Apple Inc. (AAPL) Gets Reactive on Warranties…Again

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has had a standard one-year warranty coverage policy on all of its devices for quite a while now. The company has always believed it was being generous when it offered free repairs or replacements on various iDevices within the first year of purchase, including any parts or labor to fixed a broken device – provided the user didn’t throw it against a wall or drop in in the lake on the most recent fishing trip.

A Leading Company Cheaper Than 90% Of Blue Chips... And It Recently Bounced 12%A few years ago, in an effort to protect consumers against inferior products, the European Union countries all passed their own laws that essentially required all products sold in those countries to have two years of warranty protection backed by the company producing the product. The laws have been on the books for a while now, yet companies like Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) have seemed to be slow in responding.

The  company has essentially applied its warranty policy worldwide without regard to the particular laws in that country, and there have been media and consumer groups in those countries that have been pushingApple and other tech companies to recognize their individual countries regulations and to honor them. Apple got into a similar spat in China last year, when the Chinese media wrote a series of stories critical of Apple using remanufactured parts to repair iPhones instead of brand-new parts as Chinese consumer-protection laws demanded.

Consumer watchdog groups in several EU countries have all spoken up in recent months, with some even filing lawsuits against Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) on behalf of consumers, trying to force Apple to change its warranty to be compliant with EU laws.

While Italy is looking to shore up its consumer protections and has its eyes on Apple, one report is out that says that Cupertino is finally acting on Belgian consumer law and is extending its warranty on devices in that country to two years, including free repair.

While it’s a nice gesture, why do you think Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is reacting so much to these warranty laws and complaints from consumers? Why doesn’t Apple just comply from the jump? We would like your feedback on this and whether you think the bad PR is actually good for Apple in the comments section below.