Apple Store Manager told me that "Maybe the iPhone is not for you."

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by codeoverride, Sep 12, 2012.

  1. codeoverride macrumors member

    Jun 26, 2008
    I just came home from a 2 hour ordeal at the Apple Store, Perimeter Mall in Atlanta, Georgia where the store manager, Kenny told me that "maybe the iPhone is not for you" and that I should deal with what he calls cosmetic problems.

    My issue started a couple of days ago when my iPhone 4S started having problems. I took it in and got it replaced under warranty for what the guy at the genius bar told me was a new phone and not refurbished. This new phone had an issue with light leakage so I took it back and they replaced it. The WIFI in the replacement did not work at all. They replaced it again and the new one sounds like a 10 year old Nokia phone when it vibrates - this is the cosmetic issue that the manager referred to. I called AppleCare and after hours on the phone their best suggestions were:

    1. Get extended warranty ($$$)
    2. Upgrade to iPhone 5 ($$$)
    3. We'll give you a free case to muffle the vibration sound :(

    During the conversation with AppleCare I found out that the replacement phones at the store are indeed refurbished (they just don't use the word refurbished) and that they can't replace ANY phone with a new phone. I don't have the time or patience to go back to the store and play roulette with their refurbished phones. Apple prides itself in building "perfect" products but don't expect your replacement phone to be as good as your original.

    Even scarier, is the fact that there is a limit to the number of replacements you can receive, even if each phone has a serious issue that makes the phone unusable. Buyer beware, when you purchase an iPhone if it's in any way defective straight out of the box you will get a refurbished phone and just pray you're not unlucky enough to receive multiple defective phones because it could mean game over.

    - VERY unhappy Apple customer
  2. THEAnonymous macrumors member

    Sep 17, 2008
    Well on the bright side, at least he didn't tell you that you're holding it wrong.... ;P
  3. bossxii macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    Kansas City
    What was the issue with your "new" iPhone? The original one you took it to have fixed/looked at.
  4. greytmom macrumors 68040


    Jun 23, 2010
    I kind of agree with the manager on this one. Your expectations seem a bit high.

    I know lots of folks who buy refurbs and their experience is flawless. Rather than be upset that it is a refurb, why not jut enjoy using it unless it really does have something wrong with it?
  5. terrywfoster macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2009
    Never had that problem. When I have had to exchange I watch the guy cut the plastic off the box and open up what appeared to me a new phone. I was wrapped and packaged like a new one. Are the refurbs package as new phones?
  6. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    No, they're not. They come from the Genius Bar in reusable, generic cardboard boxes that aren't much bigger than the iPhone itself.

    If you have a problem with your iPhone (actually, any Apple product) during the return window after you purchase it, they'll generally exchange it for a brand new one (which means they're actually returning/refunding your defective one and selling you a brand new one, all in the same transaction).

    But after the return window has passed, you have to go the "warranty repair" route (i.e. Genius Bar). The service replacements the Genius Bar use for iPhones/iPads/iPods may or may not be refurbs. You shouldn't be able to visually tell, because the refurbs come with brand-new exterior shells + brand new batteries. They even have the plastic protective film around the device (but not the box it comes in).
  7. saud0488 macrumors 6502

    Aug 18, 2011
    They are all refurbs...don't let them tell you otherwise.

    If you call and complain enough, they'll usually just send you a brand new one. With the first iPhone I kept having dropped call issues and the call center supervisor sent a brand new one and even suggested that I could sell it and get something else if I wanted to.


    no the ipods come in the cardboard boxes but the iPhones come in those huge black plastic containers. All of the phones, refurb or new, have the plastic on both sides. You can't tell the difference either way. The screens and backs are new, the internals are reused.
  8. ECUpirate44 macrumors 603


    Mar 22, 2010
    Though true, they are the highest quality refurbs I have ever used.
  9. qnssekr macrumors member

    Oct 20, 2011
    If your buying a new phone from apple you should expect a functioning "new" phone from apple. It's not like this person bought this phone on ebay or craigslist.
  10. trevorlc macrumors member

    Jun 13, 2007
    Rather surprised to hear, I've gotten warranty replacement a few times on my iPhone's over the years and never had an issue they always felt, and acted like a brand new phone. (I always assumed they where refurbished)

    I can definitely confirm there is a limit, because earlier this summer I hit it. The short version is my phone started having and audio quality issue that I was able to repeatedly demonstrate to the guinness bar person each time. Each time they replaced it, they did request one time that I not restore anything but my contacts, email avoid installing apps and such for the first few days to see if the issue happened again sure enough it did! around the 5th time I went in he went to replace it, and it stopped because of how many times it had been replaced he went away and came back and magically it was replaced.. (I assume he went and got a manager approval or such)

    In the end it turns out it was a carrier issue... and only after I pointed out to the carrier "Look at my account for the past 3 months, see how its been replaced with a new phone every couple weeks? OBVIOUSLY its not the phone.." They did a "technical investigation" said no results came from it yet MAGICALLY it was fixed.. I feel bad for tearing through so many phones that where all perfectly fine.

