Fed up--Am Suing Apple over MB Air Rev A

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by goofyfoot, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. goofyfoot macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2005
    Waldport, Oregon
    If you have or had a MacBook Air Rev A and have had fan noise issues with it, I would appreciate it greatly if would describe the issue and how it was resolved.

    My rev A Air has now been serviced by Apple three times for a loud and annoying fan. (I bought the Air from the Apple store almost a year ago as a refurbished model.) Before I sent it in for the third time, Apple sent me a program to run. I ran the program as they requested, sent back the file, and they said I needed to send the computer in to be fixed for a third time.

    I was very patient and respectful. The Apple rep assured me that if they weren't able to fix it the third time that they would replace my Air. (I can't tell you how many times I've heard the words "Please bear with me" and "I apologize..." from the people at Apple. But always, they blame the decision on "engineering," and claim they have no option but to do what "engineering" says.

    The first time I sent it in, they said they replaced the heat sink. The second time, it was something with the fan. The third time, they replaced the motherboard. After sending it in to Apple three times, my Air remains a cross between a white noise machine and a charcoal briquet.

    Now Apple is claiming the repairs weren't necessarily related to the fan issues, and so they want me to take it by an authorized dealer to verify that there is a problem. I live in a rural area. It's a long drive and I'm fed up.

    I am drawing the line at three repairs for the same issue. I've wasted HOURS dealing with Apple, including two levels of Apple customer service.

    After wasting hours of dealing with Apple for the past 9 months, I feel I have no other recourse but to take them to small claims court. Any advice you have would be much appreciated.
  2. daflake macrumors 6502a

    Apr 8, 2008
    Sorry, but it sounds like you got a lemon. We have had a MBA revA since release day and have only had one issue (hinge broke). It was repaired and is running great. I don't know what to tell you. I would just call and tell them that this is ridiculous and that you want a new machine.
  3. Abyssgh0st macrumors 68000


    Jan 12, 2009
    I feel your frustration, but I'm afraid a small claims court won't help much.

    My best suggestion is to call 1-800-MY-APPLE one more time, and without being rude or abrasive explain your problem to them in the detail you did here, and eventually ask for a supervisor.
  4. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003
    Some have had success sending an email to sjobs@apple.com

    If you take that route, write a well thought out and calm email. You'll get action that way.
  5. mcpryon2 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 12, 2008
    Yeah, I know all too well how annoying it can be. Have you flat-out requested a replacement since it's been repair so much? I've been there and it's worth asking.

    As far as small claims court...you think you're wasting hours of time NOW.

    I'd check into any lemon laws your state may have. I thought Apple's own policy was if they have to repair a machine three times for the same reason they'd replace it. Again, I know how frustrating it can be. I'd suggest have a game plan when you call and politely hold your ground for a replacement.
  6. goofyfoot thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2005
    Waldport, Oregon
    Thanks, but I've been polite each and every time I've spoken with Apple. I've also been pretty calm, until they changed their story and said I need to take it to a dealer after they had me send it in to them three times.

    Even then, I was still respectful, but I did ask them to stop apologizing to me because that's getting really old. In my business, if there's a problem, I apologize but I also fix the problem.

    Then again, I don't have billions in the bank. Maybe I should learn to just apologize when there's a problem but do nothing to actually fix the situation.
  7. goofyfoot thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2005
    Waldport, Oregon
    Maybe that's why the higher-level customer service person I spoke to for the first time today put me on hold for several minutes, and then claimed that even though I sent the computer in three times to have the fan noise issue fixed, that this doesn't mean that each of the three repairs was for the fan noise issue.

    This sounded really bizarre, because I've spent a lot of time on the phone with Apple people, and it's the first time any of them said anything like this.
  8. LinMac macrumors 65816

    Oct 28, 2007
    I have had a lot of luck with sjobs@apple.com when I hit a brick wall with Apple's normal customer service.

    Three things that worked for me:

    1) Drop all sense of entitlement and be civilly frustrated. The email should be polite, very detailed (not just wordy), and written in proper English.

    2) Never mention a lawsuit or any other threats of any kind. They're very good about helping so just give them the details.

    3) Be flexible. They might ask you to take it into the Apple store at their request even though you've done it 3 separate times. Do it anyway.

    I've had faulty machines replaced and annoying problems fixed using those three rules. Might be worth a look. :D
  9. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    I bought the original MBA. It was JUNK! I have said this time and time again. It was not what customers expect from a Mac. It should NEVER had been released. Those who were happy with the MBA were those who bought it refurbished for $999 to $1299 NOT us who paid $1799 to $3099. I knew over 20 people who bought the original MBA and ONLY ONE still owned it a year later! That's SICK! Apple really deserved a lawsuit over that junk. I believe that Apple should have swapped all the original MBA's free of charge for a rev B MBA.

