October 18th 2007
By Mike Flaminio
Ars Technica reports that apparently reliable sources state that up to 800 Apple Retail Store employees have been fired for cashing in their $100 iPhone credit...on phones they got for free.
Apple gave its retail employees gratis iPhones upon release. But Jobs' about-face on iPhone pricing in September, which included a $100 Store credit for all original iPhone purchasers (note purchasers) resulted in some employees seeing a loophole and applying for - and receiving - the credit.
According to Ars, Apple did hire a bunch of people for its Stores a few weeks ago, suggesting they were preparing to fire the naughty ones. If the story's accurate, in our book, frankly, it seems ludicrous to risk your job (and not a bad job, at that - we mean, it ain't bustin' rocks) for a mere $100 worth of Apple Store fruit. Especially when Apple was nice enough to give you an iPhone, which it was under no obligation to.
I've never been an Apple employee, but I've had a good relationship over the years with what used to be the PowerBook repair division, as well as Apple Authorized resellers. You want to keep it that way and I don't see any point, say, in trying to claim a warranty repair for something I was responsible for breaking, for instance. Trying to rip off a company for the sake of a mere $100 or few hundred bucks just isn't worth it, if it means jeopardizing the relationship at the same time.