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Suing Apple

In the last five years, I’ve gone to court twice. Both times I was the plaintiff, both times I represented myself, both times the company I sued was represented by an attorney, and both times I won.

It wasn’t easy, though. In fact, the last suit took 18 months from beginning to end, and it cost me thousands of dollars in fees (which the defendant eventually paid).

In the end, I can’t really say that it was all worth it. My wins have been moderately-sizable, but after accounting for time, paperwork, and days off for trial, I probably could have made more money flipping hamburgers.

So why do I do it?

Frankly, I don’t know. I guess I’m just a glutton for punishment.

That being noted, it looks like I will once again be going to court, and this time I will be suing the biggest, baddest, most vindictive company of them all.

Apple Logo

Apple.

Yeah, that Apple. The one that commands entire police forces to do its bidding over even the smallest perceived slight. This, will be the most challenging suit of them all.

I’ve gotten ahead of myself, though. Some context is in order …

You see, I’ve owned computers for the last 20+ years. The TRS-80 Color Computer, Commodore 64, IBM PC — I was in the first wave of true home computer users. Since that time, I’ve been extraordinarily fortunate to have never had a machine completely fail. I’ve had a hard drive die here, a memory stick blown there, but I’ve been fortunate in that I’ve always been able to fix all of my hardware problems myself for a relatively small amount of money.

From the late-1980’s to the late 2000’s, all of my machines were either Windows or Linux boxes/laptops. They served me well, and for the most part, I was content with them. After years and years and years of being told that “they just work!”, however, I realized that I had never really taken the time to get to know the Macintosh platform. I felt computationally deprived. Unaware of a platform that, by all accounts, I really should know. Especially since they were the most reliable, trouble-free machines ever made. At least this is what I was told by people whose opinion I no longer respect on such matters.

And so, in 2008, I purchased a top-of-the-line, fully-loaded, 17” MacBook Pro.

The cost?

$4,500.

Yes, you read correctly, four thousand five hundred dollars.

Crazy, right?

Now, even though I spent the better part of 5 G’s on a premium machine … a machine which by all accounts “just worked” … every iPerson I encountered told me that I would be nuts not to buy Apple Care, the remarkably expensive extended warranty sold by Apple.

“Wait”, I replied, “If these machines just work, then why on earth would I need to pay five hundred dollars for an additional warranty?”

Crickets.

All of a sudden, the iPeople who had been so confident about the quality of Apple hardware seemed taken aback. Dare I say that my question both confused and confounded them. “Uh … everyone knows you get Apple Care, why wouldn’t you get Apple Care? Apple Care is good, it’s holy, it’s made from the drippings of the great turtlenecked one. Steve loves Apple Care, and so should you. Rex, get Apple Care, get Apple Care, get Apple Care and dance with us in the fountain of pixie dust and pink elephant dung!”

And so, I did. Another five hundred bucks into the ether. This brought the grand total of my machine to $5,100 after tax. A bargain, I was told, given the wisdom of my “investment”.

A week later, my machine arrived, and I was happy. I don’t know if I was $5,100 happy, but since it was a new machine, I still got excited. I mean, what kind of person doesn’t get excited when they get a brand-spanking-new computer?

Unfortunately, the honeymoon did not last long. About a month after I received the computer, I began seeing headlines in the tech press about a defective GPU that had been manufactured by NVIDIA. The chip was called the 8600M GT.

Oh no.

No no.

You know my brand-spanking-new $5,100 laptop?

Yeah, that one.

Well, it had an 8600M GT soldered to the motherboard.

F.

M.

L.

I was broken hearted. I emailed Apple. No response. I culled the forums. No information, just speculation. Finally, Apple issued a statement. They said that the MacBook Pros did, indeed, have the defective chip in them, but they assured customers that everything would be cool.

“Oh thank God!”, I thought, “Apple is going to show me their award-winning customer service. They were going to make this right. They were going to recall my computer, give me a new one, and all would be well.”

Unfortunately, this did not happen. Instead, Apple decided to take a gamble. Instead of giving their valued customers good graphics chips, they decided to replace the faulty chips as they failed. They reasoned that, if the 8600M GT cards could hang on just long enough for people to exceed their $500 warranties, the company could make bank on millions and millions of defective GPUs.