    Additionally, the original MBA cost Apple dearly. It made me not believe in Steve Jobs anymore. It made me read many reviews and try everything myself. Because my original MBA wasn't ANYTHING like a Mac. It wouldn't do simple tasks. Wouldn't playback any video without overheating and shutdowns. It was meant for the "business pro" type people and it was a massive failure. That caused Apple to reduce prices drastically and dump the originals. So the original retail buyers all suffered with an MBA that didn't operate like a Mac. It didn't just work. It only failed the user time and time again.

    I understand why some were happy with it after paying $999 for theirs. We have different expectations when price and market factors are priced in. At $1799 to $3099, people expected the MBA to operate like a MacBook yet be super lightweight and fun. At $999 to $1299, people knew it wasn't capable as a MacBook but were willing to forgive the inability to function as a Mac to look cool and use for writing Word docs and sending emails from it.

    Apple really got it right with the rev B, but it had already ruined the brand MBA! It's sad, because the rev B/C MBAs have been really nice and could have sold 10x their sales numbers had this been the "original" MBA. Apple shot itself in the foot. I am certain they have suffered for screwing over their users with the MBA. It could have been a revolutionary Mac if it had been released in original state in October 2008 with the Nvidia GPU. If they put 4 GB RAM in it, probably would sell 5x as many.

    I will never give Apple the benefit of the doubt again because of the original MBA. I trusted Apple and Steve Jobs and what they were selling until I bought my original MBA. Now, Apple has to prove itself before I will buy anything. It's sad, because they really lost a lot of credibility and goodwill with its customers over the original MBA.

    I applaud anyone with the courage/money to bring a lawsuit. I would gladly appear in any court and reveal my distain for Apple over the original MBA and how worthless the machine was and how Apple implied it would work just like any other Mac, leaving out core shutdowns, lockups, and overheating... paired with spinning beachballs from Hell!

    All companies make bad decisions, but the problem is when companies knowingly take advantage of customers just because it spent money developing a product... That was obviously the case. You cannot tell me nobody at Apple realized the original MBA was a pile of junk! Heck, the level of complaints on forums and at Apple service desks was enormous. Apple should have rewarded all the original MBA buyers with a real operable rev B MBA. But Apple thought about the shareholders and not its customers who were MORE IMPORTANT and needed a show of goodwill from Apple to restore their good faith as a company selling products to a loyal fan base. The situation was and is sad. It's too bad that people couldn't listen to the overwhelming problems and not buy the MBA at any price to show Apple it needs to fix the problems not just destroy the value for all and DUMP its bad products.
  10. GeekGirl* macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2009
    Buffalo, NY
    My A was much better then my B and C!
  11. goofyfoot thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2005
    Waldport, Oregon
    While I agree with you about rev A of the MB Air, I don't agree with bringing Mr. Jobs into this, and I would still rather deal with Apple than Sony or Dell.

    If I had $1500 to burn, I'd sell this one on EBay for cheap and buy a new rev C (am more than a little weary of Apple refurbs after this experience). But I had to borrow the money to buy this one, and after all of the hours I've calmly, patiently and politely spent dealing with Apple about this, I'd simply like a computer that can competently use the software it shipped with.
  12. daflake macrumors 6502a

    Apr 8, 2008

    Now you know two... Ours runs like a champ and has never had an issue. Even video streams well... It will be owned for a few more years.
  13. jtorseydunn macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2009
    In one hand I understand that you should have a working machine. On the other, you deserve what happened. You bought a refurbished machine, obviously it had issues. Thats why it was refurbished in the first place. If you wanted a perfect machine you would have bought a new one. Hope you learned your lesson.
  14. NT1440 macrumors G5


    May 18, 2008
    You don't know much about customer service do you? Each of the people you talked to were merely a drone in the overall system, they have no power, so there is no point in getting annoyed at them just trying to do their job.

    As for the machine itself, you waited 9 months worths of repairs and didn't demand a refund or replacement? :confused::confused:
  15. NT1440 macrumors G5


    May 18, 2008

    Refurbished items, in any industry, are ones that are returned for one reason or another, repaired, tested and confirmed to be in working order. Thats why they aren't merely sold as-is. This has very little to do with the fact that its refurbished, it was obviously a lemon from the very beginning.
  16. jaw04005 macrumors 601


    Aug 19, 2003
    I too will chime in on e-mailing Steve Jobs. I’ve had one major and two minor issues solved that way.

    You’ll get a call immediately from executive relations and that representative will help you throughout the rest of repair/return/replacement process. He/She will also stay in contact with any other parts of Apple you’ll be dealing with (engineering, Apple Store, etc).

    I’m not actually sure how Jobs’ e-mail works. I don’t know if he actually checks it and forwards the e-mails to the appropriate departments or what. One would think someone checks it for him, but then again there are members of this forum that have had personal replies regarding various issues from MobileMe to the lack of firewire in the MacBooks.

    Needless to say, e-mailing Jobs should be a last resort. And it sounds like you’ve reached that level of severity.
  17. iSee macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2004
    No. Those are not the terms under which Apple sells refurbs.

