Apple has closed a loophole in the US that allowed buyers to take advantage of its education pricing even if they're not actually a student or a teacher. As noticed by a Redditor, the US Apple Store now requires buyers to verify their status via UNiDAYS to be able to purchase MacBooks, iPads and other devices from its education portal. The tech giant's education discount typically knocks off 10 percent from a device's original retail price. It applies to currently enrolled and newly accepted college or university students, as well as teachers and faculty/staff at a school for any grade level.
The change happened sometime over the past few days, based on snapshots from the Wayback Machine, which don't show the UNiDAYS verification requirement even in its latest record for January 17th. Prior to this change, Apple doesn't require its customers in the US to verify their status unlike its stores for other locations such as the UK that have long required UNiDAYS authentication. It didn't even ask for a .edu email address. The company simply occasionally checks customers at random and then charge the difference to their credit card if it determines that they're not truly eligible for the education discount.
Now, when buyers go to the Apple Education website, they won't even be able to see the device listings. They'll have to click through to the UNiDAYS' partner page for Apple first, where they need to sign in or register for verification. Once they're in, they can buy what they want, so long as it's within the device limits for the promotion. Buyers can only avail of the discount for one desktop, one Mac mini, one laptop, two iPads and two accessories per year.