It was an impeccable gamble, and one for which Apple has been rewarded many times over in share price over the years.

The rest of us … the customers … however … did not fare so well in the scheme.

In September of 2011, my Apple Care expired.

In November of 2011, my GPU started flaking. Odd lines through the screen, extreme dimming during video-intensive tasks, all kinds of terrible things.

On the morning of December 31, 2011, the $4,500 machine died while playing a video, and will no longer boot.

It just works.

Three months out of warranty, my defective graphics chip breathed its last breath. The only computer I’ve ever had die. While the $1,000 Dell laptop I bought in 2001 is still purring along, still able to … well, it doesn’t do much … but I can still run Firefox on Windows 2000 if I really, really want to.

Still, I held out hope. I searched the web, and low and behold Apple issued the following release just a few months ago:

MacBook Pro Statement

Oh hosanna!

Apple was going to make it good. All I needed to do was contact them.

Next step, a journey through Apple’s “Award Winning” Customer Support. You know, the support that I am assured ranks #1 in every consumer electronics poll in America.

I called Apple Care, and after arguing with a robot … that’s right, award-wining support was answered by a robot that couldn’t understand a word I said … I sat on hold for a half hour.

When a human finally answered the phone, he told me that my “free phone support had expired”, and that I would need to make an appointment with a “genius” at my local Apple Store.

So much for the best customer service in the USA.

Still, I didn’t give up.

Today, I went to the Apple Store in the University Village, to meet with a, uh, genius.

While standing in line at the “genius” bar, another man looked at me, looked at my 17” MacBook Pro, then looked back up at me.

“Did yours die too?”, he asked.

“Yep”, I responded.

“Mine went yesterday”, he said.

“As did mine”, I replied.

Finally, after a comedy of errors in which they assigned an iPhone “genius” to assist me with my MacBook Pro, I was handed off to a computer “genius”.

He tried to boot the machine, and when it failed, he declared that “it wouldn’t boot”.

Ahhhhhh, now I see why they call them geniuses.

He also informed me that since it wouldn’t boot, he could not verify that it was the graphics chip that was causing the problem, and I would therefore have to pay for any and all repairs, which he would generously cap at six hundred and something dollars.

I was unamused by this offer.

The guy tried to explain himself, but I just stared at him incredulously until he started stuttering and tripping over his words.

“You you you you see, sometimes computers go bad, but even new computers go bad, and when new computers go bad, it means that computers aren’t perfect, so so so so so so we can’t just replace the components because we aren’t responsible for any defects because sometimes computers go bad and we don’t know what’s wrong but it’s possible that the fix will only be sixty dollars!”

I was confused. I looked at my companion, who gave me a weird look in return that asked “what in the hell is this guy talking about?”

Now look, I’m not being mean. I heard the guy talking to other people and he didn’t have a stutter. At least not usually. He knew he was jacking me, though, and he knew it was wrong. Deep down, he knew. He knew the “it won’t boot” thing was Apple’s get-out-of-replacing-GPU-free card.

“So, you’re going to charge me money to replace the defective GPU you initially charged me $4,500 for?”, I asked.

“Well well well well um yeah um but it might not cost very much!”, he replied.

I proceeded to explain my displeasure with the “genius”, firmly, but politely. I explained, calmly, that a $4,500 laptop that fails in 3 years and 3 months is defective. Period. I explained to him that a chip on the mainboard was known to be defective, and that Apple had admitted as much. I was calm, but at this point, I think my temper was starting to show, because I could feel that telltale flushness in my face.

I thought about turning around and going into an anti-Apple tirade, complete with profanity-laden warnings to any and all who dare make themselves the next iSucker.

Instead, I turned around, and I looked at the packed store of people playing with their new toys. I surveyed the area directly behind me, where a mother and two toddlers were sitting on a ball, playing some kind of jigsaw-puzzle game on an iMac.

I turned back to the “genius”, reached over, pulled the store power cord out of my machine, grabbed my computer, and walked away.

As I was walking toward the door, the man who had been in line in front of me, the one whose 17” had also died — stormed out, muttering angrily under his breath.

Another satisfied customer.

So, here I sit with a dead 17” MacBook Pro. A computer which cost me $5,100, and one which has been outlasted by every plastic whitebox PC and laptop I’ve ever owned.

