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  • AppleCare Leak: No Warranty Service, No Free Bumpers


    AppleCare reps are being given careful instructions about what to say and how to handle customer complaints about iPhone 4 reception, according to a purportedly leaked document being featured on Boy Genius Report. Among other things, the doc tells reps to "not perform warranty service" and "DON'T promise a free bumper to customers."

    Apple's official position since the issue was first reported has been, as Steve Jobs said: "There is no reception issue." The doc stresses that reps should "keep the positioning statements in the BN" (whatever that is) "handy:" these are talking points like "The iPhone 4’s wireless performance is the best we have ever shipped" and "Gripping almost any mobile phone in certain places will reduce its reception.... it is a fact of life in the wireless world." Reps are reminded that their "tone is important" while discussing this issue.

    What the document does not do is discuss any imminent firmware fixes -- or, for that matter, any fixes at all. They seem to be handling this as a customer communication issue only; only if your iPhone is having reception issues lying flat on its back without you touching it are you going to get any warranty service, unless you can somehow convince the AppleCare rep to go off script.

    The script, however, is pretty strict:

    1. Keep all of the positioning statements in the BN handy – your tone when delivering this information is important.
    a. The iPhone 4’s wireless performance is the best we have ever shipped. Our testing shows that iPhone 4’s overall antenna performance is better than iPhone 3GS.
    b. Gripping almost any mobile phone in certain places will reduce its reception. This is true of the iPhone 4, the iPhone 3GS, and many other phones we have tested. It is a fact of life in the wireless world.
    c. If you are experiencing this on your iPhone 3GS, avoid covering the bottom-right side with your hand.
    d. If you are experiencing this on your iPhone 4, avoid covering the black strip in the lower-left corner of the metal band.
    e. The use of a case or Bumper that is made out of rubber or plastic may improve wireless performance by keeping your hand from directly covering these areas.
    2. Do not perform warranty service. Use the positioning above for any customer questions or concerns.
    3. Don’t forget YOU STILL NEED to probe and troubleshoot. If a customer calls about their reception while the phone is sitting on a table (not being held) it is not the metal band.
    4. ONLY escalate if the issue exists when the phone is not held AND you cannot resolve it.
    5. We ARE NOT appeasing customers with free bumpers – DON’T promise a free bumper to customers
    It's got to be painful to be working the support lines at AppleCare these days: you're getting calls from (justifiably) angry customers and being told by your boss to watch your "tone."
    This article was originally published in forum thread: AppleCare Leak: No Warranty Service, No Free Bumpers started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 139 Comments
    1. MIKE DUB's Avatar
      MIKE DUB -
      Hmmm, i have no issues whatsoever, i hold my iphone 4 many ways and my bars dont change. I tried replicating what is done on the youtube video demostrating the fault, cant seem to replicate the issue. Guess i got one from the good batch. Hmmmm..
    1. nrfuller's Avatar
      nrfuller -
      Quote Originally Posted by barsoverbeats View Post
      People are selling 3m tape to correct the signal issue.... oh my...
      Man I think I'd be pissed if I had to apply tape to my very expensive new phone. Not that I have one, but still. Isn't tape what you generally use for old busted stuff? To keep it from falling apart?
    1. one1's Avatar
      one1 -
      8 hours before any complaints started flying around the net just as the 1st phones were making their way out I wrote this: The randomly off topic thread

      1pm the day before most people got their i4

      Foresight! It's a good thing.
    1. Vintage89's Avatar
      Vintage89 -
      I don't think those who are calling for a class action law suit simply want their phone to work properly. You were willing to pay at least $200 dollars for a new phone, but you aren't willing to buy either a $30 bumper that hardly covers any of the phone, or buy a case that completely protects the phone? If you aren't willing to protect something you put that much money into with a bumper or case, then you need to stop crying. Seriously. I'm getting sick of people whining about this, especially when there is at least one simple solution, along with a possible software fix on the way.
    1. xclusiveiphone's Avatar
      xclusiveiphone -
      Quote Originally Posted by DarkDragonAn View Post
      I got a free bumper with my iPhone 4. I just got my bumper today.
      Good for you, now the rest of us are F*****
    1. one1's Avatar
      one1 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Will_Meier View Post
      I don't think those who are calling for a class action law suit simply want their phone to work properly. You were willing to pay at least $200 dollars for a new phone, but you aren't willing to buy either a $30 bumper that hardly covers any of the phone, or buy a case that completely protects the phone? If you aren't willing to protect something you put that much money into with a bumper or case, then you need to stop crying. Seriously. I'm getting sick of people whining about this, especially when there is at least one simple solution, along with a possible software fix on the way.
      Sorry some people don't like duct tape and expect things to work properly *GASP*
    1. scottjl's Avatar
      scottjl -
      i have owned every model of the iphone and i can say the 4 has the absolute worst reception of any model. i am left handed and hold every model pretty much the same way, in my left hand, up at my left ear. i can make a call on my 2g and keep my connection and my call, i do the same thing on my 4g and within 30 seconds i will lose the signal and the call. sitting in the same position in the same room in my house. my 3g and my 3gs never had any issues either.

      yes jobs, any cell phone will have signal issues if you cover up the antenna with your hand, but the 4 has the worst reception issues i have experienced in the past 20 years.

      typical apple, all style, no substance. i love the screen. i love the size. the phone looks great. iOS is pretty good too (few complaints, but not many). but a phone's job, first and foremost, is to make voice calls, not play games, not surf the web, and the iphone 4 fails miserably in this regard. telling me to get a case, or put tape over the edges is a lame excuse to cover up bad engineering.

