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Old Oct 17, 2012, 08:20 PM   #1
Orange Furball
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Samsung: The Story of Terrible Customer Service

Hello, There are many reports of Samsung's customer service being terrible. When buying my phone I was thinking that I would never have to use Samsung's customer service as I always baby my devices, but I was wrong. Due to a well known defect in the plastic lip on the device, small cracks form over time. They are only about a millimeter or two each, but if your phone is in otherwise pristine condition it can be a very annoying problem. Here is a small piece of knowledge you should know about me, when talking on the phone I have trouble being stern and fighting for what I want. Especially if the person has an accent (not that there is anything wrong with that, I just can't understand them very well.). Continue reading for the whole story, in every detail I can remember!

This started on September 27, 2012. I had my sister call Samsung and explain the problem. Several users have reported the same issue getting solved by either a quick fix or a simple replacement. I was expecting nothing less than a quick fix. A few minutes after hanging up I received an email from Samsung with my ticket number and a UPS shipping label. I immediately started packing when a user on XDA-Developers told me that he got a replacement without having to be without a phone for 10 days, so I called Samsung 2 more times asking for a replacement. They never transferred me to Advanced service or Executive service so I figured it was a lost cause and send my phone in the next day. Because of the small size of the defects, I printed out 3 HD full page pictures of the cracks and circled them. I put them directly by the phone in the box hoping that the technician would get it and be able to solve the problem easily. The part that needed to be replaced costs $30 on eBay and includes the metallic bezel and the white lip. I can do this repair within an hour if I had the parts. The phone was received by Samsung on October 3, 2012. I received no other communication that there were problems so I assumed it was under warranty and would be fixed. They shipped the phone back to me on October 5, 2012.

On October 9, 2012 the phone was delivered to my house. Upon unpacking the phone I noticed that it was filthy. There was a layer of dust/dirt on the screen. I didn't care as long as the phone was fixed. I glanced at the white lip and saw that there were two dents in it, upon looking around the bezel I saw all three of the cracks and one more (probably form shipping). My mom called back immediately and asked why it wasn't fixed. They responded with confusion and we were transferred to Advanced support. They said it must have been a filing error and that they were sorry, we had to schedule another repair. I'm very mad at this point. How do some users get a replacement phone free on the first try and I have to wait 12 days to get nothing done, then send it in again for even longer? I pack it up with no pictures this time. Just the device in some bubble wrap (6 layers to be exact. Enough to protect it from even the biggest hit.). The phone was shipped out for the second time on October 10, 2012.

On Friday October 12, 2012 Samsung got the phone. No repair was attempted on this day as it was Friday. This was understandable because I wouldn't want to start a repair right before a weekend either. October 15, 2012 comes and with it another email from Samsung. This time it's an update that my repair cost has changed. Just in case you forgot, the original issue was with cracks on the white lip on the side of the device. Now in this email I see "After careful inspection, the repair cost for your product has changed. Please review the following important information and instruction." I read further down and see in large orange letters "$197.01". I freak out. I read what the charge is for, an LCD repair fee for $117.00 and a Standard repair fee for $65.00. Now why on earth would the LCD have to be replaced? I first went on the Samsung Live Chat as this is supposed to be a replacement for their phone service. I get no where and was told to call for more information. So I called. After asking why I need to pay for this repair that doesn't need to be done about 5 times and saying that this is my second time sending it in I was transferred to Advanced customer service, which I think is just another employee who the problem gets passed on to. I hand the phone off to my dad and he takes it away. Asks why they want $200 for something that is their problem. The guy said that the LCD is either cracked or it's an internal problem. Duh. Anyway my dad said that they need to file their own claim with UPS as the phone was damaged in shipping. The phone's LCD was perfect when I sent it in. Some words about not supporting a product were said and we were transferred to Executive customer service.

Let me inform you that Executive customer service leaves at 8:00 PM CST (but the phone support stays open until 9:00 PM CST). It is 7:45 PC CST when we are transferred. The music stopped and it started to ring, then a busy tone came, and finally the line went dead. He called back and was transferred to Advanced after 5 minutes of explaining what the problem was. Advanced said the Executives left for the day, she scheduled a phone meeting on the next day at 5:00 PM CST. My dad left his work number for them to call as he wouldn't have been home yet.