In my three years of Mac ownership, I still find myself looking for that which inspires so much loyalty. Personally, the entire experience has been quite disappointing. Now, Apple has stuck me with roughly five thousand dollars of defective hardware, and they want even more of my money.

Since my machine will not boot, which is often the case with a dead soldered-to-motherboard GPU, Apple can neither prove nor disprove that the 8600M GT in my machine is dead. This being the case, they have taken the position that they are not responsible for anything.

My position, however, is that since Apple shipped the machines with a defective GPU, and failed to recall them when the defect was discovered, the benefit of the doubt should go to the customer. It is unconscionable for the burden of proof to be placed on the consumer, who through absolutely no fault of their own, were issued defective machines.

After all, we know with relative certainty that if the chip has not already failed, that it will at some point. Even if my machine were working flawlessly today, both NVIDIA and Apple have nonetheless conceded that the GPU is defective. This being the case, Apple has a legal obligation to replace every defective GPU shipped to customers since they are the ones who sold the machines.

They won’t, though. Such a move would anger shareholders.

So, how to proceed?

Well, I currently have three options:

1) Represent myself in small claims court and take my chances.

My damages will be topped off somewhere between $5,000-$10,000, but the suit will cost far less money to initiate, and I can do it myself.

Since Apple is arguably the most customer-hostile company on the planet, however, I’m sure they have a law firm in every city contracted to squash any consumer who dares challenge the behemoth. This, plus the big business slant of American courts means that my chances of winning are 20%, maybe 30%.

Then again, I have a pretty good track record in pro-se litigation … so perhaps we could bump that up to 40%.

2) Seek representation in a higher court.

Fraud, misrepresentation, violations of the law of implied merchantability … when a company distributes equipment known to be defective to millions of customers, they should be punished in excess of a single machine replacement. This path will require an attorney, but things such as punitive damages could be awarded.

3) Seek representation for a class action suit.

This is actually attractive, because I wouldn’t just be helping myself, I’d also be helping a lawyer who is already rich, get even richer. And really, isn’t this the American dream?

Oh sure, I’d love to fashion myself as a champion of the people, getting free replacement computers for everyone with a defective 8600M GT, but I’m realistic. Were I to win, I know that most of you would get nothing more than a free Ke$ha download from iTunes.

Still, as a deterrent, a class-action suit would have more teeth than a small claims or moderate claims lawsuit. It might not pay off for people who have already been ripped off by Apple, but it could prevent a similar thing from happening in the future.

The next time, maybe, just maybe, the company will issue a proper recall instead of just sticking people with defective machines and playing the warranty-failure lottery.

Either way, my first step will be to send a certified demand for payment directly to Apple sometime this week. If they issue me a refund check or a replacement machine, then of course I will have no basis for a suit. Honestly, this would be my overwhelming preference. If I know Apple, however, and I think I do … I’m not going to get anything. They’ll either fail to reply or invite me to go pound sand.

Ten days after my demand has been issued and ignored, I will then have a decision to make. 1, 2, or 3.

I’m not sure which one I will choose, but I promise you one thing: I will choose one of them. I am going to pursue this to the very end.

I’ll keep you updated along the way.

At the very least, if you ever decide to make your own stand against a huge, multi-billion dollar corporation, you’ll know what you’re in for.

28 comments to Suing Apple

  • Disco Stu

    Sorry you have to be the one to pull back the curtain on this company. The $500 warranty would be funny if so many people didn’t accept their offer. For $500, people could often BUY a laptop. Those types of plans are sucker moves. I do understand the term as used, but you have to admit that Apple puts their stuff in nice white boxes as well.

    Again, congratulations on pointing out that this company does indeed “think different”.

  • Chuckreis

    I know it is meaningless but file on the BBB website.

    I have done it against Samsung and the parent company of RCA and gotten good results.

    I had a Samsung DLP TV that developed a horrible problem a month or so out of Warranty. It was a design flaw and they wanted to charge me $800 for repair. Once I filed with the BBB they took care of it, I think I spent $200 on the repair but that was for in house, if I would have driven the TV to the service center 80 miles away it would have been free, but I am lazy.

    I can only guess companies fear the BBB rating hit and the possibility of class action suits more than they do someone bitching to customer service.

