Applecare provided me with a refurbished 1GHz iBook in December 2004.

Apple or Lemon?

2004 - a really bad year for my iBook!
600MHz (dual USB), 20GB hardisk, DVD/CDRW (combo), 128MB + 512MB RAM
Purchased in February 2002, it was perfect, until September 2003.
Downhill from then on, I discovered it was a worldwide problem
- iBook users in the US were considering class action suits until Apple finally responded.

An iBook diva takes a dive from her days of glory

  • March 2002 - The iBook and OS X prove exceptional out of the box to the airport and then to India for the IUCN/SSC Otter Specialist Group "Otters and Wetlands" workshop. Read about the trial by fire in "From 8.6 to X".
  • October 2002 - At the 12th Workshop on Managing Potential Conflicts in the South China Sea, the pc laptop on duty cannot project but the iBook with it's super strong 14.1" battery, combo drive and powerpoint compatability save the day . Read "While the hour glass turns...".
  • September 2003 - my luck changes: The power adaptor fails at the 13th Workshop on Managing Potential Conflicts in the South China Sea at Medan Sumatra. I have to use a 22.4k modem line, a PC and powerpoint to generate a critical presentation to wow the audience! Read "Madness in Medan - when an iBook sleeps...".
  • Dec 2003 - Feb 2004: Problems galore renders me essentially iBookless for 3 months! In seperate visits, the motherboard is replaced twice, the top and bottom cases are replaced, and the lcd is replaced.
  • December 2004 - HD clicking, I borrow a 12 inch iBook for my presentation at the Biology in Asia International Conference, and struggle with it as it fails to wake up from sleep!

Purchased 28 Feb 2002.
Applecare until: 28 Feb 2005

Apple Singapore has improved and responded to this. See comments about the improved Applecare on my blog, 26 Mar 2004

Applecare @ Apple Computer South Asia Pte Ltd
7 Ang Mo Kio Street 64, Singapore 569086.
Website: (doesn't work).
Hotline: 6835-1812
Tel: 6486-6524
Fax: 6484-2609
Email: ascamk AT

Kamisah Mahmood
Customer Service Officer
AppleCare Service Centre

Opening hours:
Mon-Fri: 9am to 7pm
Sat: 9am to 3pm
Sun & PH: Closed


Record of Applecare jobs, 2004
Each return required 2 days re-customisation of reinstalled hardisk

  • [ss2004-06] ASC10779 - 13 Dec 2004 [1 week]
    • 1. HD clicking sound; frequent failure to start up.
    • 2. White patches on screen (appeared in Sep 2004).
    • 3. Modem failure
    • 18 Dec 2004 - returned my call to say they intended to replace with a refurbished 1GHz/40GB.
    • But unsure if my 512MB RAM was compatible, AppleCare not extended
  • [ss2004-05] ASC8107 - 15 Jun 2004 [2 weeks]
    • Sent in direct to AMK, collected 01 Jul 2004.
    • 1. Adaptor emitted orange sparks.
    • 2. LCD Display flickers at half-brightness.
    • Solution: Motherboard replaced twice, powercord and adaptor replaced.

  • [ss2004-04] ASC7101 - 26 Mar 2004 (direct to AMK) [unsolved]
    • 1. LCD Display flickers at half-brightness.
    • Solution: Could not duplicate screen display problem (they put to full brightness so did not detetct);
    • AppleCare Manager waives charges; reassures me that changes are in place. We have been exchanging emails and phone calls, hence I send in direct to AMK); ECSS may be the cause of delays.
    • See blog post on Applecare Singapore.


  • [ss2004-03] ASC6723 - 25 Feb 2004 [2 weeks]
  • ASC under Kwan, ECSS
  • Originally sent in on Fri 13 Feb; see Blog post: 3rd time lucky]
    • 1. Firewire port failure.
    • 2. LCD screws edge chipped.
    • 3. Unrecorded - USB port failure.
    • Solution: Replaced motherboard; tightened LCD screws. (USB was fixed as well).
  • [No serial number. Suspicious about motherboard replacements, I stop Mac advocacy]. Hanx intervenes.


  • [ss2004-02] ASC6527 - 05 Feb 2004 [Held for more than 2 weeks]
  • ASC under Kwan, ECSS
    • 1. Fungus on LCD screen.
    • Solution: Replaced LCD.
  • Daniel Tan (Me@n) offers to loan me his lime iBook on OS8 for the interim.


  • [ss2004-01] ASC5972 - 02 Jan 2004
  • ASC under Kwan, ECSS
  • [Held for one month, returned with fungus on screen!]
    • 1. AC adaptor intermittent power.
    • 2. Power port not working.
    • Solution: Replaced top and bottom case and motherboard; AC adaptor tested okay.
  • ECSS CSR No. 23916 27 Nov 2003
    • 1. Power socket loose,
    • 2. Adaptor intermittent power,
    • 3. Cannot charge battery or powerup,
    • 4. HD hangs during bootup