Very much regret buying my iPhone 4S from the Apple Online Store

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by tricouleur, Nov 5, 2011.

  1. tricouleur macrumors newbie

    tricouleur

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2005
    #1
    I pre-ordered a 16GB white iPhone 4S from the apple online store. No issues except that I realized a 32GB would suit my needs better. And I was naive enough to think that it would be an easy process. I thought I just have to reserve a new phone and show up at the retail store to exchange the old one for the new one.... Turns out, after much time wasted getting the wrong information from both the local Apple retail store and AT&T, that you can't exchange an iPhone if bought from the online store. Apple online and retail stores don't share the same system; orders can only be cancelled and a new order placed which of course would set one back 1 to 2 weeks without a phone if ordered online or be lucky to get an iPhone 4S reserved at a retail store, or try to get one at the AT&T store. Added to that, if you have the grandfathered AT&T unlimited plan, you would lose that too (there is a chance that wouldn't happen according to one AT&T rep but not another).

    Of course, all this could have been avoided if I had just bought the phone from AT&T instead or even waited to get one from the Apple retail store. I mentioned to the Apple online rep that one is basically punished by buying from the Apple online store. And grudgingly, he agreed.
     
  2. Jordan921 macrumors 68040

    Jordan921

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    #2
    Well now you have learned your lesson. I had a 16GB iPhone 4 and this time around ordered a 32GB 4S and love it.
     
  3. AndrewR23, Nov 5, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2011

    AndrewR23 macrumors 68040

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    #3
    Exactly my situation. I posted a thread about Apples return system when ordering online is a joke.
     
  4. brand macrumors 601

    brand

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    #4
    This is nothing new and is a very common business practice.
     
  5. Ole'schooliBook macrumors member

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    Jan 25, 2011
    #5
    That "fact" doesn't make it any more acceptable. Just because HP/Dell/whatever does it...

    OP: I can see the frustration for sure. Just be assertive and insistent that you 1)Get the phone you really want, 2)Get it within a reasonable amount of time (If you talk to the right person, they should expedite it for you-just don't settle until you talk to that right person), and 3)Don't lose your unlimited data plan. If the whole issue is about there being multiple "systems" for returning an item, that's not your problem and thus you shouldn't suffer or be subject to any penalties in service or product.

    Stay positive and assertive and it'll all get sorted out.
     
  6. Obscurelight macrumors 6502

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    NYC
    #6
    This will be fixed soon thanks to Tim Cook. With the new retail system being put in placed you can pickup and return online orders to retail stores now.
     
  7. brand macrumors 601

    brand

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    #7
    Apple has never advertised or publicized that their online stores and brick-n-morter stores are treated as a single entity so why is it unacceptable for them to use them as they do, separately? Is it ideal for consumers, no, but it is how it is and still completely acceptable. We as consumers shouldn't just assume things and then hold others at fault.


    I hope so, that would be much more convenient for its users.
     
  8. vistadude macrumors 65816

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    Jan 3, 2010
    #8
    Cause almost all other retailers like best buy, target, etc do treat online and b&m buys and returns as the same, yet they don't advertise it. People come to expect that if online orders are getting messed up, you could go into the store and talk to a real person or so called "genius" to get better service.


     
  9. brand macrumors 601

    brand

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    #9
    Actually Best Buy only started treating their online and brick-n-morter business as the same within the past year. I work there part time for a little while for their discount.
     
  10. vistadude macrumors 65816

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    #10
    Hmm okay, I guess the sales associates went out of there way to be nice to me. I bought a product about 3 christmas's ago online, and went to return it to the physical store. It went fine, they had no problem doing an exchange or returning the full payment.

     
  11. asleep macrumors 68040

    asleep

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  12. danny_w macrumors 601

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    Austin, TX
    #12
    I've done the same with Best Buy, Sears, Target, and Apple and never had a problem. I never realized that you couldn't return online stuff to the Apple retail store, since I have done it before, and since it seems to be common practice elsewhere. Now custom orders (engraved, BTO) are different, but that should be obvious I would think.
     
  13. Tom G. macrumors 68000

    Tom G.

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    #13
    Stay Positive, Assertive, AND POLITE.

    Polite goes a long way toward getting what you want. Ranting gets nothing but turn downs.

    Persistence pays off too. If you don't get what you want today try again tomorrow. Time is on your side.
     
  14. Pipper99 macrumors 68000

    Pipper99

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    Fort Worth, TX
    #14
    I'm returning my black 4s for a white model to apple.com. I got different answers from the apple store reps today, but the final consensus is that i have to return it to the online store The only thing that makes me nervous is somehow losing my unlimited data plan.
     
