Following a recent introduction of iTunes carrier billing in Japan, Taiwan and Switzerland, this useful feature is now available to customers in Norway and Belgium, as first noted by MacRumors on Tuesday.
With carrier billing, customers can buy media on the iTunes Store, subscribe to Apple Music and purchase apps on the App Store without a credit or debit card because purchases are added to a customer’s mobile phone bill from their carrier.
As Apple gears up to launch the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus in an additional 40 countries this coming Friday, October 9, in-store reservations for the new handsets have gone live through Apple’s Reserve and Pickup program in Belgium, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the Netherlands, MacRumors reported this morning.
These six European countries are part of Apple’s second wave of iPhone 6s launch. Apple has said that the new iPhones will be available in a total of over 130 countries by the end of the year.
I’m based out of Europe and it’s always been a mystery to me as to why Apple lacks official retail presence in Belgium. Well, the company is finally opening its first brick-and-mortar store in the twelve million people market.
The forthcoming store will be located in Brussels, the largest city and capital of Belgium, the de facto capital of the European Union and headquarters for NATO, and is scheduled to open doors to customers on Sunday, September 19.
For quite some time now, Apple has been at odds with EU watchdogs who’ve been complaining a lot about the iPhone maker’s unacceptable stance and practices when it comes to educating EU buyers on their consumer rights.
At the heart of the issue: Apple’s unwillingness to explain to its users in an unambiguous manner that EU consumer laws entitle them to at least two years of coverage on consumer electronics.
As Apple’s standard warranty provides twelve months of coverage, the company was caught cunningly beating around the bush by attempting to upsell buyers to its pricey AppleCare+ extended protection plan, which it introduced last September in the United Kingdom, Italy, France and elsewhere in Europe.
Apple was even fined over this in Italy and now comes word that a Belgium judge has contemplated blocking access to all Apple websites in the country because the company has continued to mislead consumers about warranty protections available for products purchased from its brick-and-mortar and online stores…
The latest in Apple warranty shenanigans in Europe: caving in to pressure from a number of the European Union member states, the company has now updated its warranty policy in Belgium, giving all buyers two-year warranty as standard.
Remember, Apple’s insistence on upselling European customers to its paid AppleCare extended coverage has failed to impress authorities in Europe, where two-year warranty is required by law.
In Italy, for example, Apple was fined $264,000 in Italy over offering only a single year of warranty as standard…
Apple’s warranty adventure in the European Union is far from being over. After the company failed to properly communicate to its Italian consumers that they were entitled to a EU-wide two-year warranty (first warranty year provided by the manufacturer and the second by the seller), for which it was fined $264,000 last month and $1.2 million in March, now Apple has gotten itself into trouble with a Belgian consumer watchdog, Test-Aankoop/Test-Achats…