    In my experience if you can demonstrate the problem and its not something you have caused they will replace it, with this last issue and every previous issue I have ever had.

    I don't think the apple employee should have said that though I can understand from their point of view that they have replaced your phone several times and each time you have a new different problem, perhaps you might have had better luck if you stayed there at the store and fully inspected every aspect of the phone before signing the paper and leaving? because then technically its note complete I would think...


    How did you complete the exchange process with out wifi? Every time I have done it with the iPhone 4S, they always join it to the store wifi to activate it and then finish the paper work (on the iPad.. so digital paperwork?) and close out the transaction once its all activated, test call made etc
  11. JohnAstro macrumors newbie

    Jul 11, 2008
    why should they need to give you one "out of the box"? you paid for the phone and now your under their limited warranty.
  12. dbit macrumors regular

    May 2, 2006
    I've been through the multiple phone dance over serious problems with the 4s. I didnt care about them being refurbs, I just wanted them to work right. It was honestly a bit of a nightmare. I'm not gonna rush to buy a 5, but really it was an awful experience, just remembering it now. I hope someone comes out with something else groundbreaking before I need to buy next. Apple doesn't have the patent on groundbreaking, right? (they'd like you to thnk they did!)
  13. noupf macrumors member

    Nov 5, 2008
    +1 any device purchased, regardless of brands or manufactureres, I could find something wrong with it. Nothing is perfect, everybody could find a flaw in a consumer device if you look hard enough

    Light leakage, seriously? I'm baffled every time I hear this as a complaint.
  14. PNutts macrumors 601


    Jul 24, 2008
    Pacific Northwest, US
    I'm curious as well.
  15. codeoverride thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 26, 2008
    The original phone had an issue where sometimes the sound would not come back on after going from silent mode back to normal mode.
  16. *Harlow* macrumors member

    Jul 30, 2009
    I had to get a refurbished replacement for my 3Gs that was under warranty. The replacement was a dud. After dealing with several techs, they finally acknowledged it was a non working phone. Just saying..
  17. animatedude macrumors 65816

    Feb 27, 2010
    his response is the perfect response to the Samsung stupid users! Yes the iPhone is not for you................
  18. Shadowbech macrumors 601

    Oct 18, 2011
    Planet iPhone
    You do know that if you are still within 30 days of return period, you can return/exchange it for a brand new one instead of having to go through the genius bar and having to replace it with the replacement unit. This is what I did when I purchased my iphone 4S. Had a yellow tint, went back did a return/exchange, got a brand new one, no issues with the exchanged one.
  19. dbit, Sep 13, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2012

    dbit macrumors regular

    May 2, 2006
    This is a phone that, after paying back subsidies embedded in the carrier plan, costs as much as a computer. It's not like we're talking about swapping walkmans here. I think for the fact that it is a mobile computer with a price tag to match there are things that justify returning them.

    My 4s had the same audio switching type of problem where about 1/4 of calls I could not hear anything on the line. It took a 150 page (now 175) complaint on the Apple Discussions forum before apple admitted and addressed the problem:

    My second phone had a blue blotch on the screen, I'm talking a thumbprint size blue blotch, that was somewhere in the layers and did not go away. The guys at the apple store were surprised and said they've never that one before.

    I've had other problems and spent numerous hours on Apple forums trying to figure these issues out. Many people have swapped 3-4 phones and had distorted/degraded audio, no audio on outgoing calls, yellow/tinted screens, these are not minor issues that you should just live with and thank the almighty apple for providing you the opportunity to pay them the price of a computer for a mobile phone. These are real issues, and Apple's quality control on these phones has ALWAYS kind of sucked. Just because you haven't had them, don't pretend they don't exist for other people.
  20. prvt.donut macrumors 6502a


    Jan 1, 2008
    Maybe the screws holding down the vibration unit aren't 100% tight?

    Just open it up and have a look at what is loose.

    It's not hard, I have taken apart many iPhone 4s, replacing parts and fixing issues.

    With the wealth of parts available direct from China, it's a wonder that anyone actually goes running to apple for such little issues. All the information you could ever need is online, for free.

    Ever since I took mine apart, I feel that it is much more fun owning it! But then I like building my own computers too.
  21. darngooddesign macrumors G3

    Jul 4, 2007
    Atlanta, GA
    All my replacement phones have fixed the issue I came in for so yes the replacement phones are better than the new ones.

    I always check the repplacement phones for issues before leaving the store. I check for dead/bad pixels. Have them call my phone to see if that's alright. Put it in a small canvas bag to check for light leakage. Much easier than scheduling a return trip.

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