Apple not honoring warranty on iPhones that are not in an active service plan

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by zub3qin, Oct 15, 2007.

  1. zub3qin macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #1
    Apple is taking a hit in the media, and this is not going to help.
    If you have an iPhone that is defective or not functional, Apple WILL NOT honor any hardware warranty if you do not have an active AT&T subscription.
    So, if you had a plan, and cancelled- your phone-less iPhone is no longer covered if it fails in the normal 1 year warranty period.
    Here is the link:
    http://www.tuaw.com/2007/10/15/apple-limits-iphone-service-to-atandt-account-holders/

    Apple limits iPhone service to AT&T account holders

    Posted Oct 15th 2007 10:40PM by Erica Sadun
    Filed under: Apple Corporate, Bad Apple, iPhone

    If you buy an iPhone and don't have AT&T service, it looks like Apple will be treating your iPhone as an iPod--with no 2 year service guarantee or even, for that matter, a 90-day service plan. Jake Dugard cancelled his iPhone account receiving poor AT&T reception. When his phone stopped working properly shortly after, he was told that Apple would not service his phone. Repairs depend on an active agreement.

    It makes sense to me that Apple offers a much longer service time for under-contract iPhones than it does for iPods, but it doesn't make any sense that a no-contract iPhone isn't covered at least under the iPod's one complimentary support incident within the first 90 days of product ownership.

    Dugard and/or his friends apparently recorded his service calls but, as an update, has now removed them for the time being from public view. If you followed the earlier link and cannot find them, that is why.

    Thanks to iPhoned Home

    Update: Quoting the relevant text: "iPhone comes with one year of hardware repair service coverage and up to two years of technical support during the time your wireless agreement remains active with AT&T."
     
  2. clevin macrumors G3

    clevin

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    #2
    this is indeed not a good thing, but what do I expect from apple+ATT? Im sure somebody will sue for this.
     
  3. zub3qin thread starter macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #3
    Apple is really making some bad moves here. Things even Microsoft would not do.

    Maybe it is not fair, but I use a simple Mac analogy.

    1) Imagine if Apple sold you a Mac but then told people that installing their own software on it that it is a violation.
    2) Imagine if Apple sent out a firmware upgrade to the Mac which also functioned as a virus, breaking the Macs that had software installed.
    3) Imagine if Apple told people that if you didn't pay for a .Mac account monthly, you will not be covered if anything is not working on the Mac. The fan. The display. The harddrive. The whole warranty is voided if you are not paying the monthly subscription.

    This last one is problematic to Apple, and while I am not a lawyer, I sense that it will not be upheld in a court. Before everyone starts screaming, "You knew the terms of the agreement before you bought the iPhone," I believe it doesn't matter. I think hardware warranties are independent of any subscription fees people pay for another service.
     
  4. Geffen macrumors 6502

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    Michigan
    #4
    Oh yes i can see another lawsuit coming on this one as well.
     
  5. gkarris macrumors 604

    gkarris

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    #5
    Hello!

    This is what Steve's been talking about. No ACTIVE AT&T account, no iPhone or support for you!!!

    The next thing is that iTunes will do a product verification on connection to an iPhone or iPod Touch and if the iPhone is not active on AT&T or either devices have been hacked, iBrick 4U...

    (Touch owners will have to reset their devices to the new firmware and hack the whole thing over again. iPhone users won't be able to until the hacks and unlock are ready, but I don't think a hacked device will be able to hook up to iTunes unless that is hacked as well...)
     
  6. carfac macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    #6
    Some of the other lawsuits were questionable. I think they have stepped in it big time now.

    But more importantly, how is John Q Public going to view this? "Oh, Apple- they do not stand behind their product," and then they move on.
     
  7. carfac macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    #7
    I do not think they are that stupid (though sometimes I wonder.) But if they start randomly bricking phones w/o user intervention, they will have an avalanche of very valid lawsuits- all of which they would loose.

    That would make Bill Gates look like Man of the Year.
     
  8. zub3qin thread starter macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #8
    No iPhone... maybe OK
    No support.. maybe OK
    No warranty? I don't think this is OK. A hardware warranty should have NOTHING to do with a subscription. If you buy a landline cordless telephone, and you don't have a local or long-distance provider, if your phone keys all fall out or the speaker isn't working 3 days after you buy it, your warranty should and does still cover you.
     
  9. zub3qin thread starter macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #9
    It appears that there is already the start of a lawsuit avalanche.
    And while Apple stock is higher than ever, their PR is taking a massive hit.

    LA Times and Businessweek today have stories on Apple losing their fanbase by letting down lots of customers with their recent iPhone behavior. Other major media outlets had similar stories over the past week. Some have even compared Apple to MS.
     
  10. gkarris macrumors 604

    gkarris

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    #10
    Steve and AT&T are out to change all that.

    Here's the quote from the AppleCare for iPhone page:

    If I remember correctly, the iPhone box said the same for the 1 year support...
     
  11. Sobe macrumors 68000

    Sobe

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    #11
    The lengths to which people go to deceive themselves that something is other than that which every shred of common sense tells them it is constantly amazes and surprises me.

    Yes, boys and girls, not only are you tied to an AT&T contract, the license agreement and contract actually mean something!
     
  12. zub3qin thread starter macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #12
    Just because Apple prints a license agreement and contract, doesn't make them legally binding or valid.
    I won't argue with you over support over an unlocked phone, or even an Apple bricked iPhone that was running a 3rd party app. But I think Apple is going to be hit hard by the courts over their stance not to cover hardware defects with a warranty unless you keep paying for an AT&T plan. The case mentioned in the link above was someone who bought an iPhone, got no service in his area, cancelled his AT&T plan- and then had a hardware malfunction. He did nothing illegal. Apple should cover his phone for 1 year parts and labor.
     
