Replacement Watch

Jal217

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 28, 2015
157
221
Hi Everyone!

So I was just sent a replacement Apple Watch because my Taptic Engine went. So I have what looks like a brand new watch. The information that came with it just says "new or refurbished." I'm just curious, is there a way to tell which it is?
 

JayLenochiniMac

macrumors G5
Nov 7, 2007
12,815
2,354
New Sanfrakota
No, but it's most likely remanufactured at this point. The only time when it's safe to say it's brand new rather than remanufactured is right after launch when not enough time has passed to build up a stock of remanufactured units.
 

Gav2k

macrumors G3
Jul 24, 2009
9,218
1,584
No, but it's most likely remanufactured at this point. The only time when it's safe to say it's brand new rather than remanufactured is right after launch when not enough time has passed to build up a stock of remanufactured units.
Not true. Any units that do not meet the set standard will be remanufactured so referbs will be available from the off.
 

aristobrat

macrumors G5
Oct 14, 2005
12,244
1,312
I'm curious too.

If it's like how Apple handles iPhones/iPads/iPods refurbs, it will probably be hard to tell. Those refurbs come out of the box with the same plastic shrink-wrap around them, and have new exterior shells, so refurbs should look the same as new units. New batteries too, so you can look at the number of cycles and try to figure out of its new or not.

A few years ago, you could tell some refurbs by the serial number, but I think even that's next-to-impossible to do anymore.
 

JayLenochiniMac

macrumors G5
Nov 7, 2007
12,815
2,354
New Sanfrakota
Not true. Any units that do not meet the set standard will be remanufactured so referbs will be available from the off.
Huh? You mean a subset of units that they catch at factory due to quality control which they rebuild before they find their way into retail or white boxes? That's still considered "new."

People think of "refurbished/remanufactured" in the sense that the innards was once a retail unit in its former life and given a brand new case, screen and battery.
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A few years ago, you could tell some refurbs by the serial number, but I think even that's next-to-impossible to do anymore.
Correct. They stopped doing that around the time they sold the iPhone 4 or so (don't remember the exact time).
 

Newtons Apple

Suspended
Mar 12, 2014
22,764
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Jacksonville, Florida
I'm curious too.

If it's like how Apple handles iPhones/iPads/iPods refurbs, it will probably be hard to tell. Those refurbs come out of the box with the same plastic shrink-wrap around them, and have new exterior shells, so refurbs should look the same as new units. New batteries too, so you can look at the number of cycles and try to figure out of its new or not.

A few years ago, you could tell some refurbs by the serial number, but I think even that's next-to-impossible to do anymore.
If it had the battery changed the cycles should be low or zero. Either way Apple is quite able to make the battery say what ever.

I do not think we know for sure what Apple does to a refurb before they sell it. They could be using the SS case parts . . .we do not know.
 
Last edited:

Gav2k

macrumors G3
Jul 24, 2009
9,218
1,584
Huh? You mean a subset of units that they catch at factory due to quality control which they rebuild before they find their way into retail or white boxes? That's still considered "new.".
Nope. There was a video a while back on apples quality control and it was in that they explained units that don't meet the qc are remanufactured for that purpose.
 

JayLenochiniMac

macrumors G5
Nov 7, 2007
12,815
2,354
New Sanfrakota
Nope. There was a video a while back on apples quality control and it was in that they explained units that don't meet the qc are remanufactured for that purpose.
While they may be true, that's not what people generally think of refurbished/remanufactured units, which they consider as having been in someone else's hand in a former life. I'd assume most members do not discriminate between new and those that didn't meet quality control at factory and remanufactured as a result.
 

JayLenochiniMac

macrumors G5
Nov 7, 2007
12,815
2,354
New Sanfrakota
If it had the battery changed the cycles should be low or zero. Either way Apple is quite able to make the battery say what ever.
All refurbished/remanufactured units get a brand new battery so it's not a method to discriminate between new and remanufactured.

I do not think we know for sure what Apple does to a refurb before they sell it. They could be using the SS case parts . . .we do not know.
We do know what they do to refurbished iDevices that they do sell through the Certified Refurbished store (they do not sell refurbished iPhones or AW):

Apple Certified Refurbished
We test and certify all Apple refurbished products and include a 1-year warranty.
All refurbished iPod models also include a brand new battery and outer shell.
http://www.apple.com/shop/browse/home/specialdeals/ipod

Apple Certified Refurbished
We test and certify all Apple refurbished products and include a 1-year warranty.
All refurbished iPad models also include a brand new battery and outer shell.
http://www.apple.com/shop/browse/home/specialdeals/ipad
 

AndrewR23

macrumors 68040
Jun 24, 2010
3,850
1,002
New ones will have a model number beginning with M.

