South Korea Replacement iPhones No Longer Refurbished

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Apple has changed its police regarding iPhone swap outs inSouth Korea, Instead of giving customers refurbished iPhones as replacements, as it does throughout the rest of the world, Apple will exchange defective units for brand new handsets, according to Bloomberg.

Apple’s new exchange policy in South Korea gives customers the option of getting a new iPhone instead of a refurbished unit for defects found within the first month after purchase. Customers can also choose to have their iPhone repaired for free, or receive a full refund.

Replacement iPhones in South Korea: New, not RefurbishedReplacement iPhones in South Korea: New, not Refurbished

The new policy came in response to a South Korean investigation into complaints that defective iPhones were being replaced with refurbished units when Apple’s own terms listed new iPhones as a replacement option. South Korean officials summoned Apple’s senior director of iPhone and iPod service operations, Farrel Farhoudi, to answer questions regarding the policy last October.

At the time, speculation suggested Apple was merely humoring South Korean officials by testifying and that the company had no intention of changing its local policies.

Now, however, it’s clear Apple had a change of heart, or at least went into last year’s question session knowing there was a possibility a policy change could happen.

With Apple’s revised iPhone exchange policy in place in South Korea, there’s a chance other countries could start pressuring the company to do the same for their customers.

Apple hasn’t commented on the new South Korean iPhone exchange policy.

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5 Comments Leave Your Own

dstrickler

Typo: “Apple has changed its police regarding…”

mhikl

Damn good idea. My first 60G Colour iPod went kaputt on me in its sixth month and each of the 3 replacements where terrible. A great graduation gift became a disappointing nightmare of bad memories. I lived in an area that had no transport other than fly-in and Apple refused to use postal services. Regardless, (wiping away tears of bad memories) defects should be caught before entering the system so a new replacement is the only option if it is to be an equal replacement. 70b and replacements not of the consumers making, tacky.

beverson

a new replacement is the only option if it is to be an equal replacement

From Apple’s perspective, the reason they sometimes provide refurbs is that, if there’s a defect in your device that’s covered by the warranty, they are obligated to repair the defect. But it’s usually faster and more cost effective to just swap it out than to train in-store staff to do really intricate repairs on tiny devices (an exception would be an iPhone screen swap, which they can do in-store). If they repaired your device, it wouldn’t be new, so you’re not exactly entitled to a new device just because it’s defective.

Now, I realize in practice this sometimes doesn’t work out. It sounds like you had a really bad experience, and maybe at the time they had some quality control problems with the “service part” inventory for that iPod. And if you don’t have an Apple Store nearby, this also makes the experience a lot worse. But for most customers, this isn’t an issue. Apple has a really great track record in the industry with refurbs. And any refurbed iPod/iPhone/iPad is going to have a factory-new battery, which you wouldn’t get if they just repaired your device. And you typically get to walk out with a “repaired” product rather than wait for a repair turnaround. So, again, for MOST customers, this should be a non-issue.

Surely reasonable people could disagree on whether this is the best approach for the customer. But I think it’s overall a decent policy.

mhikl

Surely reasonable people could disagree on whether this is the best approach for the customer. But I think it?s overall a decent policy.

I hate to agree with you but I do, beverson. I suspect quality control is better today. But the first replacement I got, the battery hardly held up, and it kept going off on me even when charged or plugged in and there were other issues that I can’t recall. The second replacement the screen would show really weird disjoined stuff and that’s the best I can remember. The wheel was misaligned and when I told that to the supervisor that was enough to send it back. The third one didn’t even work when I came. So, I complained and gave up. Six hundred and counting lost.

I should be an Apple flamer after that but anytime I had to use a PC, I would bless Apple and say, I forgive thee, three times. Still irritating, though. I treated that thing like the family jewels. It was a special present. I still have it and charge it up occasionally and try to get it to work. Now I must go and beat the dog.

tellis301

If only Jack Webb were still alive

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