My Water Sensor Story

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by kwyn, Oct 23, 2009.

  1. kwyn macrumors regular

    Jan 9, 2009
    I do not know who gets emails sent to, but here is our conversation. I XXX'd out my name, but that is all I edited.The first email is on the bottom.

    ME: I'm guessing you're really not Steve Jobs, which is fine. I was just hoping someone who had a say and cares about their product gets this email. Thanks for taking the time to read this as well, but no-one, but NO-ONE touches my iphone except me!!! It is my baby.

    I am truly discouraged by your response. I guess I know where you stand and where I stand when it comes time for my new purchase. That is fine, but just for you info, and do with it what you will, the phone has, HONESTLY, never been near water aside from being in my pocket when I work out! I TRULY don't know how the sensor could possibly have tripped.

    Perhaps, with iPhone sales going as well as they are now (it was my favorite toy) you don't feel the need to listen to individuals such as myself. I hope the the droid phones or something else are as good or better, as it seems that will be my next purchase.


    --- On Fri, 10/23/09, Steve Jobs <> wrote:

    From: Steve Jobs <>
    Subject: Re: My Experience with Genius at King of Prussia Apple Store (Pennsylvania)
    Date: Friday, October 23, 2009, 9:19 PM


    Unfortunately the moisture sensors don't lie. The are accurate. Maybe someone else took your iPhone near water.


    Sent from my iPhone

    On Oct 23, 2009, at 6:02 PM, XXXXXXXX<> wrote:

    ME: Hi. I am writing because of the experience I had at the Apple Store in the King of Prussia mall (in King of Prussia, PA).

    I have been having intermittent issues with my calls going through, but neither myself nor the other party being able to hear one another. The issues comes and goes, seemingly at random.

    When I brought, my phone to the genius bar to explain the issue, the rep looked at it and said that it has been water damaged. I can assure you that the phone has never been near water! I informed him of this, and although he didn't come out and say it, I felt like he was calling me a "liar." I understand he is following your procedures to look at whatever he looked at, and inform me that he could do nothing.

    The truth is that this iPhone has never been near water! The closest water has ever been is sweat from working out and listening to it at the gym (and I really don't sweat much).

    I have done a lot of reading since and have found tons of complaints similar to mine about the water sensors on your iPhones being somewhat "inaccurate" and faulty.

    Needless to say, I am extremely upset that I have phone that I cannot rely on now, and have a have been accused of not telling the truth, because "the sensor could not have been set off any other way." The amounts of complaints with these water sensors and my experience should raise some red flags for Apple.

    I was told that I would have to pay $199.00 to replace my phone 3G. I was also told that I was eligible for a 3GS for $199.00.

    Regardless, until today I have always spoke highly of my iPhone and have talked no less than 8 friends and my wife into getting iPhones for themselves. When my current contract is up, unless something changes, I feel like I may go with another smartphone. I spend money consistently in the app store too! Check my account information 610-xxx-xxxx. However, I am aware that other smartphones soon to be released will also have "app stores."

    I am hoping there is something you can do to resolve this issue because up until now I have really enjoyed my iPhone and talked it up. I feel somewhat "betrayed" by Apple.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this.


  2. Killquake macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2009
  3. kwyn thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 9, 2009
    Well hopefully the droid phones end up being good so I never have to go back to that store! Really mad!!!!
  4. Killquake macrumors member

    Jun 20, 2009
    I usually get great customer service there. At one point I went I'm due to a problem with the phone and he noticed where I dropped it and completely smashed the volume button in making it useless. He told me he would replace it and told me to not try and do it again. If I were you I would go back and try to get a different genius. They are all different and I have heard of some people who get nice enough ones to replace them despite water damage. Good luck!
  5. DiamondGCoupe macrumors 6502

    Nov 12, 2007
    I had this problem with my last iPhone, it never touched the water either, I attributed it to the fact I took it skiing with me and the moisture from going form the slopes to warm room caused the moisture sensor to trip. Maybe this isn't possible or doesn't seem likely, but I too was given this speech but never had any water near my phone.
  6. mackmgg macrumors 65816