Refurbs or whatever you wanna call it begin with N.
 

AndrewR23

macrumors 68040
Jun 24, 2010
3,850
1,002
I would take that with a grain of salt because people have reported getting replacement iPhones that start with M and retail box iPhones that start with N.
Never seen that before.

The first letter in the model number represents the source of the device. Currently, there are four known possible choices:

  • "F": refurbished unit
  • "M": retail unit
  • "N": replacement unit
  • "P": personalized (engraved) unit

https://www.theiphonewiki.com/wiki/Models



I chatted up apple and they told me this is true. No brand new devices will begin with N. Every brand new Apple device I own says M on the back of the box. And every Apple device I've replaced says N.
 

JayLenochiniMac

macrumors G5
Nov 7, 2007
12,815
2,354
New Sanfrakota
Never seen that before.

The first letter in the model number represents the source of the device. Currently, there are four known possible choices:

  • "F": refurbished unit
  • "M": retail unit
  • "N": replacement unit
  • "P": personalized (engraved) unit

https://www.theiphonewiki.com/wiki/Models



I chatted up apple and they told me this is true. No brand new devices will begin with N. Every brand new Apple device I own says M on the back of the box. And every Apple device I've replaced says N.
Didn't you receive a replacement iPhone 6 that began with M? It's not exactly set in stone because despite what MR's Refurbished Apple Product buying guide says (which links to your own thread as a source), people have reported getting M as replacement iPhones and N as retail iPhones.

Apple's use of "P" and "F" is less clear, but "N" and "M" appear to be regularly used based on our research of refurbished iPhones.
 
Last edited:

Julien

macrumors G4
Jun 30, 2007
11,140
3,827
Atlanta
2 rules to keep in mind:

1) If you can not perceive any difference then there is NO difference to you

2) Apple refurbs are more closely inspected and tested than the original manufactured device and is still fully covered by Apple's warranty and :apple:Care (also see rule number 1)
 
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Jal217

macrumors regular
Original poster
Oct 28, 2015
157
221
Never seen that before.

The first letter in the model number represents the source of the device. Currently, there are four known possible choices:

  • "F": refurbished unit
  • "M": retail unit
  • "N": replacement unit
  • "P": personalized (engraved) unit

https://www.theiphonewiki.com/wiki/Models



I chatted up apple and they told me this is true. No brand new devices will begin with N. Every brand new Apple device I own says M on the back of the box. And every Apple device I've replaced says N.
My brand new Apple Watch from a day 1 pre order started with F so this doesn't always hold true.
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2 rules to keep in mind:

1) If you can not perceive any difference then there is NO difference to you

2) Apple refurbs are more closely inspected and tested than the original manufactured device and is still fully covered by Apple's warranty and :apple:Care (also see rule number 1)
That's why I said just curious and not "I need to know"
[doublepost=1461164865][/doublepost]
I'm curious too.

If it's like how Apple handles iPhones/iPads/iPods refurbs, it will probably be hard to tell. Those refurbs come out of the box with the same plastic shrink-wrap around them, and have new exterior shells, so refurbs should look the same as new units. New batteries too, so you can look at the number of cycles and try to figure out of its new or not.

A few years ago, you could tell some refurbs by the serial number, but I think even that's next-to-impossible to do anymore.
Yea it's actually really impressive how perfect it came. I almost think it came in nicer packaging than the original watch. In addition the Digital Crown is way more firm than my old one, the speaker seems better quality, and the problem I sent it in for is no more so I'm pleased!
 
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AndrewR23

macrumors 68040
Jun 24, 2010
3,850
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My brand new Apple Watch from a day 1 pre order started with F so this doesn't always hold true.
[doublepost=1461164748][/doublepost]
That's why I said just curious and not "I need to know"
[doublepost=1461164865][/doublepost]
Yea it's actually really impressive how perfect it came. I almost think it came in nicer packaging than the original watch. In addition the Digital Crown is way more firm than my old one, the speaker seems better quality, and the problem I sent it in for is no more so I'm pleased!
Your brand new watch model number did not begin with F. The serial number did. Like every other single Apple Watch ever made.