Apple stores in Việt Nam denied providing warranty to local users

May 31, 2023 - 10:59

Illegal modification is a reason that Apple authorised stores refused to grant warranty.


Clients choose to buy Apple products in an Apple store in Ha Noi. — VNS Photo Doan Tung

HCM CITY - Many iPhone users are upset with Apple authorised service providers (AASP) in Việt Nam after their phones warranties were not honoured.

Illegal modification is a reason that Apple authorised stores refuse to fulfil warranties. On the disclaimer of the warranty, Apple Vietnam does not specify any components that have been modified or replaced, according to Trung Đức, an iPhone user in HCM City.

"I bought a genuine iPhone from an Apple reseller with a warranty so why should I have to take it to be repaired in another phone stores. My phone was bought with an original seal but Apple Vietnam said it was modified, which is ridiculous," said Đức.

An unnamed person from AASP revealed to that many warranties between 2022 and 2023 for iPhone devices are denied by Apple Vietnam. Rejected devices were mostly iPhone 11 and iPhone 13 Pro Max.

Thu Hiền, a resident in Tân Bình district, HCM City said she bought an iPhone 13 Pro Max at an authorised Apple retail store in August 2022. However, in April 2023, her phone encountered an error of not turning on and losing signal so she brought her phone to the store to be repaired. After more than two weeks, Hiền was informed by the store that Apple Vietnam refused to honour her warranty because her phone was already opened by another phone store.

Hiền affirmed that she did not bring her phone to any phone store for repair since she bought the device, adding that she did not drop her phone on the floor or into water.

Hiền lamented that she felt frustrated. "I spent cash to buy a genuine product but I was refused by Apple Vietnam to honour my warranty for unknown reasons. The store offered to send my phone to a third party for repair noting that they would do it for a fee but I have not agreed yet," she said.

A representative of AASP said that the company does not disclose details to avoid warranty fraud. The company is afraid that many people, who specialise in warranty fraud, will discover the warranty verification process and take advantage of it.

This representative affirmed that Apple Vietnam would not provide evidence if phones show signs of unauthorised interference to avoid leaking the process out. The company’s carefulness in the warranty verification process is partly due to the fact that there have been many Vietnamese traders interfering in phones with other components.

In addition, there are many cases of errors where iPhone users in Việt Nam are not allowed to enjoy the benefits of their legitimate warranties.

He noted that his repair centre received many cases of warranty denial for unknown reasons. Some cases of newly-unboxed iPhone were also denied.

Response from authorised Apple retail stores

According to representatives of Apple authorised retail stores (AARS), in Việt Nam retail chains only play the role of an intermediary to distribute the manufacturer’s products to users. Warranties are Apple’s responsibility and retailers have no right to modify the product.

The AASP asserted that it was not allowed to decide whether to refuse product warranties, that all must go through Apple’s process.

Under the company’s regulations, after an AASP receives a phone from a retail chain or user, they will do a detailed diagnosis of the errors. Then, AASP will check the system to determine whether the device is provided with warranty services at the centre or they must be transferred to Apple Vietnam for in-depth inspection of the error of the mainboard, the chassis or the identification of the phone’s internal components.

The representative of AASP said the warranty process will be designated by Apple Vietnam, therefore, the ASSP must follow their rules. The ASSP is allowed to refuse to honour a warranty if they have photographic evidence that the phones were dropped into water or showed signs of illegal interference that could be seen by the naked eye.

When users are denied warranty services, retailers and customers will have to send their complaints vie Apple’s call centre for rechecking. It is said that the percentage of phones successfully provided with warranty services are only between 10-20 per cent.

A trader of genuine Apple devices in Việt Nam assessed that tightening warranty regulations is a good action for the market and local users to avoid fraud. However, it is undeniable that this action is making users impatient when spending tens of millions of đồng to buy an iPhone, but they do not receive warranty services when their devices have errors.

Việt Nam is one of the biggest consumers of Apple products in Southeast Asia. - VNS