Used Parts In iPhone 3GS? YES!!

dnitram

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 7, 2009
10
0
Atlanta
I've had a problem with my 32GB 3GS for a little over a week. When plugged into a car or home charger, if a call comes in, all you hear are rapid beeps/chirps (the noise you hear when you plug your iPhone into its charger). You are unable to answer the phone or see who was calling you. No record will be on the phone, such as "missed call."

Upon calling AppleCare (the phone is about 3 months old and I have the extended warranty through AppleCare), the support agent (and later the agent's supervisor) told me my replacement phone would have a new screen, a new battery and a new case, but the insides (guts) will have been previously used, though checked out. Further conversation from the supervisor revealed that Apple routinely disassembled returned iPhones and incorporates the previously used parts to assemble the "new" iPhones. I was shocked and a bit amazed. My background is automotive manufacturing and I know for a fact that is illegal... Illegal to sell something advertised as new that is in fact NOT new.

Has anyone else heard of this? How does it make you feel that the new iPhone you bought wasn't really "new?"

I received a customer satisfaction survey a few minutes ago and gladly shared my feelings with Apple. :mad:
 

xmnj

macrumors member
Jul 5, 2007
79
4
Pretty much every other company out there does the same thing, replacement products are refurbished.
 

ntrigue

macrumors 68040
Jul 30, 2007
3,804
1
My best iPhones have been brown-boxed. Anyway, you have Applecare, so if these used portions fail they just give you another. What are you worried about?
 

aristobrat

macrumors G5
Oct 14, 2005
12,247
1,315
Further conversation from the supervisor revealed that Apple routinely disassembled returned iPhones and incorporates the previously used parts to assemble the "new" iPhones. I was shocked and a bit amazed. My background is automotive manufacturing and I know for a fact that is illegal... Illegal to sell something advertised as new that is in fact NOT new.
The only time Apple uses refurbished iPhones is for warranty replacements.

iPhones sold as new contain all new parts.
 

bstpierre

macrumors 6502a
Mar 28, 2008
534
153
I work for the auto industry too. When they replaced my transmission under warranty (under 10,000 miles actually) I received a rebuilt one. I continued to pay the lease for the SUV as if it was new.
 

dnitram

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 7, 2009
10
0
Atlanta
I've had a problem with my 32GB 3GS for a little over a week. When plugged into a car or home charger, if a call comes in, all you hear are rapid beeps/chirps (the noise you hear when you plug your iPhone into its charger). You are unable to answer the phone or see who was calling you. No record will be on the phone, such as "missed call."

Upon calling AppleCare (the phone is about 3 months old and I have the extended warranty through AppleCare), the support agent (and later the agent's supervisor) told me my replacement phone would have a new screen, a new battery and a new case, but the insides (guts) will have been previously used, though checked out. Further conversation from the supervisor revealed that Apple routinely disassembled returned iPhones and incorporates the previously used parts to assemble the "new" iPhones. I was shocked and a bit amazed. My background is automotive manufacturing and I know for a fact that is illegal... Illegal to sell something advertised as new that is in fact NOT new.

Has anyone else heard of this? How does it make you feel that the new iPhone you bought wasn't really "new?"

I received a customer satisfaction survey a few minutes ago and gladly shared my feelings with Apple. :mad:
I well understand the difference between a refurb/replacement phone and no, I'm not hung up on "new." I questioned to supervisor throughly. On the other hand, I just spoke with AppleCare a few minutes ago and was told that only used parts were used in the replacement phones... Not new. Kind of conflicts with what I was told yesterday. He went on to say that if I would scroll to the General tab in settings where the Serial Number is listed, any iPhone 3GS with the serial number begining with "8" would be an absolutely NEW phone for certain. That's the information I needed to avoid getting someone else's problems in a new wrapper. It was worth my call anyway. ;)
 

vivithemage

macrumors 6502a
Jul 12, 2008
682
0
I had something wrong with my 5 day old 3GS and they replaced it with a phone that was in a white box. I made it very clear that I didn't want a refurbished phone. He said they give the apple store phones in those boxes, because there is no point in using the retail boxes, as they have the extras I don't need when replacing just the phone.

He better not have been lying to me. It looked brand spanking new.
 

ouimetnick

macrumors 68020
Aug 28, 2008
2,497
567
Beverly, Massachusetts
I had something wrong with my 5 day old 3GS and they replaced it with a phone that was in a white box. I made it very clear that I didn't want a refurbished phone. He said they give the apple store phones in those boxes, because there is no point in using the retail boxes, as they have the extras I don't need when replacing just the phone.

He better not have been lying to me. It looked brand spanking new.
When you bought the iPhoe, and agreed to the agreements, It did state, that Apple will replace the phone with a new or refurbished. Refurbished iPhones are great. They have a new outer shell, battery and screen. They go under more testing that the new ones go, and they are most likely free of defects.
 

vivithemage

macrumors 6502a
Jul 12, 2008
682
0
Shrug, I prefer brand new, non-refurbs. Either way, this one works better then the original :).
 

aristobrat

macrumors G5
Oct 14, 2005
12,247
1,315
I had something wrong with my 5 day old 3GS and they replaced it with a phone that was in a white box. I made it very clear that I didn't want a refurbished phone. He said they give the apple store phones in those boxes, because there is no point in using the retail boxes, as they have the extras I don't need when replacing just the phone.

He better not have been lying to me. It looked brand spanking new.
It could have been.

