On Friday, the web was abuzz with Verizon iPad 2 customers claiming that there orders were intercepted by Apple, with the FedEx tracking showing the orders nearly reaching their destination before being updated with a “package returned to shipper notice”. An Apple Store employee also revealed that the company’s retail stores have also been provided with a list of serial numbers of Verizon iPads that are to be pulled from inventory and returned to Apple, suggesting that the problem with Verizon iPad 2 are a widespread issue.
Apple has given all the stores a list of serial numbers to scan, if it’s a match we were told to set aside and ship back to Apple, these are only for Verizon ipads. This was to be done on Monday and continue to scan all shipments thru June 11. I had over one hundred to send back.
Another Apple Store employee has also mentioned that the issue actually derived from Verizon, after they accidentally duplicated Mobile Equipment Identifiers (MEIDs), issuing on the bad batch MEIDs that had been previously used on other Verizon iPads.
When users with iPads carrying duplicate MEIDs attempt to set up cellular data accounts, the system sees their devices as having already been set up. This issue can be fixed with a simple removal of one MEID and a double check to make sure everything is operating, however, Apple will feel the brunt of the recall, as they have felt in the past.
Apple is now stopping the sales of the affected iPad 2, and recalling those already in trasnit to customers, possibly scaling back the ship date from the current 1-2 weeks. The Cupertino based company has yet to make any formal public statement about this issue but has told to The Wall Street Journal this issue is “extremely small”.