[PSA] Removing Activation Lock for Macs with T2 chip.
This is a Public Service Announcement for everyone to make sure to obtain an original Apple Store receipt when buying a secondhand Mac. The removal of activation lock will only be resolved by submitting original Apple Store receipt.
I bought my 16” 2019 Macbook Pro here through r/appleswap and the previous owner bought it sealed refurbished through Swappa. So the original owner(person from swappa or whoever sold it to him did not have the apple reciept which was required by the activation lock team to remove the lock.
I went through multiple senior apple advisors. Went to the apple store and had a genius tech help me. Wrote to the Apple Developer Team support. Spoke to Customer Relations and nobody was able to remove the activation lock. I sent whatever information I had and the previous owner had from appleswap (swappa reciept showing serial#, paypal reciept, screenshot of the macbook being under my iCloud account. None of this was enough to remove the activation lock. The only way it was going to be resolved was with an official apple reciept. Email or paper copy.
I understand now that I should have probably not bought on appleswap without the original reciept. However before the T2 chips were introduced to the macbooks(2018 and later) All that was needed to make sure that the Macbook was safe to use was to make sure no iCloud account was attached. This was my first time purchasing a secondhand Macbook that was made after 2018. I had bought two Macbook Pros before this (2014 15” and 2007 15”).
My whole gripe with this problem is that there was no previous person who we could contact to get the details to remove the activation lock since Apple never removed the lock when they refurbished it because the previous owner before me bought it sealed refurbished from swappa so he was technically the first user to attach his iCloud on the Macbook Pro after the refurbishment process.
The second issue is that the activation lock got triggered after I was attempting to install the Big Sur beta software in the beginning of July. I understand beta software comes with bugs but as a user who uses Xcode to build applications I had a reason to install it. I had also used the Macbook for a whole month before this issue arose.
Third issue is that this was a KNOWN issue in the apple developer forums. Plenty of people who were original macbook owners could not access their macbooks with their own iCloud accounts. Apple decided that they would just ask everyone for their apple reciept leaving secondhand owners to be left with dead weight.
Fourth issue is that the first apple advisor i spoke with assured me that the way to fix the issue was to remove the macbook from my iCloud account. I believe that if it was still attached I might have had better luck proving the Macbook was mine. Apple team completely disregarded this fact that I kept bringing up.
I understand the security behind the T2 chip and the activation lock. But if I was able to show them proof that I had it attached to my icloud and proof of receipt from a previous seller with the serial number why would this not be sufficient to removed the activation lock that they themselves forgot to remove during the refurbishment process?
I’m currently still trying to figure out what to do with the macbook that I paid almoat $2500 for. I could do a chargeback or open a case in paypal to get it resolved but then that leaves the previous owner with the same dead weight.
By far the worst experience i’ve had with apple throughout all my years of being a customer. I guess some things you learn things the hard way. Always ask for the receipt.
Had to make an edit to add a few more details.
This is a screenshot from my phone. Same one I sent to apple proving that the mac was tied to my account and I enabled Find My Mac from the Macbook. How was I able to do this if the activation Lock said it was not tied to mines? Also apple asked me to remove the mac from my account in order to remove the activation lock. Thus now leaving me with no connection the macbook i have in my possession that nobody has marked Lost or stolen.
This is just a Macrumors Forum thread detailing several people with the issue. Most affected were 2019 16” MacBooks that had installed Big Sur Beta. Same macbook I have in my possession. Thanks