Apple extends takeback program for unofficial iPhone chargers to Europe

Apple extends takeback program for unofficial iPhone chargers to Europe

Summary: Apple is offering authentic USB iOS adapters at half price for customers that bring in old, non-official ones.

TOPICS: Apple, Hardware, iOS, EU

Apple is offering consumers in the US, China and now Europe and Australia discounts on its own device chargers when they drop in counterfeit or third-party adapters.

Customers can purchase Apple-made adapters for iOS devices, which usually cost $19 in the US, at a roughly $10 discount when they return a third-party adapter to one of Apple's retail stores or its authorised service providers.

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Apple announced the program for the US and China first, but has now extended it to the UK, France, Germany, Canada, Australia and Japan.

The program begins in all other markets on 16 August after beginning in China the previous week, following Apple's confirmation in July that it was investigating an incident where a Chinese woman was electrocuted when she picked up her iPhone while it was charging.

According to Apple, the takeback campaign is meant to tackle "safety issues" linked to some counterfeit and third-party adapters that may not go through the same testing as Apple's own.

"Recent reports have suggested that some counterfeit and third party adapters may not be designed properly and could result in safety issues," Apple says on its support page.  

"While not all third party adapters have an issue, we are announcing a USB Power Adapter Takeback Program to enable customers to acquire properly designed adapters."

Although the program is aimed at non-Apple USB adapters, it will in practice be open to iOS device owners who bring in old authentic adapters since Apple says its retail and service partner staff cannot advise them on the authenticity or safety of the adapters they bring in.

Upon exchange, the authentic adapter will cost $10 in the US, AUD$14 including GST in Australia, CAD $11 in Canada, £8 GBP (including VAT) in the UK, € 10 (including VAT) in France and Germany, 1,000 yen (tax included) in Japan, and 68 RMB in China.

The offer is limited to one adapter per iOS device and will be available until 18 October.

Apple has detailed on its website how to identify adapters that come from the company, such as the green dot on its 5W USB Power Adapter for the iPhone 4, 4S, 5 and iPad Mini, although some counterfeit ones look remarkably similar.

Safety science company UL, whose logo appears on Apple’s authentic adapters, issued an alert in March after discovering counterfeit iOS adapters bearing its own logo. tell tale signs the products were counterfeit included imperfectly copied Apple markings, such as “Designed Abble in California” and “Designed by China in California”.

Topics: Apple, Hardware, iOS, EU

Liam Tung

About Liam Tung

Liam Tung is an Australian business technology journalist living a few too many Swedish miles north of Stockholm for his liking. He gained a bachelors degree in economics and arts (cultural studies) at Sydney's Macquarie University, but hacked (without Norse or malicious code for that matter) his way into a career as an enterprise tech, security and telecommunications journalist with ZDNet Australia. These days Liam is a full time freelance technology journalist who writes for several publications.

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  • Or...

    Or they could just sell these things for a raesonable price in the first place and avoid the headaches and bad publicity that comes from people blowing up their iPhones with third party chargers.

    And it's not just Apple, of course. The outrageous prices that manufacturers charge for repalecement power supplies, batteries etc. is just obscene. A charger for your laptop can easily cost $100 or more from a company like Lenovo, while a compatible third party unit goes for under $20.00 on eBay. Currently the charger for my ancient Lenovo X61 lists for $55.00 on Lenovo's website, and $8.00 on eBay.
    • It's all about the "add ons"

      that's their money makers, not the high end products, in many cases. In the end, after subsidies, plans, ect Verizon nay make $50 bucks from that iPhone hardware sale after the two year contract.

      But add on a car charger, case, screen protector, each at $25 profit, and now you're talking.
      William Farrel
      • You keep telling yourself that

        All that is needed is simple arithmetic to see that Verizon makes MUCH more than $50 on the hardware over the course of a two year contract.
        ALL the additional fees that you pay over BYOD are essentially paying for your hardware, as are the increased rates charged to subsidize your renewal plans. In fact, you may end up paying well over $1500 for a phone that would have cost only $600 if purchased outright.
        • What BYOD??

          Please tell us how BYOD has anything to do here?? Do you know what BYOD means??

          If you are talking about a FULLY PAID device, please tell us what is the difference in monthly fees .... because you can either pay in full and pay EXACTLY the same monthly bill for 2 years or get a discount on the device and pay the same monthly build for the same 2 years.

          So please explain what the hell are you ranting about??
          • You do realize that there are other countries besides the U.S., right?!?

            Relative to how much customers pay in OTHER countries that have BYOD plans, U.S. subscribers pay significantly higher rates over the life of their contracts for the device.
            And in addition, a number of U.S. carriers are adopting a hybrid model, were you can get cheaper plans if you have a device already. Which you'd know if you'd bothered to check before posting.
  • Re: takeback program for unofficial iPhone chargers to Europe....

    Apple have unjustifiably taken much flack over the counterfeit and third party chargers fiasco. Such accessories are beyond the control of Apple therefore it is admirable they are offering this service.

    Furthermore and in particular China counterfeit Hardware is rife much of it iPhones. Apple CANNOT be held responsible.

    Simply solution is purchase from an official Apple Dealer or even better direct from the Apple Store.