If you signed up for the iPhone Upgrade Program last year, you were probably looking forward to trading in your iPhone 6s or 6s Plus for the new iPhone 7 or 7 Plus on launch day. But then pre-order time came on September 9, and you were left with a message to check back later.
Recode is reporting that some customers are frustrated enough to sue Apple over it. The lawsuit says, "While scores of customers signed up for the program and were ready to take advantage of the every-year upgrade with the release of the new iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, Apple had a different plan in mind. It allowed non-iPhone Upgrade Program customers to snap up the limited inventory of the new devices while telling countless iPhone Upgrade Program customers to ‘check back later. [sic]"
Indeed, the promise of the Program was that customers could get a new, unlocked iPhone with AppleCare+, pay a monthly fee, and trade in the phone for the new one when it comes out. That is certainly not how things played out.
One of the problems with the iPhone Upgrade Program is that it forces the customer to make the reservation to pick the phone up in-store. For example, if you bought a Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus and had it shipped to your home, Apple will ship it to you. It's sold out, so it might take a couple months before it gets there, but you'll eventually have it.
The in-store reservation system just doesn't work that way. Once the in-store stock runs out, Apple just tells you to check back, rather than telling you that you'll have a reservation when stock is available in October or even November.
The lawsuit was filed today in the U.S. District Court in Northern California. It's seeking "an injunction and unspecified damages" for Brooklyn's Emil Frank, along with anyone else who is a subscriber of the iPhone Upgrade Program.