A most miserable customer service experience with my Macbook Air

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by mbike999, Nov 6, 2013.

  1. mbike999 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2013
    #1
    I just wanted to share what has been an abysmal customer service experience with Apple regarding my Macbook air. My Macbook (purchased in Jan 2013) was one of apparently a number of MBA's with a defective hard drive. The computer would not boot past the "?" folder screen. I brought the laptop into the Apple store last Saturday and dropped it off for repair, the "Genius" did a diagnostic scan, and sure enough the hard drive was toast.

    Turns out, said solid state hard drive is backordered with no delivery date. Being self employed, I called Apple's customer relations department, to try to devise some different solution. Having a working computer is business-critical for me, so this has been quite a struggle. In a nutshell, Apple said that they would not replace the computer, and furthermore, would not provide any estimate of when the repair would be completed. After 5 days, the backordered hard drive still does not even have a ship date from the supplier. So, a turnaround of multiple weeks seems all but likely. The "Genius" offered that I put a new, $1200 macbook air on my credit card and just return it before 14 days. Not possible for me, and it seems like a huge liability.

    Just curious if anyone has had a similar experience and how they handled/resolved it. It seems many people here are reporting problems with the failed Toshiba drives. So obviously I am not special, nor am I the only one with this hard drive problem. But, I think it is pretty extraordinary that a company would not even provide an estimated repair date, nor offer to replace a defective device within the warranty period for someone who relies on a computer daily for work. I think this situation definitely reminds me that Apple is not unlike any other huge, greedy corporation with a concern for nothing but profits.

    (Written from my Android Phone)
     
  2. kage207 macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 23, 2008
    #2
    You should talk to them on the phone. Sometimes they do offer temporary replacements. Though, I don't know much about it. I've only heard it being done once or twice.
     
  3. HarryWarden macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2012
    #3
    Yeah, I agree. Would Apple really like countless people buying and then returning new computers within 14 days? Doubt it. My experience with the failed SSD has soured me on the company.

    The customer service person I spoke to was nearly unintelligible and this is the guy that works at the local Apple store. How about hiring people with more than a 5th grade education? The guy mumbled and spoke in incomplete sentences. At least hire people that know how to talk when their job is going to involve speaking on the phone to a large volume of people.
     
  4. mbike999 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2013
    #4
    That's the thing, all of these conversations were on the phone. They always start with how understanding they are that people need some sort of turnaround for a repair, but end with a statement that they won't do anything for those of us stuck without a working laptop.

    Anyway, I didn't want to start a whinefest, but rather just alert future customers how Apple "is" or "can be" despite any preconceived notions. I know I had some.
     
  5. prism1212 macrumors newbie

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    Aug 29, 2013
    #5
    Did you ask to speak with the manager or the genius' boss?
     
  6. mbike999, Nov 6, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2013

    mbike999 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2013
    #6
    Yes. I approached all channels to try to get a resolution, including managers, Managers' managers, etc. Apple refuses to give any deliver by date for the repair or a any kind of replacement.

    Might as well wipe our behinds with the warranty, you know, the first page about replacing defective devices (sorry just need some levity after wasting hours on the phone)
     
  7. kage207 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2008
    #7
    Talk directly to a manager at the Apple store. Usually they are the ones that have the power / are willing to do this sort of thing, genius' do not. Don't tell them I said that though.
     
  8. mbike999 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2013
    #8
    The store manager directly refused to do any replacement.

    Reasoning: none.
     
  9. prism1212 macrumors newbie

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    Aug 29, 2013
    #9
    Did you ask them if they were in your shoes, would they take the risk and make a credit card transaction for a temporary MBA? In my opinion that was a stupid suggestion made by them.
     
  10. mbike999 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2013
    #10
    In the last five days I've talked calmly to 3 people in person and over 15 on the phone, they don't care about"my shoes", believe it or not they tried to sell me some other business class service plan like it's some sort of consolation. At some higher level Apple is just refusing to do right by the customer.
     
  11. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

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    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #11
    Buy a new MacBook and return it within 14 days.
     
  12. mbike999 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2013
    #12
    Read original post.
     
