Deadly cheapo chargers spur Apple to slash its prices
Following a report of a fatality in China involving a counterfeit power adapter, the computer giant is offering trade-ins at 50% off.
Apple (AAPL) is hoping a bargain on its power adapters will entice consumers away from cheaper counterfeits.
The computer giant is slashing the price on its iPhone, iPad and iPod USB adapters (pictured) to $10, or about half off the $19 list price.
The decision comes after a 23-year-old Chinese woman reportedly died after answering a call while her phone was powering up via a third-party charger, Fortune notes. Another incident is said to have occurred several days later, when a Beijing man wound up in a coma after using a third-party charger, ComputerWorld says.
While Apple didn't directly address the death or injury, it wrote in a statement that "reports have suggested that some counterfeit and third party adapters may not be designed properly and could result in safety issues." It added, "Customer safety is a top priority at Apple."
Starting on Aug. 16, customers can drop off any third-party chargers at an Apple store or authorized service provider. Apple said it will dispose of the chargers in an "environmentally friendly way."
Replacements will be sold for $10 "for a limited time," but customers need to turn in at least one charger to qualify. The deal will end Oct. 18.
The offer to replace chargers comes at a delicate time for Apple, whose Chinese sales plunged in the second quarter. Local rivals are offering cheaper devices, while Samsung is rolling out new models at several price points, Reuters noted last month.
Apple is known for its high prices, and even at $10, the charger is more expensive than some rival devices. Take this charger offered on eBay (EBAY), which costs only $3.49. It also branches away from Apple's basic white, offering consumers a rainbow of colors to pick from.
Still, it's probably worth an extra $6.50 to get peace of mind while picking up a plugged-in device.
So 2 weeks ago, upgraded to I Phone 5 from 4. Had to buy a new car charger or plug adapter for $29.99. Come on! My husband upgraded his Samsung Droid and older chargers are all reusable.
Where is the consumer outrage on this system? A wire, plug and some plastic---$30?
How about bringing down the prices of many products. Also, have production plants in America that are regulated and give American's jobs.
Nice try, I guess, but doubt it will be effective. They are essentially saying, "Give us the adapter you paid $3.50 for, and pay us another $10, and we'll give you an Apple certified adapter." So one of these consumers effectively has to pay $13.50 for a $20 an Apple adapter (that has an inherently huge markup). If these consumers had $13.50 to spend on an adapter, they probably would have just bought the $20 one in the first place. This program won't do much other than act as PR against the segment who don't do math/logic.
A more effective "campaign" would have been to just drop the price to $10-12. Still more than the knockoffs, still with decent margins for Apple, but not so high as to bar a reasonable person from paying for the peace of mind.
Slave labor, why are people mad at Wal-Mart? Apple has Wal-Mart looking like Boy Scouts.
For what you pay for any Apple product, they should be made in America.
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The company has made at least 4 acquisitions in the space, and few people have paid any attention.
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