That's it, I'm done with Apple

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by smiddlehurst, Apr 27, 2009.

  1. smiddlehurst macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    #1
    Over the weekend I had the swollen battery issue on a MBP 17". The machine's outside of warranty but is less than 2 years old so I wasn't expecting an issue. Call up customer support and get told that there's nothing they can do. Argue my way through to a customer service representative and, after many go-rounds, get told that while there has been a history of failure of this particular part because my serial number isn't listed they can't offer me an exception. Oh, but they CAN offer me a £21 discount on the price of a new battery despite there being no official fault on the 17" machines.

    Right, so let me get this straight, a fault that's been around for 3 years+ on a range of machines and has resulted in several battery recalls over the years is a one off in my case becuase my serial number isn't listed in the affected batches? Bull. Talking of which tech support basically said that the battery is at the end of its service life which is why it's swollen up!

    I'm absolutely gutted at the moment, I've fallen in love with Apple's software over the last few years but the hardware and customer service is absolutely abismal. EVERY piece of hardware I've bought from iPod nano to iPod Touch to Macbook to 15" MBP to 17" MBP has had serious issues, the stores won't even talk to you about a fault if you don't book a genius appointment 3 days ahead of time, you get treated like an idiot on the phone and they won't own up to a manufacturing fault when it's clearly a systematic problem but WILL give a 'discount' despite it being a 'consumable' part and therefore not their problem.

    Fact is, I just can't justify spending any more money on hardware that's this flakey, espeically considering the vast sums involved. I love the design, I love the OS, I love the way it 'just works' and the thought of leaving all that behind is gut wrenching. But if this is how they treat their customers I've got no other choice but to look elsewhere. Worst part is they've probably just lost another grand and a half off our family as my wife was also looking at getting a 15" MBP over the summer and I was starting to look around for a replacement machine as well for purchase in the winter.
     
  2. barkmonster macrumors 68020

    barkmonster

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2001
    Location:
    Lancashire
    #2
    Batteries die, mobile batteries die, iPod batteries die. They're components of a system with a finite number of usage cycles. A quick google search...

    http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=e...ttery&btnG=Search&meta=cr=countryUK|countryGB

    ...and you can buy a new one for £64. I don't know how much Apple charge for the batteries themselves but you can bet even £64 is more than worth it if you get a working system out of it.

    My 4 year old phone needs charging more these days, my first generation iPod Nano needs charging more these days, it's just expected that "re-chargeable" doesn't equate to "infinite usage" and the fact it's user replaceable would be a plus point for most people.
     
  3. smiddlehurst thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #3
    Yes batteries die, I understand that thanks. But they do NOT swell up until they're pushing so hard on the underside of the case the trackpad button stops clicking. They do NOT do it for over three years on multiple itterations of mac hardware. And when Apple acknowledge this self-same problem as covered by a recal for the 15" models but not the 17" something is rotten in the state of Denmark.

    Let me be clear, I NEVER complain about stuff like this, this is the first time in over a decade I've done so. But if you're seriously telling me that a MBP battery should last 18 months with light useage and then look like this:

    [​IMG] (note, not my battery and it's swollen on both sides)

    then my idea of acceptable differs from yours.
     
  4. edblor macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2008
    #4
    I agree that batteries will lose charge over time and expect to be replaced, but the swelling is not a result of usage, it is a result of poor design, or defect.

    Apple should do the right thing and replace your battery. Plain and simple.

    I'd call again and insist on replacement.
     
  5. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #5
    I'm a little surprised that they didn't offer you a replacement, even if the battery is out of warranty. Ever since the exploding battery episodes a couple of years ago, companies have been taking battery safety pretty seriously.
     
  6. MikeyTree macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2007
    #6
    Your computer is past its warranty, yet you expect Apple to replace a component for free? That's what warranties are for!

    Do you honestly think that a PC company would act any differently? The only difference is that the PC company probably wouldn't offer the discount on a new battery.
     
  7. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #7
    Actually.... no.

    http://www.dellbatteryprogram.com/

    Granted it's not quite the same situation, but it's pretty close.
     
  8. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #8
    Can you see that picture? That's not normal wear and tear in [hopefully] anyone's book. Especially as the problem looks to be similar to that which has caused mass recalls in recent history.
     
  9. Little HZ macrumors regular

    Little HZ

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2008
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    New Mexico
    #9
    I agree. Do you live near an Apple store? Maybe actually showing the damage to someone would prompt Apple to do the right thing ... :confused:
     
  10. wraithlabs macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2008
    #10
    This line is a nice way of saying that Dell was TOLD to do this...It is NOT an example of Dell being a responsible company.
     
  11. sammich macrumors 601

    sammich

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    #11
    What model of the 17" MBP do you have (Early 2006/Late 2006)? I had a bulging battery too, but I had warranty at the time, but I had no idea what if that particular battery was one of the ones with the problems.
     
  12. smiddlehurst thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #12
    It's the first of the HD screens so bought in June 2007 (ironically enough after taking back THREE 15 inch machines trying to find one with an LED backlight that worked properly).
     
  13. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #13
    The ends justify the means in this case. The bottom line is that customers got their faulty batteries replaced.
     
  14. smiddlehurst thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #14
    If it was a one-off no. Heck, even if it wasn't a one off, no. But when they've replaced batteries for both Powerbooks and 15" laptops that have done EXACTLY the same thing that are up to two years old regardless of warranty status? Yes, yes I do.

    Look, this is a problem with at LEAST three generations of Apple product. It's a problem that can be dangerous and lead to exploding batteries in very unfortunate cases. It's a problem that's been reported on the net for three years along with photographic proof. In that case I don't think it's unreasonable for Apple to do what Microsoft did with the 360, hold their hands up to a manufacturing defect and say 'if your battery swells up then we'll replace it'.
     
