Q. Is it really true that when Apple replaces the battery in your iPod, it doesn't return the same exact iPod? A friend told me Apple replaces iPods with refurbished ones. He also said the new one doesn't have your music on it.
A. You know, I had not thought of this until you wrote so I did some research. As it turns out, the answer is yes. If you send your iPod for battery replacement, you won't get the same one back. Apple will replace the iPod with either a new, used or refurbished unit.
For that matter, iPods sent for any type of service are replaced. And Apple won't transfer music or data from the old one. So it's important to back up your iPod before sending it in. In fact, Apple requests that you remove all data from it.
You probably already have a copy of your music on your computer. If you use your iPod as a portable drive, back up the data. Connect the iPod to your computer and drag the data to the hard drive.
When you get the "new" iPod back, you can transfer your playlists and music to it. iTunes automatically synchronizes it. If you've turned off automatic synchronization, you can manually transfer songs. Simply drag them from iTunes to the iPod icon.
With a FireWire or USB 2.0 connection, two or three songs transfer per second. Still, if you have 20 gigabytes of music, it can take a while.
You should also think about custom engraving. If your iPod was engraved by a third party, the replacement won't be engraved. However, if Apple engraved your iPod, it will engrave the replacement unit.
You can replace the battery yourself and there are places that claim they can do it. But the iPod warranty says that it does not cover problems caused by unauthorized work. So if you open the machine and mess it up, the warranty probably won't apply.
I hope that this helps all of you who bought/were given one.....