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Apple CEO Tim Cook Posts Apology Letter to China Over Warranties

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Last week Apple faced accusations from state-controlled media in China over its warranty policies, as the latter stated it received different treatment compared to other countries, such as the company repairing iPhones instead of replacing them, which is common at the retail level overseas. Apple responded at the time their “warranty is more or less the same as in the US and all over the world,” but clearly that did not satisfy Chinese consumers.

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Now, CEO Tim Cook has take to Apple China’s website (via Business Insider) to publicly apologize and detail its new warranty policies. Below are excerpts of what was announced (Google Translation):

In order to further improve the level of service, we are implementing the following four major adjustment:

  • Improved iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S repair policy
  • Provide a concise and clear on the website of the official Apple repair and warranty policy statement
  • Increase the intensity of the supervision and training of Apple Authorized Service Provider
  • Related issues to ensure that consumers can easily contact Apple Feedback Service

Cook reiterated Apple provides two year warranties on MacBook Air and Mac computer motherboards and other major components, a policy that also includes the iPad. Essentially, Cook has outlined what Chinese consumers can expect from these warranty policies and reassured them of similar service compared to Apple stores around the world. He also reiterated at the end Apple’s immense respect for the Chinese market (loose Google Translation, but you get the picture):

Heartfelt thank you to give us valuable feedback, we always harbor immense respect to China, the Chinese consumer is always the top priority of our hearts.

Apple has long said China is one of their fastest growing markets, so an apology letter directly from the CEO can be seen as ‘kowtowing’ to their biggest customer so they can ‘save face’. Cook visited China for the second time in January to cozy up to high level Chinese officials and other executives of mobile operators. He has publicly stated his love for China and its culture (his sister in law is Chinese), a country he has visited at least 20 times since 1996.

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