    Also going the Consumerist route might work.

  • Steve

    Please do not use the new app, I-Quit.

  • CUNTS

    THEYRE ALL CUNT,S HOPE U READ THIS MOTHERFUKERS APPLE DIE

  • james

    Responding on my $500 Dell laptop from Walmart that hums along just fine. Thanks for waking up and leaving the cult.

  • Pipeguy

    why in the name of allah would you buy a $4500 laptop… i don’t think even Steve Jobs had such a powerful machine..but oh well… I’ve had a macbook pro for 4+years and not a single problem and I’m about to buy a MBair shortly..plus my iPad is working like a charm and I love my ipod..iCloud is a thing of beauty…I was also recently castrated…while Apple is imperfect it’s still light years away from other stuff out there…to use SJ’s lingo, other computers are shit..

    • Seattle Rex Seattle Rex

      While your preference is duly noted, and I suppose … respected, the statement “while Apple is imperfect it’s still light years away from other stuff out there” is (to be kind) specious.

      When it comes to computers, Apple uses the same commodity hardware as every other manufacturer (Intel, Hitachi, NVIDIA, etc), and uses components often made in the exact same factories as the bargain brands.

      In fact, I once pulled the DIMMS on an iMac and was mortified to find that the $500 “Apple Memory” was, in fact, Hynix memory. Hynix is the cheap commodity stuff that used to hang in the bargain bins at Circuit City. Serious builders wouldn’t touch the stuff.

      Not only are Macs not “light years” away from similarly-priced PC’s, dollar-for-dollar, they are often laughably under-specced. Especially with regards to memory and disk storage.

      Profit margin captures the spread between what a manufacturer pays for a product, and what you pay for a product. Apple has the highest profit margins in the industry.

      Now, if you’re talking about design, that’s another argument altogether, and it is one that is purely subjective.

      That being said, two months before buying the $4,500 Mac, I bought an $800 HP Laptop. Whenever I needed to transfer photos from an SD card, I first had to pop it in the HP, the transfer it over to the Mac.

      You see, at that point in time, $4,500 didn’t even buy an SD card slot for the Macbook.

      Light years.

      Oh, and the $800 HP?

      It’s still running strong.

      The $4,500 Macbook?

      Dead.

      Light years indeed.

    • Chuckreis

      And by light years away, I assume you mean OSX is behind Ubuntu (and some other flavors of Linux) and iOS is behind Android.

      The only thing Apple beats others at is limitations caused by their desire for you to consume only their approved applications and the applications they can profit from.

  • Jonathan Bruck

    Sign me up for the class action lawsuit. My 2008 Macbook Pro spent Thanksgiving 2011 at the Apple store getting repaired, out of warranty. I was “lucky” the genius explained to get the logic board replaced for $300.

    • Vasant Srinivasan

      Yep, Sign me up too. My macbook pro was had the same issue, however they did not cover it under the repair programme because they had no way of telling that problem was because of the card. I had to pony up 700 $ for repairs.

  • DC

    come on. You used that computer for more than 3 years.

    Get a life. It’s a shame having an apple user like you.

    Don’t you have money to buy a laptop?

    I guess next time you will sue apple again to get another free laptop when the “new laptop” is dead.

    • Mike B

      So wait… you think it is ok for Apple to produce $4500 laptops that completely stop working after three years of use?

      I can tell you that if this becomes a trend with Apple, I will never buy another one of their products… regardless if I “have the money”.

      And next time, pay attention when you read. If you did pay attention, you would have seen that this had nothing to do with trying to get a “free laptop”.

    • Drew

      Wow, dude…Really? I hope you’re being sarcastic. If not, then don’t worry, it sounds like you won’t have to be shamed much longer as this unsatisfied customer won’t be an Apple user after this debacle.

      Personally, I spent $300 on a Compaq Presario 5 years ago and it’s running just fine, and all I’ve replaced is the battery.

      I also, more recently, spent $600 on a Sony Vaio, that has specs and performance that blow my $1800 MBP out of the water. Luckily, my MBP is a work laptop, so I didn’t have to flip the bill for it.

      Apple products are far from superior, and I’m sorry you enjoy paying so much for them.

