Apple excludes iTunes Store from $100 iPhone credit [UPDATE: Apple allows iTunes Gift Card purchase]

Apple Inc., offering $100 in credit to early iPhone buyers after cutting the price, excluded one of its most-popular items from the rebate: iTunes music,” Connie Guglielmo reports for Bloomberg.

Customers can buy ‘just about anything sold by Apple’ if they submit a rebate claim by Nov. 30, Cupertino, California- based Apple said today on its Web site. The company didn’t give a reason for leaving out iTunes,” Guglielmo reports.

[UPDATE: 11:59pm EDT: Apple: $100 iPhone credit can be used for iTunes gift cards]

Full article here.

Apple Store (retail and online) and Apple’s iTunes Store are two completely different entities, however the Apple Stores do sell iTunes Gift Cards, which Apple has specifically excluded from the $100 credit.

In their “Terms and Conditions for the $100 store credit for Early iPhone owners program,” Apple states, “Customers may not redeem their store credits at any iTunes Store in the United States or elsewhere [or] to purchase Apple Gift Cards or iTunes Store Gift Certificates [or] to give iTunes Store content as gifts or to create iTunes Store allowances.”

Apple probably excluded iTunes Store purchases due to the scant profits the store reportedly generates for Apple, which doesn’t necessarily make it right.

[UPDATE: 11:59pm EDT: Apple: $100 iPhone credit can be used for iTunes gift cards]

[2:35pm EDT: Revised headline and our Take to reflect that Guglielmo got it right and we initially got it wrong: Apple has excluded iTunes Store from the $100 iPhone credit. Sorry, Connie! Also removed feedback that would be confusing due to our error.]

23 Comments

  1. It doesn’t matter that the Apple Stores and the iTunes stores are separate entities. Both are parts of Apple, Inc.

    From Jobs letter of online apology regarding the iPhone price drop: “…a $100 store credit towards the purchase of any product at an Apple Retail Store or the Apple Online Store.”

    “Any product” means just that…ANY product. I would take that to include iTunes gift cards, which are sold in Apple stores and online.

    IMHO, Apple didn’t owe early adopters anything (as that’s just the way the tech cookie crumbles, AFAIC), however, the goodwill of that act of generosity has been seriously undercut by a restriction that just reeks of corporate cheapness.

    It seems Apple can’t make (an apparent) gaffe with making another (real one) trying to clean it up. Not that I blame Apple for trying, but it really appears they don’t have anyone onboard with remotest sense of foresight in public relations.

    I’ll lay odds that a significant number of people are very uphappy about this restriction. Not me, however. I’m just commenting the PR aspects from a PR perspective.

    Besides, I didn’t buy an iPhone.

  2. “It’s because Apple makes almost nothing on the iTunes sales and makes 40 to 50% on everything else.”

    It’s because they want to fleece you out of $200, and give you back “$100” which only costs them $50. Also they want you to buy something more than $100, and throw in some extra cash. Letting you buy exactly $100 of iTMS songs is not what they had in mind.

  3. I just got back from the apple store to redeem my $100 credit and only bought non-Apple products to ensure the least profit for Apple. I ended up spending 25 cents and came home with an iPod case, earphones and some blank DVDs.

    Make the most of your rebates folks and make sure Apple feels the pain.

  4. Just so you guys know…there doesn’t seem to be any technical reason that you can’t buy iTunes gift cards from the brick and mortar stores. Apparently the only thing keeping you from doing it is the employees themselves. I used my iPhone credit to buy a fifty dollars gift card *tonight* in North Carolina.

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