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February 21st, 2000

[7:30 AM] Buy A PowerMac Right Before MACWORLD? Apple Offers 7 Day Price Protection
by John F. Braun

Imagine the situation that every computer owner dreads. As soon as you get your machine, something faster and/or less expensive comes out. With many Observers writing us complaining about their timing, we headed over to the Apple page to check out their Sales and Return Policies. Sure enough, they state that you can receive a refund between the current and former selling prices. According to one Observer:

After calling and being on hold for a while, I was able to speak to a representative.

After taking my order number, he stated that I was entitled to some sort of refund, but would have to do some calculations and call me back. He did, and the final amount was the exact difference between the current and former price for the same configuration. The other option offered was to ship the machine back and get the 500 MHz, but after spending all the time getting the 450 up and running, it wasn't worth it for me.

Bonus points for his calling me back and leaving a message a few minutes later stating the total refund amount plus sales tax, which I had to (unfortunately) pay for the order.

Both this and my last purchase from the Apple Store (for Mac OS 9) were handled professionally. I knew exactly where my order was, everything was delivered as promised, and it worked. In this case, I was further pleased to know that, although I didn't have the fastest machine, I would pay the new, lower price via a refund.

This is the relevant information from Apple's SALES AND RETURN POLICIES:

The Apple Store endeavors to offer you competitive prices on current Apple products and selected refurbished and clearance products. Your total order price will include the price of the product (on the day of shipping) plus any applicable sales tax and shipping charges. Apple reserves the right to change prices for products displayed at the Apple Store at any time.

Should Apple reduce its price on any shipped product within 7 days of shipment, you may contact Apple Sales Support at 1-800-676-2775 to request a refund or credit of the difference between the price you were charged and the current selling price. To receive the refund or credit you must contact Apple within 14 business days of shipment.

We recommend that you contact Apple ASAP if you think you may be eligible.

The Mac Observer Spin: Our own Kudos to Apple as well. Many retail outlets offer as much as 30 day price protection, but you will have to check with your retailer to find out for sure. It's great to see Apple stick by its customers in this fashion. A note to those who become angry when prices change: This is the way life and this industry works.

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