  • John C

    It’s strange! I have the 17 inch early 2008 Macbook Pro, which died. I couldn’t boot it. Nothing! Dead! I brought it to an Apple store, they said it could probably be fixed if I agreed to pay them the $400 fee after they check it out, so I agreed to leave it there with them. I was called a week later, “it’s fixed, come pick it up.” When I arrived they said it was a faulty graphics card, and that they replaced the WHOLE LOGIC BOARD! That was the strange part to me! The FREAKY part was that they said,”NO CHARGE! THIS IS A KNOWN ISSUE AND WE REPLACED THIS FOR FREE”! I was stunned! I took the machine home and have been using it since! I loved them for that, even bought 3 computers from them since! Maybe they need to treat their customers like I was treated. I think my future dollars are more important to them than the court fee dollars they spent on your case – what was the point in rejecting your similar situation? Why did I get a new machine? I never buy Apple Care, nor any extended services. You are smart writing this blog, I think they are more interested in public perception than being in court.

  • Ben Jansen

    My story is almost exactly the same.

    2008 macbook pro, black screen on boot. I took it to the apple store and told them that this was a common issue and the apple store genius laughed it away.

    I had to pay €700 but ended up taking the laptop home. Then, after a whole lot of googling I found a page on the apple website which basically said that they would repair these faulty cards for free even out of warranty.

    Printed that out and headed back to the store, got it repaired in the end but it left a very bad taste in my mouth.

  • Jay

    I had the same problem with my MBP that was manufactured with the same GPU and was told it was a logic board issue. Even though there was a documented history of issues with the GPU, the genius basically told me it was like a car that all of a sudden malfunctioned…..wtf! These people are idiots. I wish I would have taken them to court at the time; and I hope you do file a class action lawsuit. Apple should be held accountable for their unethical business practices, and maybe a nice big lawsuit will help them grow a fucking conscience.

    Oh @DC in regard to your asinine comment, if the life of a Apple computer is presumed to be 3 years then Apple should explicitly state it. Considering they claim to make quality products and sell them at exorbitant prices, they should back up their products with quality customer service. In addition, the issues at hand is not whether we (the customers) understand that electronics break at some point…the central issue is that Apple knew their computers had defective GPU’s….DEFECTIVE. Nvidia stated it and then Apple confirmed it. If that was the case and Apple pretends to uphold a high standard, then why didn’t it recall the computer and replace the GPU. I’ll tell you why? because they banked on them lasting long enough to no longer be liable (i.e. lasting longer than three years for those with apple care and lasting longer than a year for those without Apple care)

    Fuck Apple!

  • SeattleDane

    Last October, while away in California for two months, my GPU bit the dust. Thankfully I had an ipad with me to research all this with a otherwise useless computer. I purchased the computer in June 2007, so I was actually well past the applecare and even the 4 year extended NVIDIA fix that was offered. I figured I was screwed. I took the computer to the Orange County apple store (where I was for that weekend for a wedding). I was told after some quick diagnositcs, “Yep, it’s the NVIDIA card. Fortunately, this is a known defect, and it’s covered for life.” I explained to him that I was actually going to be up in LA for a month, and if I could get the repair done closer to LA, it would be ideal. He said no problem, started a repair order for me, gave me a sheet with bar code for transaction and said take it anywhere for the fix.

    I arrived at the Glendale store, only to meet resistance. They said I was past the 4 year window, and they wouldn’t repair it, even after my explanation from Orange County and showing my repair order that had been started. The genius spoke with three managers who would need to “override” the system in order to approve. None of them approved. I left, dejected with a broken MBP.

    I called Orange County back to complain and the woman on the phone (a 2007 MBP owner herself) said that if one of their geniuses said they’d fix it, then they would fix it. I drove an hour back to Orange County, they took the computer, replaced the logic board at no cost, and had it done in 24 hours. It was impressive really and made me appreciate the difference between stores and their levels of customer service. I realize this story has a seemingly opposite outcome as yours, but figured you’d like to know that SOME of the retail stores out there still have some hope. Maybe it’s just that orange county has a much more demanding clientele, so they bend over backwards for everybody. Either way, saw that you came out ahead in the trial. Congrats!

    • ChristyB.

      @SeattleDane, which store in OC?

      This just happened to me this morning and I am about 7 weeks beyond the 4 years (purchased 03/22/08).

