsewhere. It would stink if you bought a brand new phone, two weeks later it breaks, and you have to get a refurbished phone after just buying a brand new phone.

I won't lie, but Apple refurbs are immaculate. I'm even considering buying a refurbished iPad because of how indistinguishable they are to a new device.

OriginalMacRat
Sep 14, 2011, 12:12 AM
I won't lie, but Apple refurbs are immaculate. I'm even considering buying a refurbished iPad because of how indistinguishable they are to a new device.

I agree.

I often buy Apple's refurbished products and never had issues with them.

But if I bought something new and it went south, I'd expect a new replacement.

iAmYou
Sep 14, 2011, 06:02 AM
Its the same thing in the US we have 30 days to return/exchange the iPhone.
Anyone in the US who is getting a refurb within the 1st 30 days is being duped.

bushido
Sep 14, 2011, 06:05 AM
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thats why i got mine with a insurance on tmobile. ive on my 3rd new iPhone 4 already. freakin glass and menu button

milo
Sep 14, 2011, 09:57 AM
Its the same thing in the US we have 30 days to return/exchange the iPhone.
Anyone in the US who is getting a refurb within the 1st 30 days is being duped.

Are you sure that everyone who exchanges within 30 days gets a new one?

charlituna
Sep 14, 2011, 10:01 AM
Its the same thing in the US we have 30 days to return/exchange the iPhone.
Anyone in the US who is getting a refurb within the 1st 30 days is being duped.

No one in the US is getting a refurb phone at any point.

Refurbs are post customer. In the US for sure, they can't use them as service parts because of privacy risks. Other countries may have different mileage on this due to their own laws. Maybe in South Korea, refurbs are fine. Thus they are used.

In the US at least what they do get are remanufactured phones. These are phones that have failed factory testing on one or two parts. The bad parts are replaced and the unit is retested. Then packaged as a service part. They have never been touched by a customer or 'used' beyond the testing process.

Despite the issue of laws, I'm betting all countries get the same 'remanufactured' units. Not actual refurbs and the issue is actually staff error in using the wrong terminology.

Also if we were to look at the South Korean policy text I'll put down odds that the phrase used is "replacement unit" not "new unit". Apple is very careful about that term because of the implications.

gatearray
Sep 14, 2011, 12:25 PM
Tell you what, Korean crybabies, when your phone breaks within warranty, instead of getting an almost brand new remanufactured iPhone on the spot, Apple will keep your cell phone for 2-3 weeks while they make the repair, and you'll get your same scratched up phone back after that. Sound good? :)

accessoriesguy
Sep 14, 2011, 01:11 PM
is it really that bad to get a referb?

Hear me out, i mean i would like a new phone.
But since you had already used your 'new' phone, you already were using a used phone, so an immaculate referb should be fine. As long as it looks brand spanking new whats wrong? granted if there is anything you don't like you can take in to get replaced. I think that would be fair (in my opinion).

But whatever law is law, if only i could get my hand on a batch of refurbished iphones to sell in the grey market.

highdough
Sep 14, 2011, 01:16 PM
What's the problem with getting a refurbished iPhone? With the refurbished ones you know they've been tested and work fine. About the only difference is you don't get to open the package, but you've presumably already done that.

myrtlebee
Sep 14, 2011, 02:10 PM
I bought a refurbished iPod nano (5th gen) once from the online refurb store and it arrived with a faulty screen (slight, constant flickers) and a shifting click wheel. That put me off to refurbs until I realized that I've had quality control problems with nearly every Apple item I've bought new in the past 3 years. That said, it goes to show you, it doesn't matter if it's refurbished or not- the chances of receiving a defective product are the same (or possibly less) than if one purchased a new unit. Apple's quality control is not the best new or refurbished. This policy is merely for people who have a disillusioned belief that new = less likely to have issues. Not the case with Apple.

iAmYou
Sep 14, 2011, 06:07 PM
Are you sure that everyone who exchanges within 30 days gets a new one?


Well what i said is, that they should be. If they are offered a remanufactured/ refurb iPhone within the 1st 30 days they are being duped.

There is a 30 day exchange and refund policy in the US (at least with AT&T)

If you are within your 1st 30 days you don't even go to apple, you go back to AT&T and exchange(For new iPhone) or refund.

mytdave
Sep 14, 2011, 06:17 PM
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To be honest, Apple has always had a ****** return policy. I hope this results in improvements in all countries.

mytdave
Sep 14, 2011, 06:50 PM
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I bought a refurbished iPod nano (5th gen) once from the online refurb store and it arrived with a faulty screen (slight, constant flickers) and a shifting click wheel. That put me off to refurbs until I realized that I've had quality control problems with nearly every Apple item I've bought new in the past 3 years. That said, it goes to show you, it doesn't matter if it's refurbished or not- the chances of receiving a defective product are the same (or possibly less) than if one purchased a new unit. Apple's quality control is not the best new or refurbished. This policy is merely for people who have a disillusioned belief that new = less likely to have issues. Not the case with Apple.

Where are you buying your Apple products? In my 22 years of owning Apple products I've had few issues, and none of them involved fit & finish. Methinks you're trolling or have extremely bad luck.

highdough
Sep 14, 2011, 07:30 PM
I bought a refurbished iPod nano (5th gen) once from the online refurb store and it arrived with a faulty screen (slight, constant flickers) and a shifting click wheel. That put me off to refurbs until I realized that I've had quality control problems with nearly every Apple item I've bought new in the past 3 years. That said, it goes to show you, it doesn't matter if it's refurbished or not- the chances of receiving a defective product are the same (or possibly less) than if one purchased a new unit. Apple's quality control is not the best new or refurbished. This policy is merely for people who have a disillusioned belief that new = less likely to have issues. Not the case with Apple.

I've got to agree with mytdave. Of all the devices I've bought from Apple, only one has had a problem (my daughter's Nano), and it took 6 months to figure out it HAD a problem (chapters would sometimes shuffle when listening to an audiobook). I took it into the Apple Store and they replaced it right away.

Sometimes things have issues, but I find Apples' quality control, at least, on par with everyone else.

macnisse
Sep 15, 2011, 12:19 PM
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Glad to see this, a new phone is the only proper way to go!