Apple Announces iMac G5 Repair Extension Program (UPDATE)

Apple Computer announced late Thursday a worldwide, first-generation iMac G5 extended warranty program that will fix video or power-related failures in the flat-panel desktop Mac free of charge.

The warranty applies only to first-generation models experiencing scrambled or distorted video, no video or no power.

"If Apple or an Apple Authorized Service Provider (AASP) determines that your iMac G5 computer is eligible as part of the program...and within its warranty period, you will have your system repaired at no cost to you," the companyis Web site stated.

In addition, Apple said, "If your iMac G5 experiences (these) symptoms...and is determined to be eligible under this program...after your Standard One Year Warranty expires, the program covers affected iMac G5 computers for up to two years from the original date of purchase."

The program affects certain 17- and 20-inch iMac G5 models sold between approximately September 2004 and June 2005 featuring 1.6GHz and 1.8GHz G5 processors.

The first five digits of the serial numbers of the Macs covered by program include W8435xxxxxx-W8522xxxxxx; QP435xxxxxx-QP522xxxxxx; CK435xxxxxx-CK522xxxxxx; YD435xxxxxx-YD522xxxxxx.

The announcement of the program is a public admission by Apple of what many first-generation iMac G5 users have been reporting for almost a year -- odd patterns of dots or white lines on their displays, odd video corruption, or iMac G5s that would require numerous restarts before video would come to life, to name just a few. Various online forums, including Apple?s discussion area, talk of bulging or even leaking capacitors on the motherboard or midplane.

Publicly for months, Apple denied the iMac G5 issues were on a large scale, saying the problems were not ?anything out of the ordinary.?

It is not known -- nor did Apple say -- how many units could be affected by the video/power problems.

Apple admitted that it is possible that some iMac G5 models may exhibit video or power issues that are unrelated to the component failure covered by the new extended warranty program. "If your iMac G5 is not covered under warranty or an extended service agreement, such as the AppleCare Protection Plan, repairs for other issues will be made at your expense if you request that they be made," the Web site said.

Further details can be found at Appleis iMac G5 Repair Extension Program for Video and Power Issues FAQ Web page.

The flat-panel iMac G5 was launched on August 31, 2004 at Apple Expo in Paris. A faster version of the model was announced this past May.