iphone 4 south korea
Bloomberg reports that Apple has revised its warranty replacement policy for iPhones in South Korea under pressure from regulators, now offering customers returning their defective phones within the first month of ownership the option of receiving brand-new replacement phones rather than refurbished units as has been standard policy.

Consumers who find defects in their iPhones within a month of purchase will receive new devices instead of refurbished ones, the Fair Trade Commission said in a statement today. South Korea became the first country to convince Apple to change its global customer policy, the commission said. Steve Park, a Seoul-based spokesman for Apple, declined to comment on the change.

Korean iPhone buyers have complained Apple only gives devices refurbished with used parts when there are problems with the product, even though its service warranty states customers can get refunds, new phones or free repairs, the commission said. Under the revision, consumers have the right to choose between the options, the regulator said.

The policy change comes after Korean lawmakers summoned Apple iPhone executive Farrel Farhoudi to the country's parliament last October to address concerns over Apple's policy of offering refurbished units as warranty replacements.

Questions over warranty replacements are not the only concerns facing Apple in South Korea, as a customer was recently awarded nearly $1000 in a lawsuit over the collection of iPhone location data. That decision has led to a $25 million class-action lawsuit covering about 27,000 iPhone users in the country.

Top Rated Comments

OriginalMacRat Avatar
131 months ago
I won't lie, but Apple refurbs are immaculate. I'm even considering buying a refurbished iPad because of how indistinguishable they are to a new device.

I agree.

I often buy Apple's refurbished products and never had issues with them.

But if I bought something new and it went south, I'd expect a new replacement.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
wordoflife Avatar
131 months ago
It would be nice if they brought that policy elsewhere. It would stink if you bought a brand new phone, two weeks later it breaks, and you have to get a refurbished phone after just buying a brand new phone.

I won't lie, but Apple refurbs are immaculate. I'm even considering buying a refurbished iPad because of how indistinguishable they are to a new device.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mytdave Avatar
131 months ago
To be honest, Apple has always had a ****** return policy. I hope this results in improvements in all countries.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
myrtlebee Avatar
131 months ago
I bought a refurbished iPod nano (5th gen) once from the online refurb store and it arrived with a faulty screen (slight, constant flickers) and a shifting click wheel. That put me off to refurbs until I realized that I've had quality control problems with nearly every Apple item I've bought new in the past 3 years. That said, it goes to show you, it doesn't matter if it's refurbished or not- the chances of receiving a defective product are the same (or possibly less) than if one purchased a new unit. Apple's quality control is not the best new or refurbished. This policy is merely for people who have a disillusioned belief that new = less likely to have issues. Not the case with Apple.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
charlituna Avatar
131 months ago
Its the same thing in the US we have 30 days to return/exchange the iPhone.
Anyone in the US who is getting a refurb within the 1st 30 days is being duped.
No one in the US is getting a refurb phone at any point.

Refurbs are post customer. In the US for sure, they can't use them as service parts because of privacy risks. Other countries may have different mileage on this due to their own laws. Maybe in South Korea, refurbs are fine. Thus they are used.

In the US at least what they do get are remanufactured phones. These are phones that have failed factory testing on one or two parts. The bad parts are replaced and the unit is retested. Then packaged as a service part. They have never been touched by a customer or 'used' beyond the testing process.

Despite the issue of laws, I'm betting all countries get the same 'remanufactured' units. Not actual refurbs and the issue is actually staff error in using the wrong terminology.

Also if we were to look at the South Korean policy text I'll put down odds that the phrase used is "replacement unit" not "new unit". Apple is very careful about that term because of the implications.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
iAmYou Avatar
131 months ago
Its the same thing in the US we have 30 days to return/exchange the iPhone.
Anyone in the US who is getting a refurb within the 1st 30 days is being duped.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

iphone 12 colors 2021

iPhone 12 Colors: Deciding on The Right Color

Thursday November 5, 2020 8:35 am PST by
The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro arrived last October in a range of color options, with entirely new hues available on both devices, as well as some popular classics. The 12 and 12 Pro have different color choices, so if you have your heart set on a particular shade, you might not be able to get your preferred model in that color. iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 The iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12...
iPhone 13 Dummy Thumbnail 2

