Tesco’s partial refund for iPad Air has me fuming

I bought an iPad Air from Tesco Direct in August 2014, which cost £399 and came with a one-year warranty. The iPad started charging intermittently in mid-April 2016, and about a week later stopped taking a charge at all.

The Apple store checked it for me and considered it be in good condition and that there had been no misuse, but said it would be too expensive to repair. It said it would have replaced it “like for like” under EU regulations as it was less than two years old.

I spoke to Tesco Direct on 5 May. Initially it refused to consider a replacement or to refund me, and ridiculed Apple’s suggestion that it would have replaced the iPad under EU regulations if I had bought it from them.

But I persisted and forwarded the report from Apple. Tesco has since offered me £155.

I said that I did not find this acceptable because the iPad is less than two years old and currently retails for £299. I don’t consider the offer to be a fair one. RW, Newcastle upon Tyne

Unfortunately, Tesco is continuing to refuse to replace or refund the cost of a new iPad. Its offer of a £155 refund takes into account the age of your tablet and when you reported the fault, though how you could have raised it any earlier is a mystery.

We have consulted the EU regulations (Directive 1999/44/EC), which show that the time limit Apple talked about is not a two-year legal guarantee, but merely means that retailers could be held liable for defects for up to two years from delivery. In fact, the UK’s Sale of Goods Act goes further by extending that liability for up to six years. But since the seller is only required to “assist” you if there’s a defect within this time, there is enough wriggle room for them to get off the hook, especially as the iPad is too expensive to repair.

Tesco said: “We were sorry to hear that our customer’s iPad Air developed a fault outside of the full guarantee period and have offered the customer a partial refund.”

As you paid for it in part with your Partnership credit card, which is jointly liable with the retailer under section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act, we suggested you try to claim from Partnership, which is run by HSBC. Having looked into it the bank is prepared to make up the balance of £244 “as a gesture of goodwill”, so you won’t be out of pocket.

We welcome letters but cannot answer individually. Email us at consumer.champions@theguardian.com or write to Consumer Champions, Money, the Guardian, 90 York Way, London N1 9GU. Please include a daytime phone number

comments powered by Disqus