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How To Get the Most From Your iPhone’s Warranty

busted_iphone

CC-licensed photo by Jeff Turner

By Jonathan Zschau

Apple released the iPhone 3G on July 11th, 2008, which gives you early adopters just a few weeks before your one-year warranty runs out.

What does this mean? It means you should give your iPhone a good hard look to determine if it’s in your best interest to take your iPhone to your local Apple Store to try to obtain a replacement.

There are at least 18 well-known defects with the iPhone, all of which oblige Apple to replace the handset for free. All are detailed are over the next few pages, including ways to test your iPhone to make sure everything is functioning properly.

Issues that Apple considers grounds for replacement include hairline cracks, discolored screens, dead pixels, flakey WiFi, dodgy GPS and crackly speakers.

If your precious iPhone is suffering from any of these problems, read on to make sure you’re properly prepared before you head down to your local Apple store and get a replacement. Hurry, before it’s too late.

The purposes of this article are twofold: to help the average iPhone owner decide whether or not to seek a replacement iPhone pursuant to Apple’s 1-year warranty; and, to prepare the average iPhone user for the process of replacing his or her iPhone.

Should You Replace Your Old iPhone?

There are three main questions you should answer before bringing your iPhone to a Genius. First, does your iPhone have a problem caused by a legitimate defect? Second, is your iPhone still covered by its warranty? (July 10 is the last day if you purchased your iPhone on July 11th, 2008). Third, do you really want to replace your iPhone? Ultimately the decision is yours to make and should be made honestly — it is not in your best interest to try to obtain a new iPhone based on false pretenses.

The bottom line: if you genuinely believe your iPhone is defective, it is your right to demand that Apple repair or replace it pursuant to its 1-year warranty. Let’s discuss.

Turning your problem into a defect.

Take a close look at your iPhone. Get out a magnifying glass if necessary. It does not matter how insignificant the problem may seem. For this article, a “problem” refers to any imperfection in your iPhone.

If you want to exchange your iPhone, you will need to show that your problem is also a defect. A “defect” refers to any physical flaw that is not attributable to the iPhone owner’s fault or negligence. That is, a defect is a problem with the iPhone that is wholly attributable to either a flaw in the iPhone’s design or an imperfect manufacturing process.

Hardware problems are by far the easiest to claim to be a defect. This is the case because, absent blatant evidence of abuse like water damage or trauma, it is simply not feasible to open an iPhone up and diagnose each and every one of its many parts. That is, the Genius will usually just give you a new iPhone.

The next thing to do is to prepare to for a trip to your local Apple Store.

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  • Oliver Thornewill

    good article

  • a man on a mission

    so, itake it this means that i caan get by with water damage to the micro-processor?

About the author

Jonathan ZschauJonathan was introduced to Apple at the age of five when his family bought its first computer, an Apple IIGS, in 1986. He has owned and used Macs almost exclusively ever since. He is an attorney from Boston, Massachusetts where he focuses on litigation technology. As a contributor he writes about consumer protection issues related to Apple products. He is also the author of Buying and Owning a Mac: Secrets Apple Doesn't Want You to Know.

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