Apple "fiasco" leaves customers out of pocket

Camera debacle gets messier...

Camera debacle gets messier...

Angry customers have rounded on Apple over its handling of cancelled sales of a digital camera bought on the company's website, as exposed by silicon.com.

While Apple remains tight-lipped on the debacle, aggrieved customers have been quick to speak out about the company's failure to deal with the situation effectively.

Many have criticised the fact Apple took payment for the items and in some cases took almost a week to refund the money. This is despite the fact Apple claimed it didn't have the stock and would not be able to honour the orders at any point when cancelling the sales.

The fact Apple still offered the same camera elsewhere on its site led many to believe the company had actually cancelled the sales because the offer price was a blunder. Some customers claim Apple staff even told them the camera was no longer manufactured.

silicon.com reader Henry Carey said: "Not only did we get a confirmation email we also had payment taken. If that's not a deal-sealer then someone please tell me what is."

In cases such as this the initial offer and subsequent order confirmation by the retailer are not necessarily binding, depending on terms and conditions, according to legal experts. Apple's terms and conditions state the sale is not confirmed until payment has been taken and the transaction confirmed.

In this instance the sales were cancelled after money was taken but before the sales, rather than the initial order, had been confirmed.

So while Apple may legally be on firm footing, aggrieved customers believe the way the company has handled the "fiasco" is certainly far from sound.

Carey added: "Apple's customer services told so many different stories to people over a 24-hour period that it's impossible to ever know what the truth of this whole fiasco actually is."

Another reader, who chose to remain anonymous, said: "The total stonewalling by Apple is the worst thing."