An Apple retail store in New Jersey has taken back an order of original iPads and replaced them with iPad 2 units for a class at Rutgers' Center for Management Development, according to Forbes. In a move bound to annoy everyone who bought an iPad just before the iPad 2 was released and found that it was too late to return it, Apple isn't even charging a restocking fee even though the iPads had already been customized.
The class was scheduled to start shortly before the iPad 2's release date on March 11, so the school had gone ahead and purchased the tablets (the students actually pay for them and keep them after the class is over). The article doesn't say exactly how this deal was arranged, but it's safe to say that someone at Rutgers followed my mom's perennial advice, "If you don't ask, the answer is no," and made a phone call to the local Apple Store. From the article, it is clear that Rutgers has a regular cycle of classes that use the iPads, which no doubt made it a little easier for Apple to show such extra flexibility.
Of course, no good deed goes unpunished, so I'm sure there will be a whole host of people complaining that they didn't get the same offer. If you did happen to order an iPad recently, it's definitely worth a visit to your local Apple Store or a polite call to Apple support. Just remember, you're not a university sending tens of thousands of recurring dollars to Apple, so don't be too surprised if you don't get the same deal.
[via The MacObserver]