Apple Nixes AppleCare Sales in Italy

| News

AppleCare in ItalyApple has stopped selling AppleCare in its Apple Store locations in Italy, and will no longer distribute AppleCare to third party retailers. Reuters reported that Apple confirmed the decision, which comes in the wake of Italian regulators spending much of the year pointing out that AppleCare was providing a for-fee warranty that Italian law requires be included out of the box.

Apple includes a one year limited warranty with its products, and offers customers AppleCare that can extend that warranty by one or two years, depending on the product. In Italy, however, companies are required to warranty their products for two years, and regulators said that Apple selling AppleCare for that second year violates Italian law.

Apple was fined €900,000 (US$1,132,559 at the time) by Italy's Autoritá Garante della Concerrenza (AGDC) as part of this ongoing process in Italy. The company appealed that fine and lost, and stopped selling AppleCare in its brick and mortar stores on November 9th.

AppleCare remains available on Apple's online Apple Store, where Apple advertises that AppleCare, "[adds] to the two years of vendor warranty required by Italian law to protect consumers."

The AGDC told Reuters that talks with Apple are ongoing.


Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

iTalians, FTW!


Doesn’t AppleCare also provide “free” Phone Support after the initial 90 (or so) days ?


The article is wrong. In Italy, companies are not required to warranty their products for two years. It is the _seller_ of the product who is required to do that. So an Apple Store selling a product, whether made by Apple or made by someone else (like a Samsung printer, if an Apple Store sells them) would have to fix the product (made by Apple, or by Samsung, doesn’t matter) for two years. If PCWorld sells the same product, then PCWorld has to fix problems for two years, Apple doesn’t have to do anything.

If you look at the Italian Dell website and see that Dell doesn’t only charge for extended warranties, but doesn’t actually give _any_ hint that consumers might have more right, plus Dell is _always_ the seller, so the consumer _always_ has these rights towards Dell, and nobody in Italy seems to care, I can see why Apple stops offering Apple Care.

BTW. It looks like in the UK, a major chain (Comet) is just going bankrupt. When that happens, your statutory rights are worth nothing, but Apple’s warranty and Apple Care are still going to pay. And if you are an Italian moving to another country, your statutory rights are not worth much because the store is in a different country, but Apple warranty and Apple Care will still work.


Sounds like a basic actuarial problem.  Calculate the average cost of providing the second year of P&L on Apple products (ie: how many fail between years 1 and 2, and how much the repairs cost) and add that - plus a 20% markup for the paperwork headaches - to the cost of the product.  If the Italian consumers don’t like it, too bad. Why should Apple be the one to pay for the costs of their government regulations?

And people are correct that Apple Care provides more than just that second year P&L warranty.  Phone support for THREE years, P&L for THREE years (not two).  Guess if an Apple product fails between years 2 and 3, they are just SOL since, because of their government, they now have no choice to purchase that 3rd year coverage, not to mention 3 years phone support.  If they have a question after 90 days, they’ll just have to pay for it.

Way to protect the consumer at the cost of anti-business regulation, Italian Government.  No wonder your economy sucks.


Well, since I’m actually Italian I’ll try to explain.

Yes, the first year is covered by the producer (Apple in this scenario) and the second one by the seller. But since Apple Stores are property of Apple Inc. Apple has to cover the second year when someone buys a product from their retails or online store. And Apple was not recognizing that so authorities has corrected the problem.

Then we have the extended warranty. Here we have a lot of stores (chains like Comet, Mediaworld and so on) that have extended warranties on many products including Apple products. So i have just to buy thei extended warranties which are way cheaper than Apple’s.

An example. I bought my MacBook unibody in 2008 from a store (Mediaworld) and I got 2 years warranty (first year from Apple, second year from the store) and 3 more years of extended warranty for 20 euros. So for a total of 5 full years of warranty I pay only 20 bucks extra.

Apple removing Apple Care is just spite since they tried to impose their american model on a different country (actually the 2 years warranty is an European standard).

So still thinking customers got the short end of the stick here? wink


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