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Govt. Watchdog Group Finds Apple Misled Aussies On Consumer Rights 85

Posted by samzenpus
from the long-term-fixing dept.
beaverdownunder writes "Apple has agreed to an agreement to ensure staff inform customers of rights under Australian consumer law. Despite the 2011 law requiring retailers to provide a refund option for faulty goods, and free repairs to items reasonably expected to still function properly (this part of the law is intentionally ambiguous), Apple steadfastly stuck to its AppleCare program, denying warranty repairs to units more than one year old (without the purchase of an extension) and only offering replacement or credit for DOA items. Apple has promised to compensate all Australian customers who were charged for repairs during the last two years, and make the terms of the law clear on the Australian Apple website. How this will affect company warranty policy is unclear — under the law, consumers could be entitled to repairs for the life of the product (barring damage, of course)."
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Govt. Watchdog Group Finds Apple Misled Aussies On Consumer Rights

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  • by Thanshin (1188877) on Thursday December 19, 2013 @05:16AM (#45734197)

    It's cheaper for Apple to change that law than to provide repairs.
    It's more profitable for the lawmakers to change that law than to force Apple to provide repairs.

    Therefore, the law will be changed.

    Capitalist Oligarchy 101.

  • by gnoshi (314933) on Thursday December 19, 2013 @05:59AM (#45734367)

    Since this is just the latest in a sequence of run-ins for Apple with the Australian consumer watchdog, I doubt it.
    One of the things I like about living in Australia is the consumer protection law. Any phone you buy on a 2-year contract with a provider is required to have a 2 year warranty, thanks to the government consumer watchdog. Recently, another company was fined for lying to people about their rights. Displaying 'No exchanges or Refunds' sign is against the law, since you are legally obliged to provide exchanges or refunds if a product is defective, or does not do what it claims to do.

    The claim that 'the current law is, ironically, bad for consumers' is bullshit. It might be bad for the subset of consumers who buy products that work and who have no problems, if we assume that companies charge what they need to rather than the maximum the market will bear in the conditions. It is good for the subset of consumers who companies try to fuck when they sell unreliable crap.

    To quote the Consumer Affairs Victoria (Australia) site example:
    "Danny buys a plasma TV for $6000. It stops working after two years.
    The store says they will not provide a repair or replacement as the TV only had a 12-month manufacturer’s warranty. They tell Danny he should have bought an extended warranty, which would have given five years’ cover.
    However, it is reasonable for Danny to expect more than two years’ use from a $6000 TV. He is entitled to a repair, replacement or refund from the store."

    I agree with Consumer Affairs Victoria. A $6000 TV should work for more than two years.

  • by WillKemp (1338605) on Thursday December 19, 2013 @06:46AM (#45734521) Homepage

    The end effect I can see of countries forcing long warranties on products [......]

    They're not forcing long warranties on products. The law merely requires that a good should be of merchantable quality and fit for purpose - anything else is essentially fraud anyway.

    Another possibility is that Apple would become more stingy with repair/replacement, which would be a shame as it's really nice to go in and have them say "well, this just isn;t working, have a new one".

    They're not being generous, it's what Australian law requires them to do.

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