AppleCare Protection Plan Under Fire in Europe Once Again
Apple’s infamous AppleCase Protection Plan seems to be in the spotlight once again in Europe after Test-Aankoop/Test-Achats, a Belgian consumer watchdog, filed a complaint against the way Apple markets the product in Europe. Customers within the European Union are entitled to a free two-year warranty with any consumer electronic purchase but Test-Aankoop/Test-Achats is claiming that Apple’s warranty marketing doesn’t properly explain these rights to Belgian shoppers. According to TechCrunch
, the Belgian consumer watchdog has teamed up with ten other entities in Europe to file complaints about the way in which Apple operates its AppleCare warranty plan. After receiving little cooperation from the Cupertino California company, the group has decided that it’s time to take the complaint to the courts.
The group cites a similar lawsuit in Italy, regarding the same exact issue, as a precedent. In the Italian case, Apple was forced to pay a total of €900,000 (approx. $1.2 million) as a penalty and modify its practices for the Italian market. The reason AppleCare plans are such a problem in Europe is because of the rules that are applied in the European Union. Typically, extended warranties are a great way for companies to earn some quick money. While the plans give customers peace of mind and ensure that their gadgets are repaired or replaced for free outside of their standard one-year warranty, many customers tend to not take advantage of them, so they lose out on the money they paid in the first place. In the European Union however, customers get a free two-year warranty for every consumer electronics device they purchase, but not everyone is aware of this and they purchase extended warranties under the assumption they have just one year otherwise.
Test-Aankoop/Test-Achats is the second European watchdog that claims Apple is continually keeping quiet about the two-year warranty in an effort to sell AppleCare protection plans under false pretense. The group feels that customers should be made aware that the AppleCare protection plan only offers an additional 12 months of cover for customers in the EU because they have the first two years as standard as opposed to one. We’ll have to see what the court decides in this case but as of right now, it doesn’t seem like the battle will be in favor of Apple.
via Cult of Mac