      I’m in OC and would love to know which store I have the best shot at!

  • Craig

    One month ago my 15″Mbp screen went dead. I suspected a video card problem. Apple confirmed that the serial number was one of the affected ones with the nvidia issue. BUT because the computer wouldn’t power up, they couldn’t verify the problem. Seems like a similar story. Apple told me there was nothing they would do.

  • RC

    I had the same experience with Apple over this issue with my MacBook Pro (15-inch, Early 2008). I applaud your efforts that have pushed this issue into the media because it affects or will affect a significant number of computers. Apple initially refused a no-cost repair of my computer after it failed to boot. After long and at times heated negotiations, Apple accepted the repair on a goodwill basis. However, the repair was not done correctly and the computer overheats and crashes every 5-10 minutes. Apple will not acknowledge these new issues and I am considering filing litigation against Apple as I believe this would be granted class-action status given the number of failures.

    Their handling of the situation is deeply disappointing and I have since decided to never purchase an Apple product again– I have was a die-hard Apple enthusiast and customer since the 1980s.

  • Nauta Sinneau

    Kudos, man. This is like a repeat of the same kind of crap I went through with my 2003 iBook G3 and the GPU failure, but Apple actually repaired my machine four times with the same defective logic board and on the fifth repair, replaced it with a G4 iBook I still use today. It was the biggest pain in the ass, too, when I told them it would fail again they just said “Then bring it back to us” despite my appeals to the fact that I was a college student, lost hours of work, papers left on the drives I asked them to not reformat and they offered to back up my data with a fee.

    I cannot really answer the question as to why I still use Apple hardware, given this kind of service. I guess it’s the lesser of the evils, or something.

  • forumhero

    7 days ago my early 2008 MBP 15″ won’t boot up. after reading this I went to the local apple store today with a print out of apple’s knowledge in hand, but was told they cannot do anything for me since the laptop won’t boot. I am extremely upset that they refused to replace a part they do not have to pay for.

    I sincerely hope there is a class action lawsuit for this as I cannot afford legal action

  • Ben

    I just had a similar experience. My graphics card failed, went to the Apple store and was 3 weeks passed the 4 year deadline.

    I find it ridiculous that neither company made an effort to reach out to their customers who may be at risk for a failing card. I’m attempting to get someone from Apple or Nvidia to respond to me and cover this issue. No luck so far :(

  • rupert

    Same here. I have a MBP 15″ 2008 model which won’t boot after having shown some strange video artifacts on screen. I called Apple (Switzerland). They told me that they couldn’t do anything because the computer wouldn’t start-up and that the problem was related to the motherboard and not the video card. I asked how they could tell that the motherboard was faulty but got no conclusive answer.

    Sign me up for the class action.

    Good luck
    Rupert

  • Miles

    Well, if Apple was not a monopoly none of this wold be happening. That’s why I won’t buy one again – ever.

    I was a proud owner of a classic Apple ][ back in the day – 16KB RAM; and the best show special was another 32K for $100! It ran and ran and ran. Very cool.

    Some time.. and many computers later.. I bought a Mac IICI. Very happy with it.. until the games I had on my Mac OS5 which were no longer available.. stopped working after Apple came out with OS 7. Bought a PPC with the dealer’s assurance that Apple was committed to the PPC so I had nothing to worry about. [The store, part of a small chain started by Steve Woz’s brother, was across the street from Infinite Loop.).

    I don’t remember what OS it was, but it was 8 or 9 – before OSX came out – anyway that update wouldn’t work on the older PPC I had – and the helpful store guys told me it was because my PPC didn’t have firewire. Now, I understand if I don’t have firewire, I can’t use any firewire devices; but I had NO firewire devices, and didn’t really care. Apple has engineered the OS so that it would not boot up on a machine that was older than a couple of years.

    I powered down the old PPC; bought myself a new Dell, and have made a point to never be an Apple customer again. It’s frustrating to see apparently smart people falling for the ‘every year’ upgrade on their overpriced phones,p[ads and laptops. Yep.. OSX looks nice. Buying apps is easy. But I’m an android owner now; have been for a few years, since the first Motorola Droid came out.