The next day he gets home from work and he told me that he missed the call. So apparently he called back and went back up the line to Executive. Finally after about an hour of persuading they agreed to fix the LCD, which isn't even broken, and the cracks for free. I think okay everything is good again ill have my phone by early next week. The next day I got an email from Samsung saying that the repair was once again on hold. This time for parts. At this point the phone has been gone for 20 days. With the weekend coming up the phone will have to shipped tomorrow in order to get here Monday. I want to know how long the parts take to come in so I called again and asked. Put on hold for a few minutes. Guy comes back and says he doesn't know. They aren't informed about parts and can't give me an ETA. We will see what tomorrow brings and ill update the thread if something else happens.

****Cliff Notes Version****

Samsung ignores my phone and doesn't repair, I send it in again and they try to charge me $200 to fix an LCD that works perfectly. A few calls later they agree to fix everything free. Now its on hold for parts and it is day 20 of not having a phone. In short, Samsung doesn't care about customers and will try to screw them any way possible. The next phone I buy will NOT be a Samsung phone. Congrats customer service, you lost a customer.

-Matt The Angry Samsung Hater.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 03:48 AM   #2
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I have a Samsung GS3 and find your treatment absolutely disgusting. A better way would have been to swap your phone straight for a new one. Customer service would have an enhanced reputation and a happy customer. Come on Samsung, play the game.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 05:22 AM   #3
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Ridiculous
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 05:36 AM   #4
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Apple's customer service is not always perfect, but they seem to have enough authority to do what makes sense without having to pass decisions up the corporate food chain. At least you were able to talk to human beings at Samsung, which frankly is better than what Samsung used to offer, so at least Samsung is trying to raise their game.
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Last edited by VulchR; Oct 18, 2012 at 11:14 AM. Reason: oops - a critical 'not' was missng.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 05:54 AM   #5
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Apple's customer service is always perfect, but they seem to have enough authority to do what makes sense without having to pass decisions up the corporate food chain. At least you were able to talk to human beings at Samsung, which frankly is better than what Samsung used to offer, so at least Samsung is trying to raise its game.
I think you nailed down the biggest difference. Their phone support actually makes decisions for themselves. Occasionally a supervisor needs to provide assistance, but the Level 2 techs can authorize an advance replacement themselves. It saves do much time and frustration.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 09:21 AM   #6
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Sucks about your experience. I have had pretty good luck with there service. Once quite a few years ago a DLP TV of there's kept burning through bulbs, they sent a technician out and he replaced a control board. Fixed it.

More recently I had an issue with an LED TV and the same thing, technician came out and had to replace a capacitor I believe. Fixed it.

I have bought quite a few tv's from them (they don't know that) so the problem rate isn't outrageously high. Never had a mobile Samsung device though.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 09:42 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by VulchR View Post
Apple's customer service is always perfect, but they seem to have enough authority to do what makes sense without having to pass decisions up the corporate food chain. At least you were able to talk to human beings at Samsung, which frankly is better than what Samsung used to offer, so at least Samsung is trying to raise its game.
The biggest draw Apple has for them is the retail store. Phone messed up? Take it in and they will fix it or swap it out. But you're right about the phone support....always seem to try and go out of their way to get a problem resolved right them. Passing you over to 3 or 4 different levels of support just doesn't generally happen. Part of why brand loyalty tends to be so strong for Apple I guess.

Sucks to hear about this type of crappy service OP. Hopefully it gets resolved sooner rather than later.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 09:48 AM   #8
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The biggest draw Apple has for them is the retail store.
This is the only thing I am 100% envious in the smartphone field. Even though Apple's "Geniuses" aren't perfect or that "genius" (and scheduling is a gigantic pain), it's amazing that there is that support there. No denying this is one area that Apple can't be beat.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 09:53 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by daveathall View Post
I have a Samsung GS3 and find your treatment absolutely disgusting. A better way would have been to swap your phone straight for a new one. Customer service would have an enhanced reputation and a happy customer. Come on Samsung, play the game.
Agreed, I've never had to call Samsung customer service, but the Samsung Mobile USA folks on twitter have always been very helpful.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 11:28 AM   #10
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Damn. I got wound up just reading what you went through there. Disgusting customer service.

