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Apple drops iPhone 4 return fee amid reception complaints

updated 05:50 pm EDT, Fri July 2, 2010

Antenna issue already targeted in several lawsuits

Apple has decided to drop its 10 percent restocking fee for customers dissatisfied with the new iPhone 4. The device has achieved extremely brisk sales in the first few weeks of availability, however many customers have complained of poor reception, dropped calls, or a complete loss of signal when the phone is held in a certain way.

The issue has prompted at least three separate law firms to pursue class-action lawsuits against the company. Many of the attorneys are focusing on the return fees as potential misconduct, arguing that the antenna issue is a known defect that has yet to be addressed by a recall or other resolution.

Apple has promised a software fix for the issue, claiming that the problem is exaggerated by a software issue involving the signal bars. In the meantime, the company recommends using a case or gripping the phone without placing the hand directly on the black bands at the bottom of the stainless steel frame. [via ComputerWorld]

by MacNN Staff



  1. legacyb4

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Maybe we can get these at "refurb" prices?

  1. c4rlob

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Many customers have complained?

    A little better reporting please...
    When you start a sentence by saying the phone had "extremely brisk sales", sales that were on a magnitude never seen before (1.7 MILLION), you probably shouldn't throw around the words "many customers have complained" if those customers aren't on an equally significant magnitude. Are these complaining customers 10%, 5%, or even 1% of total sales?

  1. notagain

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Doin the right thing?

    How could Apple charge a restocking fee if the product is defective? If the customer is dissatisfied with a working product then u charge a restocking fee.

  1. Fast iBook

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Many customers have complained

    My sentiments exactly, i wanna know the exact percentage affected by this issue, i'm guessing like 3%. I was told under 10,000, but it may have been under 10,000 per 100,000 shipped, so i dunno. I trust my source, they have been right on 100% of the time for 12 years. I'm not concerned about our 2 units, but if there is an issue, i will get them swapped out at the apple store at 14th st in nyc.

    - A

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I'm certainly glad that Apple is allowing

    iPhone 4 returns free of charge. Then all those gripers and complainers can return their iPhone 4s, shut up with their whining and let someone else who's waiting for an iPhone get one. If the class action suit's over this restocking fee then there's no point in those disgruntled consumers going on. They return their iPhones and get whatever make phone they want, some HTC, Motorola, RIM or Nokia. We'll see how happy they are with those other vendors smartphones. These people are so damn impatient that they can't even give Apple time to try to fix the problem. Too bad for them.

    I'd also like to get an idea of how many consumers (what percentage out of the 2 million iPhones sold) are dissatisfied.

  1. charlituna

    Joined: Dec 1969


    wow this article is full of BS

    someone needs to check their sources.

    There has been no restocking fee on the iphone since the original 3g was released. They cut the fee because you were not allowed to walk out with an unopened box. They insisted on opening it and connecting it to itunes before you left. Since you had no choice on the whole open/close issue, no fee.

    Also, the article implies that the iphone has been in active sales for a lengthy period. Which is hyperbole much, it was announced June 7, not even 30 days ago. And preorders started Jun 15. Basically two weeks

    As for the complaints, with 1.7 million phones sold in the first two days, the number (even if you double the blog counts) is only like 2% of all units. For this kind of item that's actually well below the standard. Particularly since a number of folks have admitted to having c*** reception in their area before getting the iphone 4. So perhaps their issues have nothing to do with the phone at all. And simply ATT sucks in that spot.

  1. Donevan

    Joined: Dec 1969



    "extremely brisk sales"

    Wild understatement, if not misleading.

    "many customers have complained"

    Gross overstatement, if not deliberate exaggeration.

    This kind of unprofessional anecdotal reporting does AI and your readers a disservice.

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