Apr 08

Apple snobs SuperDrive problems

Yesterday I got a call from Janine Beach (Executive Relations, Apple Asia/Pac) to state that Apple regards that the problem with the SuperDrives (as reported here, here, and here) is a correctly functioning SuperDrive. Apple’s official line is that there is no problem burning on 8x Apple media so the drive is fine – even if it fails to recognise any other brand or speed of media. This means you can ONLY use Apple media in the drive – as even 16x TDK discs do not work correctly. There was no notification of the fact that Apple SuperDrives would only burn as advertised on Apple media – and when I stressed this point, I was told by Janine that the drive works as it should, and Apple would not be doing anything about it. After telling Janine that this was unacceptable, I was basically stonewalled.

For this reason, I am asking anyone who has experiance in lodging official complaints with the ACCC or starting class action law suits to contact me to discuss the best approach in making Apple accountable for thier faulty equipment.

Updated 10/4: I understand that Apple Australia employee email accounts are the first letter of their first name, then their last name @asia.apple.com – so Joe Smith would be jsmith@asia.apple.com if people want to contact someone within Apple about their SuperDrive issues as well…..

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  1. How do I file a complaint with the ACCC?

  2. The ACCC is an Australian Government body that regulates markets. To get an understanding of what they do, check out http://www.accc.gov.au. There is probably an equivalent body in your country. It would be best if you lodged a complaint in your country – as the ACCC can only do anything for Australian citizens.

    In other countries, such departments may have names like Consumer Affairs, Office of Fair Trading, or similar.

  3. Ok thanks. Is there any way to talk to an apple employee about this? Im not in Asia/Pacific area so….And My 90 days free phone support just ended.

  4. I would still talk to the phone support guys – ask for the matter to be escalated. Either that, or take it into your local AppleStore and get them to test it. Take in a heap of discs that you know don’t work and get them to lodge a TAC case on it. The more people report this, the better.

    • Tom Lee on May 15, 2006 at 2:10 am
    • Reply

    Thanks to Steve, I initially emailed Janine Beach, who then kindly forwarded my email to her counterpart here in the US. After sending me a generic email and leaving a voicemail message, he’s been unresponsive. I sent one final email to him, expressing that I am not seeking anything from Apple personally, but that it would be nice if: 1) Apple acknowledged that there is a problem; and 2) Develop and post a firmware fix for the drives.

    Thus far, not a peep from Apple. Undoubtedly, my emails are forwarded to the VP in charge of Silly Correspondence, who then passes the bits to the great Digital Black Hole for final processing.

    • Megs on June 4, 2006 at 10:04 pm
    • Reply

    Hey Steve,

    If it was advertised that the SuperDrives could burn on any branded media, or anything leads you to reasonably believe that the SuperDrive is able to burn on non-Apple media, and they don’t, then there is someone you can complain to.

    And lucky me, as soon as I try to check who you should contact in the ACCC, their site goes down for maintenance.

    But the best thing to do, is try to find other people who have the same problem, make the problem public. If it’s a widely recognised problem Apple will come under fire to fix it or at least change their advertising.

    The ACCC wouldn’t be able to make Apple fix their dodgy stuff, because it’s an international company, but it’s also another pressure thing…

    Hmm….

    • Alex on January 28, 2008 at 7:58 am
    • Reply

    If I were told by Apple that the Super Dive, if working well with Apple branded media then I would challenge them to show me that in the minimum system requirements. I would not take that as an answer from Apple.

    Apple doesn’t even make their own media I’m sure, they simply add their logo and brand.

    All Macs are not designed to work with Apple branded media only…that is ridiculous, that AppleCare agent didn’t know what she was talking about. I would ask to speak to someone in customer service or a manager.

    If, and this is a BIG if… If Apple sold macs to work only with their media it would have to be documented. No where in their documentation does it specify that you must use Apple branded media to burn, granted some media is better than others and this is a case of the manufacturer of the media and the drive but all in all, a good rule of thumb is to NOT buy the cheapest media…get a brand name.

    Again, I urge you to call Apple and challenge them on the point that their optical drives can only burn successfully to Apple branded media…ridiculous

    • Alex on January 28, 2008 at 8:11 am
    • Reply

    Check you consumer law rights in Australia…not sure.

    Tell me something though, what is the issue your having with your drive?

    You can’t burn? I don’t get it…take your mac to an Apple Authorised Service Provider. You still have AppleCare on your Hardware right? If it’s not burning just take it in to a Service Provider that’s all. They will diagnose it and if they find something wrong with the drive they will repair it…that’s it. Don’t make a big deal out of nothing. I don’t really understand the issue.

    Executive relations at Apple came to some conclusion but you can take it to a Service Provider if you have AppleCare on your machine.

    Or go here http://www.apple.com/au/contact/ and write to their corporate office. Thing is as long as you are being honest with Apple and telling them, what I assume is a hardware issue your having, Apple will consider it. In your letter mention that there is no where in the minimum system requirement s for burning media, Apple branded media. That’s it, you have a clear cut case. What’s the problem? Your making a big deal out of nothing, the drive is not even made by Apple. I don’t understand how your case got to exec. relations.

    I would like to know what the issue your drive is having is so we can help you but visit a service provider for them to look at your mac, if you have AppleCare left on your mac then you can certainly go.

    If you are outside the 90 days phone support…purchase and Apple Support Line per incident, so that you can support on one issue.

    • Alex on January 28, 2008 at 8:17 am
    • Reply

    I have something else to say here…many times people put down Apple about drives not working as specified on the packaging etc. and people complain that Apple deletes posts on their discussion forum.

    Let’s see my comments here are awaiting moderation approval…well well, double standard no but wait here me out.

    An optical drive is prone to the media in the drive, if you buy low quality, aka cheap media, your drive will not burn as well or burn with errors. If you buy good media things can be much different.

    Point is people sometimes like to cut up Apple when in fact the complainers are the ones doing something wrong and then making a bad impression.

    I don’t think for a minute your story is unfounded but I recommend, again, visit a service provider and get it diagnosed. You don’t even have to mention anything to them about your contact with executive relations, why even bother.

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