  15. VeNoMiZeD macrumors 6502

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    San Francisco
    #15
    Well, let's see what the Apple store says tomorrow when I bring in my White Iphone for an exchange. If they say no, I will just add a line, purchase a 16gb model (that hopefully I reserve tonight) as a temporary. Slap it on my credit card. Start the process of my first Iphone for the online return and return the second (new line) when the first exchange completes. Which will all be under 30 days, so no ETF, no cash out of pockets because it's on credit card and another used Iphone that will return to APPLE because they couldn't simply exchange it from the get go :p Wouldn't that work? I would rather not do that way, but I can't have any down time without a phone, especially my Iphone.
     
  16. PhoenixMac macrumors 65816

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    Mar 7, 2010
    #16
    Weird I bought a refurbished 09 Mac pro online and went to the store and exchanged it for a new '10 Mac pro in and out of the store in 5mins this was when the '10s first was released
     
  17. takeshi74, Nov 5, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2011

    takeshi74 macrumors 601

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    Feb 9, 2011
    #17
    Or read the terms on the online store.

    You can return Apple online items but not the iPhone. Again, read the terms and conditions before placing your order. Not after.

    It is the buyer's problem. The policies are clearly spelled out on the web site. If you have a problem with an online retailer's policy (Apple or anyone else) then you shouldn't order from them in the first place.

    Never assume.
     
  18. vitzr macrumors 68030

    vitzr

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    Jul 28, 2011
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    California
    #18
    Apples online store is the finest of it's type, as long as you avoid buying your iPhone from them. AND it's not their fault. NOR am I an Apple apologist.

    I will explain.

    One must remember it's the only product that involves two separate companies. Apple & your choice of carrier. That's problem number one.

    Problem number two, people often believe buying from Apple will bring them more joy or other myth.

    Problem 3, caused by #2, plus massive demand, and you have a real mess on your hands. It's unfair to expect a smooth timely experience when hoardes of people are ordering each minute.

    I learned the hard way, then decided to order from AT&T each of the last three years. Because my account is in good standing, my credit is excellent, and I always order the very moment the site is open for orders. I enjoy an excellent experience, receiving my phone within just a few days while having confirmation emails & tracking numbers at hand. FedEx delivers it before 10 am, so I don't have to spend an entire day waiting. That's what works for me.
     
  19. jekyoo macrumors 6502

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    Chicago
    #19
    I had to return my 4S that I bought online and it wasn't bad at all. The whole process took 5 business days. I sent it out on Monday, Apple received it on Wednesday and during that same day, they reset my upgrade. 2 days later, my CC was refunded. They quoted 1-2 weeks for the whole process to finish but they're just overestimating it so they don't get in trouble if it takes longer than 5 business days.

    My unlimited data plan was not effect by this process. My unlimited data plan is still there.
     
  20. blackr macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2011
    #20
    Thanks for your info. Do we need to call Apple to get the return label? When I click "return item" online under my 4S order page, it says ineligible to return but we are still 30 days window??

    In the process of returning the iphone 4S, do you know if we could take out the SIM card and plug it to my old iphone, or we could just go to att store and activate another SIM in the meantime.

    If anyone has any answers, I really appreciate it. Thank you.
     
  21. pourme macrumors regular

    pourme

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    Aug 19, 2009
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #21
    I would have bought all three of my iphones from AT&T instead of Apple online if AT&T would "open " their store earlier. Apple accepts orders earlier than AT&T on launch day.....I didn't realized it made that much difference!....:apple:
     
  22. jekyoo macrumors 6502

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    Sep 11, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    #22
    Yes, you need to call Apple to process your return. They'll send you an email with a FedEx shipping label shortly after your call. You can also access the FedEx shipping label from your apple order page.

    Yes you can take the sim card out and put it into your old iPhone, that's exactly what I did. I just shipped back everything besides the sim and the return process had no hiccups.

    ----------

    It isn't a easy and quick return since it involves resetting contracts. Only the iPhone has certain restrictions if you want to return it. For all other Apple products, you can easily return it at the store if you bought it online.
     
  23. pourme macrumors regular

    pourme

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    Aug 19, 2009
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    North Carolina
    #23
    At the risk of going off thread....But still on the most recent subject....I'm considering purchacing my 1st ipad, online Apple store, referb....Is this a bad decision? "don't return it to the local Apple store"

    Thanks...
     
  24. brand macrumors 601

    brand

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    #24
    It's a refurb, you can't return it to an Apple store AFAIK.
     
  25. tricouleur thread starter macrumors newbie

    tricouleur

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2005
    #25
    Thanks jekyoo, glad to know your unlimited plan wasn't effected.
    And takeshi74, I am curious if you have read the Apple Online Store Sales Policy because if you had, it makes no mention of exchange policies. According the Apple Store employees that I spoke to, anything but the iPhone indeed can be exchanged at the store. I doubt that I am the only one in this boat as just reading this comment thread proves. Apple would be wise to insert a line in Online Agreement explicitly stating that iPhone 4S exchanges are not allowed.
     

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