Had a Denied Warranty Claim at the Apple Store for iPhone or iPod With “Water Damage”?

This past April, Apple agreed to the terms of a US$53 million class-action settlement stemming from Apple’s warranty practices regarding water damage on older-generation iPhones and iPod touches.

Both the iPhone and iPod touch contain Liquid Contact Indicators which change color when they come into contact with water. The crux of the issue, however, is that these Liquid Contact Indicators were also prone to change color in humid environments.

To qualify for a cash refund, you must: (a) be a United States resident; (b) Apple denied warranty coverage for your iPhone on or before December 31, 2009, OR for your iPod touch on or before June 30, 2010; (c) when it was submitted to Apple for warranty coverage, your iPhone or iPod touch was covered either by its original one-year limited warranty or by an AppleCare Protection Plan; and (d) Apple denied warranty coverage because Apple stated that your iPhone or iPod touch had been damaged by liquid.

The chart below is instructive, but note that the amounts are subject to change depending on how many folks actually file claims.

Apple’s Identity Crisis – As Earnings Decline, Investors Pay Attention to a Lack of New Products

Image representing Apple as depicted in CrunchBase
Jessica E. Lessin, jessica.lessin@wsj.com

It’s all about how Apple is positioned by investors and the marketplace.

If it continues to be seen as a hardware business, Apple’s streak—driven by products like the iPhone and iPad—could run out quickly as smartphones and tablets get commoditized and consumer tastes change. It is a lesson learned by companies like BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion Ltd., whose tech hardware was quickly eclipsed by products from Apple itself.

If Apple is classified as a software-hardware hybrid, the company could be valued more like Internet and software makers that have recurring revenue streams and that often trade at higher price-to-earnings ratios than hardware firms.

“The market views Apple as a consumer hardware company tied to product cycles that drive volatile revenue and earnings streams,” says Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty. But that view isn’t complete, she says, since “Apple customers buy into a brand that offers ease of use similar to companies like Amazon.com or enterprise companies like NetApp.”

Apple has characteristics that differ from many other hardware businesses. Its customers often upgrade their Apple products annually, far more frequently than the four-year PC upgrade cycles typically found at tech hardware businesses including Hewlett-Packard or Dell.

The history of hardware companies that stayed on top through software is short. Sony Corp., 6758.TO +2.14% for instance, lost its supremacy to Apple when the Walkman couldn’t compete with iTunes and the iPod. RIM enjoyed huge sales spurred by its email service, only to have that eclipsed by Apple and its App Store.

Now, some say there are signs Google Inc. GOOG +1.91% may do the same to Apple with online services. Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster says Apple builds great software, but gets a “C” on software services like data syncing service iCloud.

Must Read Internet Report from Mary Meeker

English: Mary Meeker portrait

If you only read two things a year, they need to be Mary Meeker‘s analysis of the state of the Internet and technology in general.  She just released new new presentation (copied below), and in it outlines:

  • Internet growth remains robust
  • Internet penetration in the U.S. leads all other countries.
  • iPods Changed Media Industry… iPhones Ramped EvenFaster… iPad Growth (3x iPhone) Leaves “Siblings” in Dust
  • Android ‘Phone’ Adoption Has Ramped Even Faster –Nearly 6x iPhone
  • Global Smartphone + Tablet Shipments Exceeded PCs in Q4
  • Global Smartphone + Tablet Installed Base Should Exceed PC Installed Base in Q2, 2013
  • 169 Years In, Standalone Compact Camera Shipments Were Surpassed By Smartphone (with Camera) Shipments
  • 20+ Years In, Portable Navigation Device Unit Shipments Were Surpassed by Waze

Looking for Guests for show on Mobile Device Evolution

A stack of the iPods I now own... included are...

We’re looking for guests to interview via telephone Wednesday, September 26th, afternoon to fill ten slots on our technology-related radio show. We’ll be talking about:

Modern Mobile Device Evolution

We’re thinking about things like:

iPods changed the music industry. iPhones changed the phone industry even faster.

  • What has the growth of Smart handheld devices been?
  • How does it compare with past evolutions/revolutions?
  • Where is it going?
  • Android adoption has advanced at 4x rate of iPhone – where is it going?
  • How much room for growth is left?

Contact us via producer+smartdevices at CraigPeterson.com

Get a Second Phone Number for Your Cell Phone AND Save on Calling Costs

Image representing Vumber as depicted in Crunc...

Image via CrunchBase

Craig Peterson:  Welcome back to Tech Talk with Craig Peterson. Today we’re talking about back to college, all of the different types of technologies that can help make it cheaper and easier to go to college, to be able to communicate with family and friends back home. And right now, that’s specifically what we’re going to be talking about. A company called Vumber.com online, at least that’s where you’ll find them, V-U-M-B-E-R. We’re going to be talking about what they’re doing that allows you to turn your iPod or iPad into a phone. And also, from an IOS device, which can include your iPhone as well, have unlimited calling and texting worldwide. How they pull all of this together.Continue reading