In order to meet compliance with Australia’s consumer protection laws, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has extended its standard warranty on its products from one year to two. Mysteriously, though, an in-house email obtained from a local news source says specifically that the employees in Apple’s retail stores are not to talk about the change with customers.
In January of 2011, Australia passed a law that required a “reasonable” warranty period for devices, but did not say specifically what defined “reasonable.” For expensive gadgets such as televisions, the law suggests that warranties should cover the device for at least two years.
Apple had a one year warranty policy in place, with the option of buying extended time. Now, the standard time has been bumped up to two years, but Apple isn’t giving any details as to why the company is intending to keep it hush-hush. Apple did not respond to a request for comments.
Rod Stowe, Fair Trading Commissioner for the New South Wales government, called hiding details of the two year warranty “rather surprising and disingenuous,” and added, “To instruct your staff to not let people know is something that seems of quite concern, and I don’t understand why they wouldn’t want to be upfront about it, Apple seems to be generally one of those businesses that is quite responsible to problems.”
Apple’s one year warranty has landed the company in trouble in other places, too. The Italian Antitrust Authority has fined the company nearly $1.5 million for issues stemming from its AppleCare program.
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