  15. sammich macrumors 601

    sammich

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    #15
    Check the serial number of your battery with the recall lists.

    Ah. Well, if the serial no. of the battery isn't on the recall/replacement list then you are out of luck. The fact of the matter is that Apple is under no obligation to give you a replacement of something that failed under normal use or (possibly in your case) the battery might just have been a single bad one to have been declared good for sale.

    These things happen, the only thing you can do is buy warranty.

    On the other hand. If you can get to an Apple Store, show them the battery, make some noise if they refuse (politely and with reasonable argument).
     
  16. barkmonster macrumors 68020

    barkmonster

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    Dec 3, 2001
    Location:
    Lancashire
    #16
    I've seriously misread your post, sorry about that :rolleyes: From the photo, I agree with you, Apple are at fault.
     
  17. smiddlehurst thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #17
    Again (and sorry, this isn't really aimed at you, just blowing off steam) I'm quite happy to accept the bad luck argument (and have done many times from all walks of life). But this isn't a new fault to Apple, it's been there for years, they KNOW it's an issue but it's only if they get a bad batch that they replace them. Surely that can't be right? Certainly isn't a great way to encourage repeat business from someone. I'm almost positive that others will be reporting this soon enough if they're not already but that Apple will just ignore the problem until it goes away.

    Coincidentaly, the tech support person told me if I couldn't get the battery out of the machine because of the swelling THEN it would have been covered under an exception for replacement. So basically because I've been a good little user and prevented a situation getting worse and costing them money I get screwed.
     
  18. iLog.Genius macrumors 601

    iLog.Genius

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    Feb 24, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #18
    If it's possible safety could be at risk, Apple usually will replace it even if you're not eligible for support. At the same time, the serial number was not in the database of faulty batteries at the time of production so this was an isolated problem and could happen and like a few already posted, Apple isn't obligated to replace anything. Like I said in another battery post, batteries are not given special treatment, you still treat it as a part. If the part fails it's on you to pay for the repair if you're out of warranty.

    You can't expect everything to come out 100% perfect that's why you have AppleCare. Like I said earlier, because your serial number is not listed, it's an isolated issue and you got bad luck. This happens with all companies.
     
  19. sammich macrumors 601

    sammich

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    #19
    My apologies. I guess sometimes I tend to take Apple's side by default.

    If you google 'apple battery recall macbook pro', there are a few links that might help your cause.

    Nothing like hassling a genius about your problems too. I think persistence isn't something they like in a busy shop.

     
  20. smiddlehurst thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #20
    It's okay, the amount of whining you get on here I don't blame ya :D But I'd just want to make this clear - I don't WANT to leave Apple. I think OS X is fantastic, the iPod range (especially the touch / iPhone) is wonderful, the design is like nothing else and they're wonderful to use day to day. BUT my fault list runs thus:

    13" MB - cracked wrist rest, taken into Apple store and get told it's a design fault where the latches meet the case and can't be fixed so it WILL go again, hope I've got an extended warranty.

    15" MBP - faulty LED backlight times three

    17" MBP - broken keyboard after 6 months. Battery that needs to go on a diet just to fit into the case. Slightly dodgy Airport.

    iPod Touch 1st gen - Faulty screen with inverted blacks, tried to pass it off as correct, checked three other units for the same problem. Waited two months, picked up a working unit from next batch.

    3rd Gen iPod Touch - Screen inserted off centre and tilted. Same problem on three replacement units. Waited a month, picked up working unit from next batch.

    That's ALL the hardware I've bought over the last three years which has had at least one serious hardware fault. No matter how good the software, no matter how enjoyable to use... it's not worth the pain of ownership anymore, especially at the prices they're currently charging in the UK.

    Odd that you should mention that, I asked if it wasn't a safety concern considering that at some point the cell is going to run out of room to swell and was told categorically that it wasn't a safety issue.

    Again, I know Apple's not obligated to replace it but considering they know it's a fault with batteries dating back so far (and it's not as if no 17" batteries have been failing) then I don't believe it's unreasonable to replace it as a show of good faith given that history.
     
  21. edblor macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2008
    #21
    Apple actually has a track-record of ignoring issues publicly until Class-Action is brought forth (iBook display cable, TiBook hinges...), or enough users create a fuss. I don't like it, and I can see why any manufacturer would be reluctant to pay out of pocket for repairs.

    However if there is a known issue, it goes a lot farther when a company fesses up to a defect.
     
  22. smiddlehurst thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #22
    Problem is that my nearest store is a good 45 minute drive away and horribly busy. May see if I can get an appointment for Wednesday when I finish early but I don't hold out much hope. Did get the address for putting a written complaint in to Apple however so that'll go off.

    I hit 'em with everything I could find about the recall(s) but they basically told me to sod off. If it's not a known faulty batch AND it's not stuck in the machine then you owe us £60 was the reply every time.
     
  23. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    #23
    Battery warranty is only 1 year.

    You DO know that most Macs have a built in camera / webcam? Use it to take a picture. Faster than finding some other photo from elsewhere.

    You should insist on speaking to a manager if at apple store, or have the call escalated.
     
  24. smiddlehurst thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jun 5, 2007
    #24
    Yes, but my Macbook is about two miles north of here as I'm in work and my arms ain't that long... As for the warranty I've answered that elsewhere in this thread - if it had just given up and died I wouldn't have a problem, as it was on about 89% health not two weeks ago and has stopped working owing to swelling up, a common complaint and one which Apple has already given a 12 month extension for certain batteries then I don't think it's unreasonable to want them to replace it.
     
  25. clyde2801 macrumors 601

    clyde2801

    Joined:
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    #25
    Yeah, I'd take a picture and send an email to customer support and steve jobs.
     

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