  13. DeaconGraves macrumors 65816

    DeaconGraves

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    #13
    Just curious, but does anyone know of any other cell phone manufacturer that will service a product that does not have some kind of service tied to it?

    I'm wondering if there's some kind of practical reason for this. Still crummy though.

    Also, do we even have all the facts of this case? How did he know his phone had stopped working properly if he had disconnected his service? I'm guessing he unlocked it. If anyone has any facts to disprove this though I'll stick my foot in my mouth happily. :p
     
  14. Sobe macrumors 68000

    Sobe

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    #14
    He should activate his AT&T service then take his phone in for repairs and get it fixed as per the contractual agreement.

    People can't just make up the rules as they go. Contracts mean things. They really do.
     
  15. zub3qin thread starter macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

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    #15
    1) AT&T doesn't cover the warranty, Apple does. If you have a Motorola or Nokia, they cover the warranty on the device-- whether or not you are in contract with your cell phone company.
    2) The guy's phone still worked as an iPod and Safari on Wifi, as do all activated and then canceled iPhones. Perhaps the screen or the speaker died-- both can be evaluated without a functioning phone.
     
  16. DeaconGraves macrumors 65816

    DeaconGraves

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    #16
    Most uneducated comment ever.

    Ever bought a plane ticket, gone to a sporting event? Read your ticket. You've just agreed to a contract. It's also why every piece of mac hardware comes with a warranty agreement in the box and every piece of software has agreement you have to agree to before you install it.

    It doesn't mean that Apple's decisions are right or good for PR, but they can still do it.
     
  17. zub3qin thread starter macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

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    #17
    I'm not going to engage in name calling- so if you want to call me uneducated, go right ahead.

    But you are wrong. Believe it or not, a contract, even if signed by two individuals, isn't always legally binding. Laws of a state outweigh whatever is stated in a contract.

    For instance, if you and your neighbor signed a contract stating you could cut off his head if he stepped foot on your side of the fence, and you actually did decapitate him, you'd be arrested immediately. Why? Because the state's laws take precedent over any contract you two agreed to. It doesn't have to be something criminal either. Anything that the state makes law takes precedent.

    A lawyer will know better than I, but I think there are many stringent state laws revolving around consumer protection product warranties and they almost always favor the consumer. I suspect there are many states that would find the Apple contract non-binding.

    And since you are fond of quoting the Apple warranty, in all CAPS at the end of the iPhone warranty it states:
    "THIS WARRANTY GIVES YOU SPECIFIC LEGAL RIGHTS, AND YOU MAY ALSO HAVE OTHER RIGHTS WHICH VARY FROM STATE TO STATE... SOME STATES DO NOT ALLOW LIMITATIONS ON HOW LONG AN IMPLIED WARRANTY LASTS, SO THIS LIMITATION MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU...If any term (of this warranty) is held to be illegal or unenforceable, the legality or enforceability of the remaining terms shall not be affected or impaired."
     
  18. Sobe macrumors 68000

    Sobe

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    #18
    To play devil's advocate a bit, I think in some cases the sporting stadiums are granted immunity from injury liability via state law.
     
  19. carfac macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    #19
    Lets hope that the agreement and contract DOES mean something- then Apple WILL get there asses sued off.

    From the Apple Website:

    In English, you get one year HARDWARE, and the technical support (that is when you call them up on a phone) for as long as you have an ATT contract, up to two years. That "and" in there separates the two clauses. Hardware is one year, no ATT required; the phone support is dependent on ATT contract.

    Not clear enough for you?

    Try reading the full Apple 1 year hardware warranty here:

    http://images.apple.com/legal/warranty/iphone.pdf

    Strange, NO requirement in there AT ALL for an ATT contract.

    If Apple is denying hardware warranty service because of no ATT contract, Apple (not this user) is breaking the contract, and Apple will rightly get their butts sued off.
     
  20. carfac macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    #20
    Neither can Apple.
     
  21. carfac macrumors 65816

    carfac

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    #21
    Not a well stated comment, but your response goes too far the other way, too. Read the actual warranty (see the link above) and you will see that Apple even states in the warranty (paraphrased):

    You may have additional rights not disclosed in this agreement depending on local law...

    So, even if it spelled out in a EULA or warranty, that document is not the final word on what your actual rights are.
     
  22. DeaconGraves macrumors 65816

    DeaconGraves

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    #22
    Good eye. I missed that.

    Hopefully this is just the case of a stupid customer support rep (still not good pr for apple but better than a lawsuit). I'd be interested to see if the guy tried again to get a different support rep or maybe went to an apple store.
     
  23. sblasl macrumors 6502a

    sblasl

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    #23
    With a large corporate legal department that I am sure Apple, Inc. has, don't you think that all of the contracts & warranties are reviewed ad nauseam before being printed?
     
  24. chr1s60 macrumors 68000

    chr1s60

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    California
    #24
    Why should they? You are not honoring the requirements of service that go along with owning an iPhone. So it is bad if they don't hold up their end of the deal but you aren't holding up your end and there is no problem? Sounds hypocritical to me.
     
  25. Sobe macrumors 68000

    Sobe

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    #25
    I ate an apple and a pear while I was watching tv.

    Was I only watching tv while I was eating the pear?

    No, because it modifes both objects not just the one immediately preceeding it.

    It took me 5 minutes to do my homework and ten minutes to read the book while I waited for an hour in doctor's office.

    Did I only read the book while I waited in the doctor's office?

    No, it applies to both of the verb/object pairs in question.

    What are the time frames?

    2 years for hardware and 1 year for technical support.

    What is the modifying factor?

    During the time your wireless agreement remains active with AT&T.

    Just because you can fit the words into a twisted definition to meet your philosophical needs doesn't make it true.
     

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