    Nov 2, 2007
    Yeah, when I had a water damaged iPod, the genius told me I could take it apart and do w/e I want. He said that as long as it returns in one piece, it is the same as water damage, and a $119 replacement. :D
  7. Zee23 macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2009
    Well I can't really help you with the whole sensor thing turning red but I have that same problem with my iPhone all the time too and all I have to do to fix it is plug some headphones in then pull them out and it has always fixed it for me. So give that a try next time it happens and see if it fixes it.
  8. Blueline29 macrumors 68020


    Jun 16, 2009
    Indian Rocks Beach, FL
    I don't know if this is what happened to you or not, but I used to wear a pedometer all the time when I went running. Never wore it in the rain, but obviously when you run, you sweat. I took it off one day to find quite a bit of condensation or moisture inside the display. Since you had your iPhone in your pocket while working out, maybe something similar happened.

    Either way, it really sucks. I feel for ya.
  9. -aggie- macrumors P6


    Jun 19, 2009
    Where bunnies are welcome.
    I really don't know what the point of this thread is. Apple put the sensors on/in the iPhone to protect themselves from fraud. Apple uses these sensors to state they won't fix the phone for free if they detect water damage. It's apparent that these sensors may not always be reliable, but for the most part they are. There's been many threads complaining about all this.

    Anyway, the place to complain is not here. BBB? Consumer Reports? Have someone do a reliable test on the sensors to show that they can go off on normal humidity that might be experienced during normal use?
  10. gngan macrumors 68000


    Jan 1, 2009
    What do you expect Apple to do? Give you a new iphone? It's not that i don't believe you but what if everyone tells Apple the same story? It loses the point of having the water senor. It's very UNLIKELY for the water sensor to fail. If it did fail when you receive your iphone then it's still your responsibility to check it because no one can prove who's wrong.
  11. muskratboy macrumors 6502

    Jun 7, 2007
    the sensors may be "accurate" ... if by accurate you mean EXTREMELY sensitive and positioned at the closest possible outside edge. they are almost guaranteed to trip during normal use.

    so sure, they are accurate... they will trip from the slightest moisture.

    and since this is the FIRST thing apple checks on any applecare claim, the hair-trigger sensors are a great way to deny coverage to the vast majority of users after 1 year.

    thanks for nothing, apple. :(
  12. lollicup macrumors regular

    Aug 20, 2009
    OP you are nothing but a drama queen

    a) you e-mailed the CEO of a major corporation ( way to escalate it)
    b) In your email you send him an ultimatum \
    c) In your response e-mail you are a whiny brat
  13. WeegieMac Guest


    Jan 29, 2008
    Glasgow, UK
    Interesting story, but on a side note ... you've got to wonder if Steve actually reads/replies to emails sent to that address or if he's actually hired someone to reply on his behalf.
  14. instaxgirl macrumors 65816


    Mar 11, 2009
    Edinburgh, UK
    Surely there's got to be a company now that makes plugs for the headphone jack and dock connector?

    All these stories are why I keep my iPhone all swaddled in an armband when I work out.
  15. spooky2k macrumors 6502a


    Apr 14, 2008
    There are plenty of companies who do just that! Do an eBay search for them. Just bought myself some for £3.00 with free postage! That's cheap by any standards but extremely cheap when it could save me ££££ in the long run.

    I decided to get them whilst reading all the threads in the forum. Also wondered about them though when I was talking on my phone when it was raining and had to put my finger over the headphone port. I'd recommend everyone get some kind of product like this. Hell, I even hope Apple starts including covers (that will DEFINITELY stop people whining!)
  16. matttye macrumors 601

    Mar 25, 2009
    Lincoln, England
    The problem with the water sensors are that Apple uses them to refuse warranty on things that wouldn't have even been affected by water. People get refused service when their mute switch snaps off because the water sensors are tripped. What the hell?
  17. nealric macrumors member

    Oct 13, 2009
    I don't think any wondering is required. He would spend 24/7/365 replying to emails if that was him.
  18. lemonade-maker macrumors 6502


    Jun 20, 2009
    Just because you don't want to read it doesn't make this an appropriate place to vent. The bbb has no public forum to read stuff like this. I appreciate this sort of info.

