For many years, warranty issues were at the top of the charts of complaints deals about Apple. The Fruit Company received a lot of complaints regarding its personal warranty policies in various regions and countries.
Now, Apple updates its warranty policy in France, Belgium and Germany regarding the AppleCare service, and it offers two-year protection for all Apple devices. Now, Apple and its authorized distributors extended the warranty policy thought the AppleCare Protection Plan from one-year warranty up to 2 or 3 years.
Following the Italy’s move, Belgian consumers groups have tried to push Apple for changes to its warranty programs in order to clarify the rules regarding the statutory warranty enforced by the EU laws. According to the European Union law, companies need to provide protection for customers for at least two years for each product.
However, Belgium is not the only country pushing for changes regarding Apple’s warranty policies. Consumers from Germany, Luxembourg and Portugal have also filed lawsuits against Apple concerning its AppleCare support and warranty practices.
At this point, the change in the online warranty suggests the fact that Apple changed the one-year warranty plan through its AppleCare Protection Plan for all its devices to a two or three-year statutory warranty, just as it happened with Italy a year ago.
More than a year ago, Apple was sued by Italian regulators with the claim that the Cupertino-based company is using a different warranty plan in Italy, compared to other countries. Here, customers received only one-year warranty plan instead of the two-year plan as it happens in other locations. At that time, the company was fined with $1.2 million and an additional $264,000 for misleading consumers regarding two-year warranties mandatory by European Union law.
After Italy, in March 2012, consumer groups from 10 other countries requested Apple to make changes to its warranty policies. Since Apple remained calm with these claims and the company did not change the warranty policy, Belgian consumer group was the first of them who whiled an official complaint.
With all those hard negotiations, Apple ultimately changed its warranty policies on its website, terms and conditions and even removed AppleCare from brick-and-mortar store shelves. For those who are interested, Apple published an official document on its website highlighting the changes.