    By the way… another thing that snags my wagger is the way Apple intentionally uses a patented connector that costs a bunch (and by their monopolistic ways, means no clones are available); then they sell you a replacement cable for $50 or more… a 3 foot keyboard cable. (Of course, like other Apple products it IS made or virgin rainforest white plastic that’s worth (more than) it’s weight in gold. No thanks tho.. I’ll pay less for more rugged products. I have to work with my computers; they are not for looks and Angry Birds.

  • YK Kim

    Hi, I feel sorry for those who had bad experience with MBP 2008 G-card and Apple Inc. However, I would like to share my good experience with you guys though I am not sure if I am the only good case.

    I also have a 2008 MBP using it well so far, which had a black screen problem in 2010. I could boot the MBP but screen was totally black. When I called Apple shop at Northbrook court, North Brook, IL The person was so kind answering everything well. I gave them my MBP and got a call back with kind explanation that my logic board had a problem. Even though 1 year warrant was over, the person said it would be free for repair. Apple did good job for the case. I felt that it is worthy to be an apple user.

  • Tr00f

    Bad experience?
    I have 10 of these machines and Apple said because they are over 4 years old now most will not be eligible DESPITE all of them having several replacement boards in them in the last year…..
    It is crap , seriously and I am fed up with e-mailing and getting crap answers.
    read you blog, a class action seems to be the only thing left…..

  • PAUL BREWER

    Regarding this thread POSTED ON
    PAGE 15 – PLUS LOTS MORE INFO AND STORIES THERE

    I WISH TO THANK EVERYONE WHO HAS POSTED HELPFUL ADVICE & INFO HERE!
    There have, rightly, been many cries for help and reasonable or just service from Apple expressed in this thread:

    My story was that in Sept 2008 I purchased a MacBook Pro 15-inch A1260,
    cost £1730. It only ever had very light use and hardly even left the house, but recently died completely.

    This Mac was fitted with the NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT graphics processor , subject of a $200 million lawsuit between Nvidia and Apple and acknowledged by Apple to be faulty and subject of the ongoing 4 year replacement program listed here

    The video chip IS directly soldered to the logic board, so often the logic board is also damaged by failure , details here

    Apple service said “Although there is a Warranty Extension Program running to cover the replacement logic board under warranty, the unit needs to be less than 4 years old to qualify (which it is) and needs to FAIL the NVIDIA Graphics Test.”

    However, in many cases, the machine can not be started so the test can not be run or return a result. Apple then say “ no test result, so its not the faulty video chip, and you have to buy a new logic board unless you’re still covered by service care or warranty in some way”

    This appears to be Apple telling us that their software test of the GPU is reliable, even if (again, in many cases), the logic board is so damaged that the external drive the test is running from can not acces the GPU because of the thermal damage already caused to the logic board!

    I took the matter up with Apple UK. It was a major struggle, involving first taking the Macbook to an AASP for an abortive test before several days of negotiating my way by phone through Apple Care techs at differing levels before finally being allowed to speak with an “Apple Customer Relations Officer” even though the senior Tech assured me that it would NOT affect the ” no free repair” outcome.
    HOWEVER, after some reasonable conversations over a period of a week or so with a businesslike but ultimately sympathetic Customer Relations Officer, it WAS AGREED THAT MY COMPUTER WOULD BE REPAIRED AT NO CHARGE. This duly and swiftly happened and I got my Macbook back as new from the AASP, with an £800+ bill paid FOC by Apple.
    I did point out that when I started using Apple Macs they had B/W screens and 8MB HD’s: also that I had turned hundreds of peole on to Macs in the last 30 years and I couldn’t do that any more if they were this unreliable: I expect a premium product like a Mac to not only look great and work better than anything similar, but to last at least 8 years without any major ( or even minor ) faults. After all, a colleague of mine still runs a substantial business from the 2nd hand eMac, now running OS 10+, that I sold her in the 90’s.
    And I can hardly imagine Dell, Lenovo, et al turning round and giving me a free major repair on a well out of warranty laptop: so, on balance, YES, APPLE ARE OUT OF ORDER, because the fault is widespread, well known and documented, and the test is inappropriate for the circumstances of many of the faults caused by the known to be flawed chip: but, hey, I GOT MY MACBOOK BACK FIXD FOC so I’ll give then credit where it’s due for that. Hope this helps some of you get yours fixed too

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