    Every phone I've owned since 1999 has had moisture sensor/indicators. They usually trip at some point as I live in the super wet Oregon coast range. The phones have all continued to work. I just never get a warranty as it always is void at some point and a waste of money for me.
  19. kwyn thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 9, 2009
    And in this post you are nothing but an arrogant jerk.

    a) I think when you believe you are correct and discuss the issue with an Apple store drone, nothing gets done. I knew that Steve Jobs doesn't get those emails, I was just trying to get it to an executive and let them know what goes on in the stores

    b) I told him honestly what I would do when a company doesn't treat it's customers the way I'd like to be treated.

    c) My reponse was to simply let them know that the moisture sensors are not 100% fail proof and to believe a sticker over a human being (without looking at the rest of the phone for any evidence of water damage) is ignorant.

    d) Would you have had the balls to say that stuff to me if you were standing next to me at the Apple store or do you only feel safe behind the monitor in Mommy's and Daddy's basement taking your aggressions out on an internet forum because you were shoved in one too many lockers in high school?
  20. lollicup macrumors regular

    Aug 20, 2009
    Yup that's me.

  21. ryguy2303 macrumors 6502


    Jul 27, 2009
    Lol. That's my life story.
  22. fid macrumors newbie

    Apr 12, 2009
    Op, I'm not calling you a liar but I wonder if this even came from the executive assistants that Mr. Jobs has reply for him. Re-read the response. 'the are' it isn't even grammatically correct. I assume they have some pretty 'stock' replies - this sure isn't one of them.
  23. The Californian macrumors 68040

    The Californian

    Jan 17, 2009
    Surfers Paradise
    First of all, I have a hard time believing that this is nothing more than trolling. Look at the obvious, poor grammar in "Steve's response". I'm sure any response that would go out with Steve's name on it would be spelling and grammar checked first. Also, I have never gotten an E-Mail from Steve ( or his e-mail address ) since I usually follow proper escalation procedures and get outstanding results, but I would assume that there would be a lot more to the e-mail than a few run-on sentences. Any e-mails I have received from AppleCare have always had additional resources, and trouble-shooting options within.

    Regardless, the reason Apple had to institute such strict policies with moisture sensors is because of the select group of people that abuse Apple's customer service. You can read hundreds of threads on this forum alone about people exchanging their iPhone because of damage they did to it. It's just a smart business move to protect themselves from fraud by having a strict policy about the moisture sensors.

    I agree that it sucks that these sensors seem to activate for reasons people don't know, but most people can look back and see where they did put their phone at risk for moisture damage. What you have to realize is that we are moving away from these disposable phones than you can abuse the crap out of and they won't be damaged. I used to be horrible with phones, I work in a very active field where I am often running, or crawling into cars that are wrecked, or going into burning buildings ... I have just learned that I have to leave my iPhone in my unit when I am doing these things, it's basically a small computer, would you carry a computer in your pocket at the gym and then complain when it gets water damage? Do you have any idea of what the effects of 0.9% NaCl has on an electronic device? Corrosion, rust ... It's not pretty.

    In no way am I saying this is your fault, I believe Apple should have done a little more education about these moisture sensors, but when it comes down to it ... it's the customers responsibility to protect their device. [/rant]

    I would recommend backpedaling a little bit and calling 1-800-APL-CARE and starting there. Work your way up a little bit and you may see some results. E-mailing Steve Jobs is not the proper route.

    I hope it all works out for you.
  24. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    Suddenly, we all know why things went badly for you in this incident.

    Good luck with your Droid phone, and be sure to keep it in a ziplock bag. It will no doubt be using the same water sensors. :D

    Oh, and I would've had no problem calmly and rationally telling you to your face that asking someone if they have the balls to do x isn't how you resolve an argument and get your way. What are you gonna do, try to beat me up in the middle of an Apple Store?

    Bottom line: humidity can be just as bad for a piece of electronics as water if exposed long enough. If the sensors are red, then somehow they got moist, and if they got moist, there's a good chance something inside the phone got moist too. it could've been left in a bathroom after a hot shower, or in a really humid environment. It sucks, but it happens, and not just to iPhones.

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