Apple Forced to Change Warranty Policies for New Laws

Apple often stamps a "one year limited warranty" label on its products. As a significant number of people have some sort of dent, scratch, or malfunction, phone manufactures usually lose great amounts of money in replacing products with a two year warranty. However, Apple lost €900,000 at once last year after a non-compliance complaint was filed by the Italians, stating that Apple did not adhere to the European Union's mandated two year warranty term. Drawn in by financially wounded multinationals, other EU countries are now plotting their attacks.

Apple is currently in the process of revising its policies in France, Germany, and Belgium, stating that customers are entitled to replacements and manufacturing repairs for the entire two years instead of one. While the biggest economies in Europe are forcing Apple into compliance with their consumer protection laws, we have yet to hear Spain, the United Kingdom, or the Netherlands push for change, as Apple products are still labelled in those regions as having only one year warranties. Do you think these changes will chain react to the United States and pressure Apple to forget about one year warranties, or will the government be hesitant to force such a change on one of the biggest electronics companies in the country?

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  • vmem
    wow, where's that policy in the US? I wouldn't mind a slightly higher price premium if there is such a mandate.
  • spectrewind
    The U.S. NEEDS something like this. I see a lot of new electronics warrantied for 90-days, making 1-yr seem great by comparison. 2-yrs would be greatly welcome, especially with all the lead-free BGA soldering jobs that like to break in consumer electronics when you add head/cooling.
  • RealityClash
    Here in New Zealand, warranties don't mean jack if you know your basic consumer rights.
    Even if a product is out of warranty it's still required to last what the consumer would expect to be a "reasonable amount of time". If you bring this up with retailers when a product is out of warranty they will in most cases repair/ replace it as if eventually the customer takes them to the disputes tribunal, they know that in most cases they will lose.

    Not as simple as just having a longer warranty, sure, but I've had out of warranty products replaced on the spot when I've brought this up before so it does work.
  • nevilence
    I love reading about large companies being sued, makes my pennyless existance much more bearable =P
  • mrmez
    I thought Apple got in trouble for not clearly advertising the 2 year warranty. Not because they denied claims. Big difference.

    As in Aus there is always the "fit for purpose" warranty you can argue, but you do have to fight for it. Even if your phone has a 1 year warranty, and it dies after 2 years of normal use, you can argue it should be expected to last longer.
  • CaedenV
    Dents and scratches!?!? when has a warranty ever covered wear and tear on a device?

    For that matter, I cannot remember the last expensive piece of hardware that I have purchased that did not come with a 2 year (or longer) warranty. Seriously, I even waited to upgrade my HDDs until drives had a 2 year warranty again, and was annoyed that they did not have the 5 year warranty that my old ones had. All of the rest of my parts (except the case) all have 3-5 year warranties on them. I suppose I did purchase an extended warranty on my cell phone to cover the 2 years, but that only covers normal breakage, not user wear and tear.

    Shame on Apple for not providing at least a stock 2 year warranty, and shame on the EU for providing the worst consumer protection even seen in the history of mankind. Surely the two were made for eachother.-
  • m32
    Apple pays the U.S. too much money for change. So no change here for awhile. The government has more pressing matters, like piracy, to combat instead of this. ;)
  • Mats Svensson
    I think its 3 years now, in EU.
    For manufacturing faults, but definitely not for bumps & scratches.

    At least it is here in Sweden.
    It used to be just 2, until a couple of years ago.
    I have never experienced a time whee it was less that one year here.

    But in my experience you have to argue a bit in some stores if its after one year.
    I have never met the store-droid that didn't back down, when it became obvious Ii knew my rights =)

    And respectable sellers, that values their reputation, usually never give you any problem here.
  • kensingtron
    Every cellphone manufacturer in Australia has a 2 year warranty other than Apple who blatantly flaunts the law. Yet we have some of the highest prices in the world. Grow up Apple.
  • williamf3000
    Government should only intervene when the free market is operating inefficiently. This question is all about whether or not you want or need Big Brother in yet another seemingly innocent part of your life.

    I will take a big slice of no thanks. The technology market is about the most competitive market on earth. There are so many products that do the same thing and there is so much good information out there about these products, that it is ridiculous to think this market needs help. Crappy products get weeded our and so do crappy companies. At least for the most part. Yes sometime we buy crap because we were mislead or we did not do our homework. This is called LIFE! Get over it!

    All a two year warranty is going to do is increase the cost of ALL products. It is not going to magically make a crappy company make a good product. The best warranty is the one you never have to use.