Always lots of refurbished Macbook Pros

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by mcpix, May 11, 2017.

  1. mcpix macrumors regular

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    May 13, 2005
    #1
    Over the years, I've bought many computers through the refurbished section of the Apple Store and when a new computer I'm interested in comes out, I can't wait until it shows up in the refurbished section.

    Originally I was planning on buying a new 2016 Macbook Pro, but held off because I'm still not sure if I can live without the legacy ports. For now, my 2014 Macbook Pro is working fine and I'm still debating about what I should do. However, a couple of times a week I'll look at the refurbished section to see what's available.

    What strikes me as odd is that there is always a large number of refurbished 2016 Macbook Pros available in almost any configuration you could want. This is unusual, especially for Macbook Pros as typically you needed to watch the refurbished section pretty closely to find the computer you wanted before it sold out. In the past I've used sites like refurb.me just to make sure I got one before they were gone.

    I'm not sure if this means a lot of these are being returned, but it seems strange that a computer that shows "strong demand" is so readily available on the refurbished store.
     
  2. smallcoffee macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    No different than 2013-2014-2015-2016 unless you have numbers that prove otherwise?
     
  3. Brookzy macrumors 68040

    Brookzy

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    #3
    Refurbished models do certainly seem to be more readily available than in the past for previous generations.

    I would not be surprised at all if there were considerably more returns of this generation than previous, considering the wide variety of recurring quality issues, many of which I have experienced first hand.

    (That is not to pass judgement on the general manufacturing quality - each generation is more complex, more difficult to build - it's harder to get right.)

    Combined with significant year-on-year sales rises, large increases in average selling price (which may make the average customer more discerning about getting a product they are happy with, further increasing the return rate), and the reduced repairability of this generation (which would increase the number of outright replacements rather than repairs), I think it is quite likely there are more refurbs floating around this year.
     
  4. mcpix thread starter macrumors regular

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    #4
    Obviously I don't have any hard numbers as Apple never breaks out individual sales. Just my observation based on watching the refurb section over the years. For example when the 2016 Macbook Pro first came out there were often 2015 refurbs for sale (I debated about buying one). However, they always seemed to sell out pretty quickly.
     
  5. ZapNZs macrumors 68000

    ZapNZs

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    #5
    I think this was an intentional outcome of Apple waiting so long to begin selling any 2016 refurbs at all - many people found it extremely frustrating when they had to constantly check the site or use an alert App to get ahold of whatever refurb became available and then speed through checkout to ensure no one else got it. With the possible changes in tooling/locations/vendors that such a major refresh could bring, initial individual specimens being returned for minor QA imperfections could also add to the available supply of refurbs, as could a larger sales volume (which means inherently more will be returned.)
     
  6. leman macrumors 604

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    Oct 14, 2008
    #6
    There seemed to be more returns than usual, especially in Q4 2016 (probably over battery/keyboard/port worries). Maybe they are also optimising their refurb department and/or strategy, making them available earlier. Would be consistent with their declared recycling course.
     
  7. ascender macrumors 68000

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    Dec 8, 2005
    #7
    The new MBP seems to have sold very well and there was a loooooooong wait for it, so its maybe no surprise there's a decent number of refurbs available? Probably just proportionately as many as always I'm assuming?
     
  8. Ries macrumors 68000

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    #8
    You have the numbers that prove there isn't a difference?
     
  9. smallcoffee macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    Nope. I'm just providing an anecdote like everybody else. In other words, the OP is just conjecture.
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #10
    I don't think you can make any conclusion on the success/failure of the MBP based on the refurbs. It may be an indicator and it may not - its not precise enough without solid figures :)
     
  11. ascender macrumors 68000

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    #11
    You can prove anything with facts though, where's the fun in that ;)

    Based on the earnings call, the MBP seems to have been a big success.
     
  12. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #12
    I had postulated a month or so ago that the bump in sales of the MBP was because of people buying the 2015 not the 2016. I was wrong and I admit it. :)

    It seems that the 2016 model is selling quite well, and that's good news for Apple. They've reversed the shrinkage and are growing their marketshare. No if only they could do that with the iPads :)
     
  13. ascender macrumors 68000

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    #13
    Its getting so difficult though to cut through the clickbait, the negative posts on forums and even a lot of the tech press articles to get a properly objective view on what's going on with Apple. In recent years forums like this one have become so negative in places after a product launch that its pretty depressing. Its great that forums like MR are thriving inspite of social media which has killed many other ones stone dead, but there's times where its a really frustrating place to read and post in.

    I know there's been thousands and thousands of words written about iPad sales and hours of podcasts, but as someone who loves gadgets, is a gamer, works in technology and has been an Apple customer for about 20 years now... I've never, ever owned a device which I use every day for as long as my current iPad Air. Typically I'm always an early adopter and fast to switch stuff out for the latest tech. I genuinely think that's all there is to it - that for the vast majority of people, their iPads will last for years and years before they even think about an upgrade.

