Shanghai Activist Accuses Apple of Selling Used iPhones

October 26, 2011 -

A Shanghai activist is accusing Apple's Beijing store of passing old iPhones as brand new. According to a story in the Shanghai Daily, activist Wang Hai - who is representing two citizens - filed a lawsuit against Apple in a Chinese court accusing the firm of selling refurbished iPhones. Both purchases were made at the company's store in Beijing, China.

Hai claims that two consumers each bought what they thought was a brand new iPhone in July of this year with one year warranties. When they used the serial numbers on their phone to check the warranty they found that there was only six months left on it instead of one year.

This fact, says Hai, is proof that Apple knowingly sold used phones to customers as new.

"It is a very serious discrimination to Chinese consumers, because refurbished phones are being sold at cheaper prices abroad, but the same as new ones in China," Hai told the paper.

We'll let you know how this all plays out.

Source: MCV


Comments

Re: Shanghai Activist Accuses Apple of Selling Used iPhones

Doesn't really surprise me. This isn't on Apple, but the store. A certain large electronics retailer here in the US will do the same thing, at least at locations where the store manager is willing to break a few rules and strategically neglect paperwork.

Basic process: Broken out-of-warranty items come in, owners are offered to buy a replacement because repairs will take time or be almost as much as a new item (which, between sending them back to the manufacturer or immensely inflated repair charges, is true). Anyone who accepts the new replacement offer, their item is then disassembled for parts. Two broken iPhones can easily make one working one, plus plenty of leftover parts to fix items for customers that didn't accept the replacement offer, rather than buying replacement parts.

Working items from this process like game systems, TVs, or computers are generally sold as used, but phones are special. Most buyers aren't just taking the phone in the box, they're actually having us activate it on their number and they're walking out with a functioning phone in their pocket. So a rebuilt phone can be passed off as new as long as there's no scuffs on the case. Plus, new buyers regularly leave the box behind, meaning rebuilt phones can be put in the box and then shelved as "New/Returned - Opened Package," which is a mark down, but not nearly as much as a used phone... and the parts used to fix the phones were free from broken phones.

It's basically what electronics recyclers like Gazelle.com do, but on a smaller scale.

Re: Shanghai Activist Accuses Apple of Selling Used iPhones

Ok, I almost asked what the problem with used phones is, however, it's not right to sell used as new.

Re: Shanghai Activist Accuses Apple of Selling Used iPhones

i had a similar issue with my original xbox a few years back when the DVD drive died.

they claimed my 1 year (not even counting the multiple extensions they had at the time) warranty had expired despite i'd only had the thing for about 6 months.

in the end i was about to pay up to get the bloody thing fixed, and magically they found there was an "error" and replaced the fubar drive for free.

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