    Read about it here: http://store.apple.com/Catalog/US/Images/apple_certified.html

    Basically, Apple is saying:
    Apple Certified Refurbished Products == good as new


    Edit to add my 2 cents:

    OP, I'd try going through customer relations to get a replacement... Small claims court is a bigger PITA than what you've gone through so far so I think it's worth it to keep trying to avoid that, at least for now.
    I guess I'd be willing to try one more repair under the promise of a no-hassels replacement if the issue isn't resolved. I know you've already gone down that route, but ultimately I think this will be easier than small claims court and you'll get the same result.

    By the way, I've been there with an iBook G3 whose logic board failed five times. I actually didn't want a replacement at first because I needed to be able to boot to OS 9 (long story, don't ask :) ). Once I no longer needed to boot to OS 9, I insisted on, and got, a G4 iBook as a replacement -- an awesome, trouble-free mac which basically sold me on switching to Mac full-time.

    Good luck
  18. rotorblade69 macrumors regular

    Jul 1, 2006
    North West Georgia

    This is exactly the way I feel!!
    I have a G4 Cube, we had a g3 Ibook and g4 imac, and currently daily use is a G5 isight iMac. Never had any problems with them in the first 3 years of ownership. The Cube has had graphics card problems since 2008, the g3 Ibook was sold to a friend of my dad in 2003. The g4 imac was sold to the cable guy for a hefty sum in 2006. The G5 iMac is beginning to over heat a lot now and I think it may go due to some problem I remember reading about them with heat and the logic board but its still ticking. All problems are when the computer was 3 or 4 years old. If something goes wrong 4 or 5 years down the road well ive gotten my use out of it, and its old tech.

    If I had the money when the Air was released I would have bought one. Bought an NFA UZi right before the air was released and had a lot of cash tied up in it. Boy am I glad I didn't. Kept using the iMac and shooting the new suppressed UZI and was very happy. :cool:
    Months later reading the post stating no youtube vid pretty much sealed the fate of new Apple stuff for me. I really want a i7 iMac but will wait till the next refresh for that model. We will see. Would like a Rev. C air but might as well wait for a refresh or a change and if its changed then were back at waiting for another refresh for an air. So at best what a year and a half maybe before I get an air. Maybe even 2. Yes apple screwed the pooch and bought the farm all in one with Rev a Air. Now they are paying for it. Sad fact is if they even release an Air 15 or even 17 they will find some that "remember" and won't buy.

    You should make them pay. Get them to give you a Refurbished Rev b at the very least.
  19. Mactagonist macrumors 65816

    Feb 5, 2008
    NYC - Manhattan
    What actually goes on in your head? :confused:

  20. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    That's a SICK reply. You need to get a clue about the warranty and performance of a NORMAL refurbished Mac. This comes down to the original MBA being junk and should have never been released.
  21. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    Quite honestly, I don't believe that ANY original MBA's were capable. With a hot Merom CPU, piece of crap Intel integrated graphics, a PATA drive controller, confined space, and poor cooling system by overworked system there is NO original MBA that could possibly do what a rev B MBA can do. And that is the standard by which ALL Macs are EXPECTED to operate by. The original MBA simply couldn't perform as a "Mac."
  22. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    As with most things, once you go and sue Apple, they have every right to basically void the normal warranty service in their computer system.

    This isn't getting rid of the warranty, but from the point you sue you can no longer get normal warranty service ... it will need to be handled between your lawyers and their lawyers.

    So if the machine dies completely the day after they are served, it might take 6 months for a repair. And you'll need to fight to get the 6 months added to the end of the warranty.

    Even at that point, sometimes all a lawsuit will do is make Apple strictly adhere to the warranty ... so no exchanges, just repairs. No compensation, since that isn't part of the warranty. And pain and suffering for dealing with warranty service is par for the course unless you can prove they are acting in bad faith.
  23. cfitz7111 macrumors 6502

    Jun 8, 2008
    I for one can not wait until Judge Judy hears this case, it has that much merit to it.
  24. daflake macrumors 6502a

    Apr 8, 2008
    Because you are comparing two different versions... If you do that to anything the newer one will always (most of the time) look better. The air was cutting edge when it came out. My wife wanted it for portability, e-mail and word processing with the occasional video being watched. If you bought that laptop thinking that it was going to be a gaming rig (during the revision A run) you were fooling yourself and I even told her that. It is also the reason that I bought a regular Macbook. Hers runs great and she loves it. Video does not skip as some have reported and even with SL it is a nice little laptop. Sorry, ours is great.
  25. zedsdead macrumors 68040

    Jun 20, 2007
    Call back Applecare, and REFUSE to setlle without getting a replacement (which should be a new Air). I had to replace 3 REV A's (with 2 repairs on the third model), and when it needed another repair Apple tried to pull the same crap (one more time and THEN we will replace). I then went through two REV B's, and because of the line issue I forced Apple to exchange it for a Macbook Pro. It just takes time, do not back down.

    Don't accept their nonsense. Keep asking for the person's supervisor until they cave. They eventually will. Hit on the following points:

    - Widespread hardware issues with the Air (line, hinge, fans, trackpad that scratches the bezel, etc...).
    - Explain that when you buy a top of line product, you expect it to not break three times.

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