Full iPhone 13 Feature Breakdown: Everything Rumors Say We Can Expect

Tuesday August 31, 2021 7:50 am PDT by
With the launch of Apple's iPhone 13 lineup believed to be just a few weeks away, we have compiled all of the coherent rumors from our coverage over the past year to build a full picture of the features and upgrades coming to the company's new smartphones. For clarity, only explicit improvements, upgrades, and new features compared to the iPhone 12 lineup are listed. It is worth noting that...
original iphone

Phil Schiller Says iPhone Was 'Earth-Shattering' Ten Years Ago and Remains 'Unmatched' Today

Monday January 9, 2017 7:15 am PST by
To commemorate the tenth anniversary of the iPhone, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller sat down with tech journalist Steven Levy for a wide-ranging interview about the smartphone's past, present, and future. The report first reflects upon the iPhone's lack of support for third-party apps in its first year. The argument inside Apple was split between whether the iPhone should be a closed...
macbook air deals

Deals: Amazon Drops Price of 256GB M1 MacBook Air to New Low of $849.99 ($149 Off)

Friday August 27, 2021 6:16 am PDT by
Amazon today introduced new low prices on the M1 MacBook Air for both 256GB and 512GB storage options. To start, you can get the 256GB model for $849.99, down from an original price of $999.00. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. Only Silver and Gold are...
iCloud General Feature

iCloud+'s New Custom Email Domain Feature Now Available in Beta

Wednesday August 25, 2021 7:48 am PDT by
Starting with iOS 15, iPadOS 15, and macOS Monterey, users with a paid iCloud+ storage plan can personalize their iCloud email address with a custom domain name, such as johnny@appleseed.com, and the feature is now available in beta. iCloud+ subscribers interested in setting up a custom email domain can visit the beta.icloud.com website, select "Account Settings" under their name, and select ...
iPhone 13 Dummy Thumbnail 2

Kuo: iPhone 13 to Feature LEO Satellite Communications to Make Calls and Texts Without Cellular Coverage

Sunday August 29, 2021 7:39 am PDT by
The iPhone 13 will feature low earth orbit (LEO) satellite communication connectivity to allow users to make calls and send messages in areas without 4G or 5G coverage, according to the reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In a note to investors, seen by MacRumors, Kuo explained that the iPhone 13 lineup will feature hardware that is able to connect to LEO satellites. If enabled with the relevant...
maxresdefault

New MacBook Pro Models Coming at WWDC, Suggests Leaker

Monday May 24, 2021 1:27 pm PDT by
New MacBook Pro models are coming at WWDC, according to leaker Jon Prosser who has a mixed track record when it comes to predicting Apple's plans. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Prosser provided no additional information, but there are new 14 and 16-inch MacBook Pro models in the works. The new MacBook Pros will feature the most radical redesign to the MacBook Pro ...
omg lightning cable comparison

Security Researcher Develops Lightning Cable With Hidden Chip to Steal Passwords

Thursday September 2, 2021 6:59 am PDT by
A normal-looking Lightning cable that can used to steal data like passwords and send it to a hacker has been developed, Vice reports. The "OMG Cable" compared to Apple's Lightning to USB cable. The "OMG Cable" works exactly like a normal Lightning to USB cable and can log keystrokes from connected Mac keyboards, iPads, and iPhones, and then send this data to a bad actor who could be over a...
ted lasso notchless phone

No, That Notchless iPhone Spotted in 'Ted Lasso' Isn't the iPhone 13

Tuesday August 31, 2021 2:15 am PDT by
Recent sightings of a notchless iPhone in highly popular Apple TV+ comedy "Ted Lasso" have led to sensational headlines suggesting this is a canny bit of product placement on Apple's part and that the iPhone 13 will be notchless. In actuality – and this could go without saying – the phone in question is very likely just showing a poorly superimposed display added in post-production. Notchless ...
calculatorapp

iOS 11 Bug: Typing 1+2+3 Quickly in the Calculator App Won't Get You 6

Tuesday October 24, 2017 2:03 pm PDT by
A bug in the built-in Calculator app in iOS 11 is getting some major attention this week, despite the fact that it's been around since iOS 11 was in beta testing. At issue is a calculator animation that causes some symbols to be ignored when calculations are entered in rapid succession. You can try it for yourself: Type 1+2+3 and then the equals sign into the Calculator app quickly. Due to...