      personally i hope there is a grand lawsuit against apple on releasing this lemon. i wish i hadn't been so quick to sell my 3gs or this beautiful glass backed turkey would be going right back. hopefully i wouldn't have to wait in line as long to return it as i did to pick it up.
    1. Moosestache's Avatar
      Moosestache -
      Quote Originally Posted by Will_Meier View Post
      I don't think those who are calling for a class action law suit simply want their phone to work properly. You were willing to pay at least $200 dollars for a new phone, but you aren't willing to buy either a $30 bumper that hardly covers any of the phone, or buy a case that completely protects the phone? If you aren't willing to protect something you put that much money into with a bumper or case, then you need to stop crying. Seriously. I'm getting sick of people whining about this, especially when there is at least one simple solution, along with a possible software fix on the way.
      The question isn't whether we should have a case or not, the question is should we be forced to buy something to make a phone work as it was intended. Should apple have made it work correctly from the beginning.
    1. MikeHawk's Avatar
      MikeHawk -
      Quote Originally Posted by Will_Meier View Post
      I don't think those who are calling for a class action law suit simply want their phone to work properly. You were willing to pay at least $200 dollars for a new phone, but you aren't willing to buy either a $30 bumper that hardly covers any of the phone, or buy a case that completely protects the phone? If you aren't willing to protect something you put that much money into with a bumper or case, then you need to stop crying. Seriously. I'm getting sick of people whining about this, especially when there is at least one simple solution, along with a possible software fix on the way.


      WTH? Why should anyone have to pay an extra $30 bucks just to get a phone (that's already overpriced as it is) to work properly? This is a BIG mistake on apple's hand. The people who own the iPhone 4 and are having issues with reception have a right to whine about it. No phone (or electronic for that matter) should have THIS many issue's and complaints THE DAY BEFORE IT'S RELEASED. Freakin ridiculous!
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      Looks like they are palming the whole top of the phone on those HTC clips. I do not hold the phone all the way up top, most people do not hold the phone way up top and cover the whole thing with their palms.
      However many people like me who is afraid to drop their iPhone will hold the bottom of the damn phone which causes this reception issues. If Jobs want us to hold the phone up top to get reception, then he needs to warranty dropped phones.
    1. bobright's Avatar
      bobright -
      *sniff sniff*

      I'm afraid Will_Mier is an Apple employee
    1. zmanforever's Avatar
      zmanforever -
      I am waiting for a agent 18 case, but bumper until.

      Hope apple gives everyone some help at least.
    1. l0k0's Avatar
      l0k0 -
      They should give u a 200 refund plus give u a 3GS for trade in on the Iphone 4. But instead, they would rather try and sell u a bumper. When we all know that electrical tape works just as good, hehe

      Electrical tape on an expensive brick. Just imagine how cool that looks.
    1. Buffalano's Avatar
      Buffalano -
      @StealthBravo
      After you called Apple Care and they told you that you were going to receive a free bumper, how long did it take them to send it to you? I called on Friday, they sent me 3 e-mails stating that I am going to be receiving, here's your order number and everything else, if you have any problems contact me and blah blah blah

      It's now dawning upon Wednesday and I check my order status and it still says "NOT YET SHIPPED"
    1. Moosestache's Avatar
      Moosestache -
      Quote Originally Posted by Buffalano View Post
      @StealthBravo
      After you called Apple Care and they told you that you were going to receive a free bumper, how long did it take them to send it to you? I called on Friday, they sent me 3 e-mails stating that I am going to be receiving, here's your order number and everything else, if you have any problems contact me and blah blah blah

      It's now dawning upon Wednesday and I check my order status and it still says "NOT YET SHIPPED"
      Still waiting for my bumpers too.
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      I like this part "performance is better than the 3GS." I don't have this issue with my 3GS. When I had my friend cancel his iPhone4 order, the customer service person said she is not going to upgrade to iPhone 4 for the same reason. I am telling everyone not to buy the iPhone 4 now, I hope consumer watchdog do a special piece on this problem.

      Maybe this is Jobs farewell gift to AT&T. Blame bad reception to AT&T network and many followers will believe that, then go to Verizon with the spotless reception iPhone4. Make consumer buy same product TWICE! What an awesome way to make money.
    1. Buffalano's Avatar
      Buffalano -
      @Moosestache

      Did you get it free from Apple as well?

      When was the order placed?

      Did they give you an order number?

      From what I'm being told it takes an average of 5 business days for it to leave the facility.
    1. piston597's Avatar
      piston597 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Will_Meier View Post
      I don't think those who are calling for a class action law suit simply want their phone to work properly. You were willing to pay at least $200 dollars for a new phone, but you aren't willing to buy either a $30 bumper that hardly covers any of the phone, or buy a case that completely protects the phone? If you aren't willing to protect something you put that much money into with a bumper or case, then you need to stop crying. Seriously. I'm getting sick of people whining about this, especially when there is at least one simple solution, along with a possible software fix on the way.
      Lmfao, your really dumb you know that? When someone buys something, they expect it to work. You shouldn't have to buy an additional accessory to make the phone work, unless stated somewhere on the box or instruction manual. It's not that they can't spend an extra $30 (some truly can't), but why should we have to spend an extra $30 to make our phone work as a phone? And so what if some people don't want/need a case, who are you to decide if someone should protect what they buy? Honestly think before you post.
    1. Moosestache's Avatar
      Moosestache -
      Quote Originally Posted by Buffalano View Post
      @Moosestache

      Did you get it free from Apple as well?

      When was the order placed?

      Did they give you an order number?

      From what I'm being told it takes an average of 5 business days for it to leave the facility.
      Got 2 of them coming, have order number but they haven't shipped yet.
    1. sekazi's Avatar
      sekazi -
      The Bumper case or any other case will not solve the issue. It is a software issue not a hardware.