Apple begins offering replacements for bogus USB power adapters

apple-usb-power-adapter-vs-ultra-mini-usb-charger

In light of a Chinese woman’s death and recent controversy over the safety of counterfeit USB power adapters, Apple has announced a new program that intends to rid the world of these potentially deadly accessories.

Apple states that customer safety is a top priority:

Customer safety is a top priority at Apple. That’s why all of our products — including USB power adapters for iPhone, iPad, and iPod — undergo rigorous testing for safety and reliability and are designed to meet government safety standards around the world.

The takeback program will allow any customers who feels their USB adapter to be faulty an opportunity to trade up for a genuine Apple -branded adapter at the discounted rate of $10. The program will kick off at Apple Retail Stores and Apple Authorized Service providers beginning August 16th, and will run until October 18th.

To qualify for the deal, you must turn in at least one potentially faulty adapter. You must also bring in your iPhone, iPad, or iPod to the replacement center. The deal is limited to just one replacement per iPhone, iPad, or iPod you own.

If you need a replacement adapter to charge your iPhone, iPad, or iPod, we recommend getting an Apple USB power adapter. For a limited time, you can purchase one Apple USB power adapter at a special price — $10 USD or approximate equivalent in local currency. To qualify, you must turn in at least one USB power adapter and bring your iPhone, iPad, or iPod to an Apple Retail Store or participating Apple Authorized Service Provider for serial number validation. The special pricing on Apple USB power adapters is limited to one adapter for each iPhone, iPad, and iPod you own and is valid until October 18, 2013.

Apple has noted, however, that they do not have the capacity to determine if an adapter is legitimate or safe. This program is intended to replace adapters for which you may have concerns. After the replacement, Apple will properly discard of the traded-in adapters.

[via 9to5Mac]

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  • bcsc

    Maybe if they priced these reasonably at first instead of $35 a pop, this woman would be alive. There is no way that these cost Apple more than $2 each to produce, so even this offer is a profitable cash grab. Don’t want to say Apple’s pricing outright killed this lady, but they sure didn’t price their products in a manner that makes legit seem better than counterfeit.

    • Chris

      Yeah my first reaction was ‘god forbid Apple ever GIVE something to their customers’ (given the requrement to bing in the customers iphone, ipad, ipod) even though I know that’s a little unresonable…

    • Gautam

      If you can afford an iPhone, then you should be able to afford a Apple power adapter which starts at $19.99 (http://store.apple.com/us/iphone/iphone-accessories/power), not sure where you got the $35 figure from.

      It’s like buying a BMW and then trying to cut costs going to a local repair shop.

      Don’t get me wrong, it may work most of the time, but there are higher risks associated with it. It’s the choice you make, no one forces you to make it.

      • bcsc

        Guess I must have been looking at the cost for the adapter and cable, which in Canada actually costs $41. And the BMW analogy really doesn’t work when carriers give iPhones away for free with a contract. And because of this, anyone can afford an iPhone. iPhone’s aren’t exactly a luxury item like a BMW. Nobody gives you a free BMW with a 3 year term do they?

        • Gautam

          Apple is raising awareness of the bogus power adapters and not the cables.

          When you talk about the cost of an iPhone it’s the ownership cost, which includes the monthly fees for talktime and data and hidden subsidies over the duration of the contract, which typically runs over $2000. So unfortunately everyone cannot afford an iPhone, and those who can, should be able to afford to pay $19.99 for an Apple power adapter.

          The BMW example was just to highlight people being penny wise …. u know the rest.

          • bcsc

            The woman who died is raising the awareness about this. Apple is profiting off of that.

      • Tim

        I always buy Apple adapters, they may be a bit expensive, but the quality is worth the price and peace of mind.

      • Dominic Costanzo

        What a retarded comment. First of all you don’t have to be wealthy to get an iPhone.. You can get them free when you sign up for a contract.. You can be poor and still own an iphone. And who the hell thinks BMW is anything special. Oh man those ritzy bmws.. Better goto the dealer because mechanics don’t know how to work on these extremely specialized cars.. BMW is a closely guarded company who keeps everything locked up so no one can properly fix one unless they are BMW gurus working for the man! Lol.. Really..

  • Mark

    They are about $35 in Australia as we get ripped off for everything in Australia especially apple stuff

  • Kiwiholden

    iPhone hacks can you post the story you did on the different between the build quality and extra components in the apple chargers compered to Samsung and generic chargers.
    Then people can see that they get what they pay for! Some cheap chargers are no more then straight through wires, not even changing the wattage

    • bcsc

      Here are your component prices based on an order of 1000 pieces. Now I’m sure Apples orders of millions of pieces nets them a pretty substantial discount much lower than these prices.
      Component Price

      0402 SMD resistor $0.002

      0805 SMD capacitor $0.007

      SMD transistor $0.02

      fusible resistor $0.03

      1A 600V (1J) diode $0.06

      thermistor $0.07

      Y capacitor $0.08

      3.3uF 400V electrolytic capacitor $0.10

      TL431 $0.10

      1.5uH inductor $0.12

      SCD 34 diode $0.13

      2801 optocoupler $0.16

      1HNK60 transistor $0.22

      USB jack $0.33

      100uF tantalum capacitor $0.34

      L6565 IC $0.55

      330uF tantalum polymer capacitor
      (Sanyo POSCAP) $0.98

      flyback transformer $1.36

      So as you can see, you do get what you pay for. You get $4.66 worth of charger in a rate that I could build them for, let alone the massively better price that Apple would get. If Apple were actually concerned about “Safety” as they claim that they are, they could still sell these for $5 and still turn profit during this program. But why do that when we can just make more profit and get some positive press. This is not really about consumer safety.

      • kiwiholden

        It’s called business! Take it up with every business world wide.
        Everything is valued at what we’re willing to pay which is always a lot more than its worth

      • kiwiholden

        Yes an back ally idiot and make a cheap charger but they don’t give a crap if you die or if your house burns down.