Brief news items of note for Lifehacker readers, including: South Australia have a good chunk of money for their space program, Animal Crossing is coming to mobile phones, makeup tutorial video absolutely terrifies me.
I'm a big fan of iFixIt's teardowns and ratings for tech gear. When I was running an IT department for a school, the ability to repair and upgrade a device easily was a significant factor in hardware choices. In particular, being able to add memory to extend a device's life and easily repair or replace a keyboard (students can destroy keyboards) were important. The European parliament has revealed plans to introduce ratings, similar to those given by iFixIt, as well as other safeguards for consumers.
Are extended warranties really all that necessary, considering the protections Australian Consumer Law offers?
The selling practices of the extended warranty industry were recently made subject of a review which has resulted in a set guidelines of aiming to "provide greater transparency" into what consumers are being told by retailers. Two companies in particular (one of which is part of the Harvey Norman group) have been instructed to follow a new set of guidelines.
If you're buying a new iPhone, you should probably factor the extra cost of Apple's optional device insurance, AppleCare+. For a one-off fee, AppleCare+ will cover the cost of a couple of repairs or replacements from accidental damage. With the launch of the iPhone 7, though, Apple has changed the pricing of AppleCare+ in Australia -- making it cheaper to replace a smashed screen but more expensive to fix anything else.
Dear Lifehacker, I remember reading on your site a while ago a great article on the new Australian Consumer Laws, stating that if a device breaks in an 'unreasonable' time then a consumer has a right to ask for a repair or replacement. So here's the issue: I bought a $1700 Asus laptop (the stylish Zenbook) from JB Hi-Fi in March 2012 that has just gone kaput. The screen is white and scrambled. JB won't help as its out of warranty, and Asus tell me they don't even make the screens any more so can't fix it either. Does 4 years for a $1700 laptop fall within the 'unreasonable' time frame outlined in the ACL? What would you do?
Yesterday afternoon, we attended the Australian launch of the LG G5; an intriguing Android smartphone that boasts a modular design with a host of snap-on peripherals. But arguably the most exciting announcement was LG's commitment to replacing smashed G5 screens for free -- not questions asked. This is something we're seeing more and more of as smartphone vendors look to win over prospective customers. But so far, Apple has refused to come to the party. What gives?
Everyone's been a recipient of a gift that doesn't work, something that doesn't perform as functioned or maybe you've been given an item that's actually been recalled. If that's the case, it's worth brushing up on your statutory rights under the Australian Consumer Law -- because most salespeople don't know them.
Dear Lifehacker, I am looking for a new TV and thought you may be able to help. I'm considering either a Samsung UA60H7000 (factory second with 5yr warranty) for $1850, or an LG 60LF6300 new, with 1 year warranty for $1800. I can't work out which is the better buy! Would you be able to help me? Cheers, Sam.
Dear Lifehacker, What are my consumer rights when buying a refurbished product from a business in Australia? How does it affect the warranty? I'm looking at some refurbished TVs from a reputable Australian dealer. The stated warranty is for 3 months, which doesn't really seem "reasonable" for a TV, especially if you are still paying $1500-$2000 for it. What would the options be if the TV developed a fault which wasn't listed in the description outside of that period?
Hey Lifehacker, I saw yesterday's question about warranty repairs for older iPhones, and I have a related issue. I have an iPhone 4s, and the contract doesn't finis until April 2015. If Apple stops making the iPhone 4s when the "iPhone 6" comes out later this year, how can I get a replacement if the phone stops working under warranty?