It's really unfortunate that everyone is getting such different levels of support from Apple. I'm frustrated as well (still searching for my final acceptable phone), but I have to give credit (at least in the experience I've received), that Apple is doing a stellar job to make me happy. I've only been working with the phone support, but they have provided personal contact and followups every step of they way. I do not have any experience in the store with exchanges, though I'm doing that today and will report back how that goes.
So if you're not getting professional and satisfactory from Apple, I'd suggest asking for another contact and politely escalating as needed.
I was told by my service rep that they are changing policies now, the latest being earlier this week.
So those of you loyal to the iPhone, do your best to stick it out. Understand it's frustrating. And if you just can't bear it any longer, you taking your business elsewhere is a constructive sign to Apple as well which hopefully they will learn from.
Continued good luck to all of you.
I've just received my iPhone 5 white 32GB. I got it shipped from the German carrier T-Mobile. I took it out of the box and it showed two noticable scuffs.
I am not happy with that. The bottom scuff is very visible and noticable when you run your finger around the edge. I will visit the Apple Store on Monday.
That's horrible! RETURN THAT iCRAP!
Send that photo to the blogs.... let's make some noise!
As for accepting a device with dust? You are crazy! Apple said that this device was perfect! Best iPhone yet ever! With the best fit and finish! Don't accept the dust as okay and acceptable! YOU PAID MONEY FOR IT!
Bought a white 16GB on launch day at an Apple Store in Paris, France, which had no defects. After playtesting it for a few weeks (I love it...) I decided to buy one for my wife as well, to upgrade her from the iPhone 4. Tried Apple's online reservation form every day last week (for in-store pickup) and finally yesteday I was allocated a phone.
Went to pick it up today and opened the box in-store (again, Apple Store Paris, again, a white 16 GB). It had a very light scratch on the back -- very superficial but about about 3/4 inch long, and one of the white antenna joints was not completely white -- looked like it had glue smudged across it or something like that. I hesitated for a moment but when I pointed out the defects to the salesperson he agreed it was not normal and agreed to see if there was another one he could give me (stocks being limited and the store having guaranteed a certain number of each model to the people who reserved online). He said if not of course I could return it for an instant refund to my credit card.
After about 5-10 minutes waiting, he came back with another new phone. He was very friendly about it -- he said their goal is to make me happy. He processed a return on the spot and we opened the other brand-new box. This one did not have any obvious defects and I am glad I made the switch (if you examine it VERY, VERY closely there are two really minuscule nicks in the silver chamfered edge at different spots, but really the size of tiny dust particles -- which I am willing to accept -- I know that with normal use it will get a lot more of those).
While I was waiting for the replacement phone, I saw another person buy and reject a phone because of physical defects -- also a white model. Didn't see that phone up close though.
Clearly, Apple have gone with an inherently more fragile design this time around. Whether at the factory (which I agree is unacceptable) or in normal use (which is practically inevitable unless you totally baby your phone and cover up its beauty in a case), clearly this phone's design makes it more fragile to nicks, scuffs and scratches. But I still far prefer it overall to the 4/4S design. It truly is the best user experience yet in an iPhone.
Yes, the shiny chamfered edge is beautiful -- but it is also fragile! I always resell my previous phones on eBay and get pretty good money for them because they are in excellent condition. It will be harder to keep the iPhone 5 pristine, so yes, I will probably lose a bit of money in 2 years when I upgrade to the iPhone 6 or whatever.
If you are a potential buyer worried about out-of-the-box defects, Foxconn's tightening of QC will probably mean virtually no more defective phones will be getting to consumers within another couple of weeks. So if you cannot inspect where you buy knowing you can swap immediately, then I'd say wait a bit. If you are really worried about overall fragility, then I'd stay go with/stick with a 4S and wait to see what the 5S/6 are made of. They might engineer the aluminum differently, or maybe the coloring/polishing processes, or maybe even go back to a stainless steel antenna. But then again, maybe they won't! So if you want one of these more fragile beauties, go for it! You just might have to be cool about potential wear & tear.
Very good summary! Thank you for that!
I totally agree to your logic and to your suggestions.
For me it is good to hear that the Paris Apple Store Employees seemed willing to help with the issue. I am trying my luck tomorrow with the Frankfurt Apple Store. Hopefully the staff there will be helpful and hopefully they have unaffected new units in stock.
Just got off the phone with Apple and they booked me an appointment at the genius bar for tomorrow. I originally bought my phone 2 days after launch and noticed a large dried water like stain on the back of the aluminum, I took it back to the store and they replaced it. However the Apple Store employee was quite condesending, basically saying that I was over reacting and something like this will not be replaced in the future.
