Dear Apple – How many iPhone 5’s does it take to get a ‘new’ one?


applestoreip5Well there we go. Number six. What am I talking about? Let me set the scene.

Back in February of 2012 I Pre ordered the iPhone 5, ecstatic that I would be one of the first to receive this beautiful piece of technological wizardry.

Once it appeared on my doorstep delivered by a generic UPS delivery man, I immediately ran upstairs to delicately open the small black box which contained my latest of gadgets.


New? Nearly New?

After surgically cutting the cellophane, I held the top half of the box aloft, letting gravity pull the bottom half gently towards my desk. The iPhone appeared, reminding me of the monolith from 2001: a space odyssey. I already knew I’d be sold on the design and I wasn’t disappointed.

Pealing the plastic protection from its body revealed the beautiful device in all of its glory; but wait, there was a problem. My heart sank as I notice a mark by the dock connector bezel; this cant be right I ask myself. I wipe the disfigurement with a cloth. It remains – What the hell?

My first iPhone 5 is damaged, second-hand and so therefore totally spoiled. I call Apple care in an instant to rectify my issue. They are happy to send another unit out to me – fair enough.

P1010703Once the second handset arrives by hand of a second UPS delivery driver, I’m apprehensive to open the box. With bated breath, I peel back the plastic once more and break the hermetic seal unveiling yet another aesthetically damaged unit. My anguish has now reached new heights. So once again I have to contact support, berate them until they state that they are happy to send out yet another unit to satisfy me. This will not do at all, how can I trust them this time? Not happy to wait one more minute, I head to the Apple store in Bristol.

Upon my arrival, I’m unreservedly apologised to and offered another unit whilst the assistant is assuring me that this is an exception, as apparently ‘my warrantee does not cover such an issue’. So apparently the Sales of Goods Act doesn’t apply all of a sudden? Do Apple not need to provide me with the new product they promise?  I digress, a new unit is offered to me but oh look, there is yet more damage – the anodising is scratched.

Next please! This new unit has a lump on its back. It resembles a techno Quasimodo. The final unit revealed to me is once again blemished, but not as bad as the others. Fed up and running low on time and energy, I accept the unit. As I was about to sign for the new phone, I’m interrupted. “Sorry sir, this is only a sixteen gigabyte model”. I walk out with number two still in my hands.  I email yet another complaint and move on.

P1010704       P1010705


It’s not just the blemishes

February rolls around, and I’m content with my blemished unit – until the camera breaks. Once again I head to the shop, explain the various situations I’ve been put through and I’m offered a refund or a new unit. Wait, a refund five months on?! Even the manager doesn’t know how to process this one.  At this point surely I should just take the money and run. A fifteen minute coffee break is needed to consider this offer. I could either get a brand new handset, a Windows phone or Android phone but would it truly satisfy me?

In the previous year I have owned both of these options, but always went back to the iPhone. For my needs it just seems to be the pick of the bunch. I love the screen, the regular app updates and knowing that I will rarely see any signs of a crashes or instability. Not to mention the design, stability, speed and ease of use which have always brought me back.

So here I am after all of this hassle and a few seventy mile round trips to the store with handset number six. I’ve even written this article on it. It is not just a communication device for me, it’s also an extension of me. It opens up knowledge, entertainment and opportunities; used at home, work and on the road. In fact, a status that I posted on it lead to my latest job.   It’s these qualities that lets me overlook the problems I’ve had, but to say I’ve been happy with the quality control on Apple’s most recent product would be wrong.  There has obviously been serious lackings somewhere along the production line and it’s more than a shame for a user to have to go through all this.

This escapade has been a chore, but the iPhone 5 is still worth every penny – and this one at least isn’t scratched.





Thanks to Keiron for this article on his iPhone experiences – You’ll be seeing more from Kieron over the coming weeks / months as a new contributor for TechNow – For now though any questions or thoughts you may have for him, leave a comment below!



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