The white boxes used for replacements at the Genius bar are the same, regardless of if the contents inside are brand new or refurbed.

If you got your replacement right after the iPhone 3GS launch, it was probably brand new. The further away from launch, the less likely you are to get a brand new replacement.
 

ZipZap

macrumors 603
Dec 14, 2007
5,431
858
When you bought the iPhoe, and agreed to the agreements, It did state, that Apple will replace the phone with a new or refurbished. Refurbished iPhones are great. They have a new outer shell, battery and screen. They go under more testing that the new ones go, and they are most likely free of defects.
Who says they do more testing....

I'll bet they simply replace the parts and power-on test.
 

pvmacguy

macrumors 65816
Sep 2, 2009
1,112
28
Jax
I currently have a refurb replacement it has a 5k serial, and it build quality and the way it functions if far superior to any of the new 3GS' I received. Trust me you won't even know the difference between the new and the refurb you get. :)
 

qawsed

macrumors regular
Jul 9, 2009
117
16
I had something wrong with my 5 day old 3GS and they replaced it with a phone that was in a white box. I made it very clear that I didn't want a refurbished phone. He said they give the apple store phones in those boxes, because there is no point in using the retail boxes, as they have the extras I don't need when replacing just the phone.

He better not have been lying to me. It looked brand spanking new.
:rolleyes: what difference does it make?
 

ZipZap

macrumors 603
Dec 14, 2007
5,431
858
I currently have a refurb replacement it has a 5k serial, and it build quality and the way it functions if far superior to any of the new 3GS' I received. Trust me you won't even know the difference between the new and the refurb you get. :)
Be more specific...what you do base that assessment on?
 

TB07-NJ

macrumors 68020
Jul 7, 2008
2,306
130
FORMERLY NJ now FL
Where did they advertise a replacement phone as new? Why should a REPLACEMENT phone be new? You've used yours for 3 months and you expect a brand new one as a replacement?

In the auto industry it is standard practice to replace new parts under warranty with refurbished parts including engines and transmisisons. It even states that on the forms you sign when you bring a vehicle in for warranty repair.


I've had a problem with my 32GB 3GS for a little over a week. When plugged into a car or home charger, if a call comes in, all you hear are rapid beeps/chirps (the noise you hear when you plug your iPhone into its charger). You are unable to answer the phone or see who was calling you. No record will be on the phone, such as "missed call."

Upon calling AppleCare (the phone is about 3 months old and I have the extended warranty through AppleCare), the support agent (and later the agent's supervisor) told me my replacement phone would have a new screen, a new battery and a new case, but the insides (guts) will have been previously used, though checked out. Further conversation from the supervisor revealed that Apple routinely disassembled returned iPhones and incorporates the previously used parts to assemble the "new" iPhones. I was shocked and a bit amazed. My background is automotive manufacturing and I know for a fact that is illegal... Illegal to sell something advertised as new that is in fact NOT new.

Has anyone else heard of this? How does it make you feel that the new iPhone you bought wasn't really "new?"

I received a customer satisfaction survey a few minutes ago and gladly shared my feelings with Apple. :mad:
 

dnitram

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 7, 2009
10
0
Atlanta
Where did they advertise a replacement phone as new? Why should a REPLACEMENT phone be new? You've used yours for 3 months and you expect a brand new one as a replacement?

In the auto industry it is standard practice to replace new parts under warranty with refurbished parts including engines and transmisisons. It even states that on the forms you sign when you bring a vehicle in for warranty repair.
That may be Chrysler's or GM's practice, but not Ford. I should know, I work for them. An engine or transmission, yes, but the rest, NO.

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=751675
 

Night Spring

macrumors G5
Jul 17, 2008
13,064
5,084
Why are we discussing whether or not replacement iPhones are refurbs or new? Since Apple clearly states that a replacement phone can be a refurb, this isn't an issue -- what's standard in other industries or companies isn't relevant. As I understand it, the claim made in the OP was that Apple was selling refurb phones as brand new. Now, if that were true, it would be fraud, but so far I haven't seen anything in this thread to convince me of its veracity.
 

rgetter

macrumors newbie
Sep 20, 2008
24
2
Portland, Oregon
"Rebuilt" not "refurbished"

Replacement phones are refurbished.
For what it's worth, I had my 3 month old 3GS replaced at the local Genius Bar yesterday. It came out of non-retail box in a drawer. I asked the Genius if this was a refurbished phone and he said, quite pointedly, "It is not refurbished, it is rebuilt." Being a bit wary, I used the term "refurbished" again in our conversation and he corrected me.

Being not completely convinced that the phone had a hardware rather than a software problem (it was one of the many that would loose all phone services after the 3.1 update), I'm still not totally happy about the replacement. Its battery was almost totally flat (not the ideal way to store a Li-ion battery). However, it did only have 3.0.1 installed, so I was able to set it up as a new phone and not restore the dreaded 3.1 update. Even though this was a long and tedious process (done once before the previous evening while on the phone to AppleCare), I do feel a bit safer with the pre-3.1 OS.

I know it's just semantics, but I would be interested in hearing if anybody else had a conversation like this with an Apple employee.

-Ric
 

jaikob

macrumors 6502
Jul 1, 2008
429
0
Freeland, MI
When I contacted apple about my unresponsive screen on my old iphone 3gs, I told them I "wanted" a refurbished. The build qualities on the refurbs are FAR superior to those of new phones. I've had my refurb for 2 months, and am very happy with it. I even get better battery life!