I took the replacment home and took a look, the aluminum stain was gone but now I noticed that there were 2 smaller stains above and below the apple logo. I decided to live with it since it wasnt huge. A few hours later I noticed that on the top left corner there was also a dent in the edge and there were black lines marking the antenna break.
I called the store today and was told that they are not sure if they can replace it and they would have to check the phone. From my experince last time, I guessed that I would probably have a hard time getting the phone exchanged so instead I called Apple support. They were much more understanding, I told them the issue and specifically said it was cosmetic but still frustrating, the representative booked me an appointment and gave me a service number so that when I go to the store, they know what I need. Hopefully this means that I will be getting my phone replaced tomorrow without too much hassle. I will be careful to examine the phone thoroughly tomorrow in store to make sure there are no further defects.
I'm determined to get a new phone that isn't marked up, $700 for a phone and I expect it to look like the product that is advertised as being "made with a level of precision you'd expect from a finely crafted watch."
I'll post an update tomorrow for people who are interested, hopefully by now, more properly manufatctured phones have been shipped and are in stores.
Please make sure you update us.
I have have had a torrid time in the apple store in Liverpool UK.
I am on my fourth iPhone 5! Each time I have been there have been defects. The second time I was told to pick the best of a bad bunch. The last time I was told by the genius that he loathed top open another phone as the damaged ones would have to go back to the factory! Then proceeded to put them back in the draw!
The service through the store has been nothing short of shambolic. I too am waiting on AppleCare as I will not accept a service part as a replacement as I paid for a new phone and expect nothing but that.
Please do not lay down over this because it really is not on. People are getting tired of the situation and are accepting sub standard goods and I think they are praying on people doing this. This is probably why no official statement has been released. Not even an apology!
The phone is bound by a two year contract for most people and as such should be accompanied by a product with a life for at least that period.
I have been asked to wait for three to four weeks for my replacement which I don't mind to be honest if I am going to receive a new unaffected handset. I urge you to do much the same.
The Apple Store here in Paris gave me a new phone for visual defects that were WAY less noticeable than the obvious ones on your phone from T-Mobile. If they give you any hassles I think you should just be polite and firm and throw their own advertising line back at them ("iPhone 5 is made with a level of precision that you'd expect from a finely crafted watch - you can't help but notice the exquisite chamfer surrounding the display. A crystalline diamond cuts this beveled edge. it's what gives iPhone 5 its distinctive lines." -- see German equivalent here: http://www.apple.com/de/iphone/design/).
I hope they don't tell you to send it back to T-Mobile Germany; I know in France even if you get your iPhone from an operator, Apple handles all warranty/replacement issues directly -- it has been their policy since the iPhone 4 came out.
Let us know what happens!
Yes, Apple/Foxconn should have done better on quality control. No, Apple probably will never admit it publicly. But at least the vast majority of people are able to get a replacement or refund.
Apple knows very well how many phones are being returned for cosmetic defects. It is surely a lot -- enough that I bet the company is internally (and with their manufacturers) treating it as a major issue -- but overall it is still a small minority of bad units given the millions of units sold.
For those who have been unlucky: just be persistent, hang in there, and at worst your new iPhone is probably only a few weeks away.
I decided to take the plunge on the black and went to the Apple store yesterday. I got the LAST 64GB Black Verizon model they had in stock. After opening the box during the purchase, I noticed a small nick on the bottom corner of the phone, but, knowing that everyone else has been seeing them as well, I decided to live with it. I left the store and a couple of minutes later removed the plastic screen protector. After removing the screen protector, I was greeted with an inch-long vertical scratch in the center of the phone! I returned it to Apple and was not given any problems during the return, but since it was the last one they had in stock, I left empty-handed.
After seeing all of the complaints about the black model, I think I'll try my luck on the white model now. I've been torn trying to decide between the colors anyway!
If you're here to check out people's concerns about the scuffability, you should probably go for white. I was torn too -- the Stealth fighter-ish all-black is cool, professional-looking and a refreshing update on the stainless steel band on the 4/4S. But for the 5, I went with my first white iPhone, and I don't regret it at all. If you are torn, I'd say go with the white: the inevitable scuffs/scratches will be less visible and so the phone's esthetic quality will last longer (and help you resell if you want to one day). Also, I do a lot of text-intensive stuff (rather than video) on the iPhone, and I find the white border complements a white/light-colored background magnificently.
And has anyone had problems connecting to wifi!! I think it's the software update. Connects but disconnects now and again quite often and when try going on a game or safari it takes ages to load even with it on!! Pain in arse!!
I'm on 3rd iPhone. Got with O2 . Have emailed the boss of O2 and will wait for there reply til decide what to do. As this handset also has a minut scuff at bottom! Best of the 3!!