    My wife has a second gen iPad which does everything she wants. Its lost its "snappiness" when opening things up, but she genuinely doesn't care as she can still use it to do emails, watch videos and surf the web. I suspect she's not alone.
     
  14. aevan macrumors 68000

    aevan

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    #14
    Guilty until proven innocent?

    It's not up to anyone to prove there is no difference, but rather people who claim there is should provide data.
     
  15. Mr. Dee macrumors 65816

    Mr. Dee

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    #15
    I think its a case of, the new MacBook Pro simply might not work with someones current workflow. When they consider all the dongles they might have to invest in to make it work with their existing setup, they rather return it and wait until a future revision. I can tell you, even with my 2016 MBP, it was frustrating enough for me having to buy a Thunderbolt Ethernet GB adapter, consider whats it like for those who need to buy adapters for all the peripherals and devices.
     
  16. aevan macrumors 68000

    aevan

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    #16
    I understand your frustration - TB3 to TB2 and mini DP to USB-C adapters are often expensive (not to mention the confusion of trying to hook up a mini-DP cable to a TB2 adapter and finding out it doesn't work) but what future revision? They will all have the same USB-C ports (until something new arrives, probably wireless) going forward.

    Also, I don't think people are returning their MacBook Pros because of adapters. This is a big issue only on these forums. Most people just need a few cable changes, maybe one adapter or card reader.
     
  17. The Mercurian macrumors 65816

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    #17
    Why do you change your mind? Did they publish numbers or relative sales or something ?
     
  18. Brookzy macrumors 68040

    Brookzy

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    #18
    A while ago Schiller referenced 20% year-on-year sales increases for the MacBook Pro (but didn't clarify if that was 2016 models vs. 2015 models), but last week's earnings showed an average selling price of Macs increase by around 20% for the quarter as compared with the quarter before the new MacBook Pros came out. If the sales increases were as a consequence of mainly 2015 models being sold, that selling price increase would almost certainly not have materialised.
     
  19. CaptRB, May 12, 2017
    Last edited: May 12, 2017

    CaptRB macrumors 6502a

    CaptRB

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    #19
    I just heard from my dog-walker that 92.3% of all 2016 MBP units have been returned, many covered in blood. It takes time to clean blood from these tighter keyboards and get them onto the site.

    :cool:

    R.
     
  20. The Mercurian macrumors 65816

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    #20
    Eh.... have you considered international pricing and currency fluctuations ? They adjusted upwards the cost of even the old models in Europe and especially so in the UK. I don't think its so simple when you think about worldwide sales. My instinct on this is they are selling more "old" models thatn they would intend and that is why there are many 2016 refurbs and few if any 2015 refurbs (that is unusual where I am - of course varies internationally also).
     
  21. Mr. Dee macrumors 65816

    Mr. Dee

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    #21
    I meant, by the time their workflow can be replaced. So, maybe a new monitor, external storage, printer instead of bandaiding it with numerous dongles.
     
  22. Matt Leaf macrumors regular

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    Feb 5, 2012
    #22
    I'm not totally up on the logic, but if brand new machines are sold at a mark up, then the discounted returns essentially allow Apple to break even (or even profit). So, if a new is traded for new, Apple still wins. Its a guarantee almost all returns will sell also due to their lower cost. The 14 day return policy is actually kinda crazy. A lot of people could just 'try out' the machine for a week or two before getting their money back. In that case it's straight to the refurb store for that model, which may have no perceived problems, but essentially remains a new machine.
     
  23. dyn macrumors 68030

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    #23
    I don't think that is the reason, I'd say this is only because of the American culture that is very materialistic and greedy. People want to own the newest model so they buy it, even if they haven't got the funds to do so. Then after a little while they catch up and understand that what they did isn't smart at all so they return it for a full refund. Another thing that is typical American is that people buy stuff to try it out. When they like it, they keep it, when they don't they send it back.

    These two typical American things make it feasible to have a refurbished shop. Compare it to other cultures and you'll see why many of them do not have refurbished shops.
     
  24. GtrDude macrumors regular

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    Apr 17, 2011
    #24

    Funny you would say that, I was thinking the exact same thing a few months ago.
    Never before seen a computer come out as quickly on the refurbished pages, and so many, as in the case of the 2016 MBP.
    I got a new 2016, not refurb, but I hated it so much that I returned it. Maybe it ended up there too.
    My biggest hate was the keyboard by far but also that huge track pad was constantly giving me right clicks instead of regular clicks. Slowed down my work flow by too much and my fingers were hurting after 6 hours of typing on that junk keyboard, yes I said junk, NOT every pro is a video editor.
    Got a Lenovo X1 Carbon, too expensive in my opinion but I still LOVE that thing.
    Superb keyboard and all the rest. The battery life is not as good as I'd like, especially compared to my 2016 MB Air, but I'm super happy though because I always use the keyboard so much on my computers.
     
  25. Count Blah macrumors 68030

    Count Blah

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    #25
    What exactly are you looking for?
     

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