The only times I've had to have a repair done on a handset was twice via HTC. First time was my Nexus One which completely died around a day or so of getting it. Fearing that it wasn't even out in the UK (I ordered from Google direct in the U.S), I expected a disaster. To their credit HTC sent me a replacment Nexus One in 5 days.
Second time the power button started having issues and was repaired a second time in a 5 day turnaround.

Thankfully, I've never had to deal with Samsung so far so I can't judge their UK support but your service experience sounds absolutely s***.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 11:51 AM   #11
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Thanks for the support everyone. I just wish Samsung could read this. They usually just pass problems around to other employees. When we had a problem with apple we called and within 15 minutes it was solved.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 11:52 AM   #12
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How vile... this is really a case where Apple reigns superior since they have retail stores.

Makes me glad I can just sidestep all that and do work on my phones myself. Sure it voids the warranty but after fixing hundreds of iOS and Android devices without any problems or incidents I am confident I do not need the manufacturer warranty.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 12:04 PM   #13
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How vile... this is really a case where Apple reigns superior since they have retail stores.

Makes me glad I can just sidestep all that and do work on my phones myself. Sure it voids the warranty but after fixing hundreds of iOS and Android devices without any problems or incidents I am confident I do not need the manufacturer warranty.
I can fix this too, but I don't have $200 to spend on the LCD...
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 12:12 PM   #14
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I can fix this too, but I don't have $200 to spend on the LCD...
It is insane they are charging 200 for that LCD, most of the ones you can find online are around 20-30 for phones and around 50 for tablets. Even Zeetron sells the iPad 3 LCD for 90 bucks and they tend to mark their stuff up by 20-30 bucks.
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 12:33 PM   #15
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It is insane they are charging 200 for that LCD, most of the ones you can find online are around 20-30 for phones and around 50 for tablets. Even Zeetron sells the iPad 3 LCD for 90 bucks and they tend to mark their stuff up by 20-30 bucks.
I know its a huge ripoff!
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Old Oct 18, 2012, 04:15 PM   #16
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HA HA not surprised. I had the same issue with the Samsung Behold 2 (Their first US Android phone). Had to send it back in because it wouldn't boot up and they tried to charge me claiming I damaged the phone. This is why I haven't bought a Samsung phone since.

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Old Oct 22, 2012, 10:35 PM   #17
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Still nothing from them. Ugh
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Old Oct 22, 2012, 11:20 PM   #18
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Good luck OP that sucks. Heard quite a few bad stories about their customer service over the past couple of years. Hopefully they improve that since they are becoming such a large vendor in the phone market.

Apple and Amazon and also Costco have had the best customer service from my experience. Extra props to Amazon they always rock for me.
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Old Oct 27, 2012, 12:50 AM   #19
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Got the phone back yesterday. They just sent me a refurb. Stuck pixel. I'm so done with this. Idk i think I'll just live with it
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Old Oct 27, 2012, 12:05 PM   #20
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Uh oh. You bought your phone brand new, and because of those small cracks, you ended up paying much for a refurb.
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Old Oct 27, 2012, 12:07 PM   #21
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Uh oh. You bought your phone brand new, and because of those small cracks, you ended up paying much for a refurb.
I actually don't mind refurbs. Everything externally was replaced, the screen, bezel, camera, flash, everything. So it looks and acts like a new phone.

I have never bought a new laptop, all of them have been refurbs
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Old Oct 27, 2012, 12:12 PM   #22
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Well, if it works perfectly then it should be fine. Have fun with the phone, bud.
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Old Oct 27, 2012, 12:39 PM   #23
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Got the phone back yesterday. They just sent me a refurb. Stuck pixel. I'm so done with this. Idk i think I'll just live with it
No, don't settle for less than perfect. Get on the phone and give em hell.
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