  13. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

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    Feb 15, 2009
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    Toronto, Canada
  14. Jedi Master macrumors regular

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    Apr 5, 2013
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    ar the moment on the Death Star
    #14
    We’ll even loan you a computer while yours is being repaired.

    http://www.apple.com/retail/business/


    Take your business further with a Joint Venture membership.
    Joint Venture is a program that delivers customized business support and training for you and your employees. Terms & Conditions



    Premium access to Apple Support.
    You’ll get your own website with easy access to every service we offer — custom training, Genius Bar reservations, tech support, and workshops. And you can speak by phone to an Apple Genius who can help resolve your issue, check into necessary parts, and estimate repair turnaround time. We’ll even loan you a computer while yours is being repaired. If you prefer to meet in person, you can make a Genius Bar appointment at any Apple Store in the world.

    Already a Joint Venture member? Sign in now
     
  15. dtjay7 macrumors regular

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    Jul 25, 2008
    Location:
    N. CA
    #15
    You could always install to an external drive and run off the external drive until the new drive is in. It is not a great solution but it would work. Kind of difficult to carry an external drive but at least you can use your computer. It is ridiculous that they can't fix it in a more reasonable time.
     
  16. MacPoulet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2012
    #16
    Joint Venture sounds like a decent investment for a small business, but that's something you'd have to evaluate on your own (and maybe with your accountant).

    OP, I know it's frustrating, but there is the very strong possibility that they can't give you a definite turn around time, and whatever date they give you would be wishful thinking. This seems to be a massive recall, and maybe it's worse than anticipated.

    Did you ask if you could book the computer in for service but hold onto it and bring it in when it's your turn? Would seem like a solution if they go for it.
     
  17. Jpeppard macrumors newbie

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    Aug 25, 2013
    #17
    I work retail PC support and I love playing devils advocate for the company because I am a bitter drone, the fact is the company offers a business class service contract that includes a loaner device for people who rely on their computer for their business. It sounds like you did not purchase that protection, or even a basic Applecare warranty.

    You would have a much stronger argument if you had purchased a service plan or had the part on order for a week or two. It doesn't make sense for them to replace units for a slight part delay, especially for a customer that chooses not to purchase a service contract.

    I don't see a reason for them to go above and beyond. You get a brand new Air, they don't get service revenue and maybe you buy another Mac in 2-4 years, also without a service plan.
     
  18. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #18
    On another thread it was mentioned that you can get a business account, which costs a reasonable amount of money and gets problems sorted a lot quicker. You get what you pay for. You paid for a consumer device. Same for internet access. Business internet access costs a lot more, and the only difference is what happens if something goes wrong.
     
  19. HarryWarden macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 27, 2012
    #19
    I did buy AppleCare and the service hasn't been any better for me. Apple products: Great as long as you don't have hardware problems. If you do, plan on waiting forever to get it fixed.
     
  20. RedRaven571 macrumors 65816

    RedRaven571

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    Mar 13, 2009
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #20
    I understand you want to play Devil's advocate but, really?! It shouldn't make any difference whether or not Applecare was purchased, the OP is within the original 12 months warranty for the product.

    Somewhere on these forums, there have been multiple mentions of an email address to Tim Cook; it seems that, frequently, a politely worded email gets results in these kinds of situations.
     
  21. mbike999 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2013
    #21
    j
    Finally, someone talking some sense. To the others: when I bought the computer I DID pay for a warranty - it's included in the price of the computer. Applecare only extends the service contract.

    It is not exorbitant to ask for at least an estimated repair date for a computer. This would be similar to if I brought my car in for service, and they told me some back ordered part had no ETA, and I was forced to pay for a rental car for some unknown period of time. I rely on a car daily, so again, every day I'm out it affects my livelihood.

    The purpose of a warranty is to resolve issues like this quickly, not drag them on for some unforeseen period of time, the fact that they are not pursuing the "replace defective device" option (first page of warranty), means they don't care about the customer's situation.

    If in fact said Venture warranty is that much better, it simply means that the standard warranty is terribly watered down and in this case, practically useless. That's the point I am trying to get across to people who may want to purchase a Macbook in the future and are considering Apple's service policy. Caveat emptor.
     
  22. rany81 macrumors newbie

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    Mar 29, 2012
    #22
    I imagine that for now the only replacement product they have is the same as the one previously installed, meaning with a high risk of failure.. they would want to wait until proper replacement parts are available.. no?
     
  23. mbike999 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2013
    #23
    That's a good point. Maybe we're outfitting our MBA's with new ticking time bombs.
     
  24. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

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    Nov 25, 2005
    #24
    We are not talking about AppleCare. We are talking about specific business support, which costs several hundred dollars per year. If you rely on products for running a business and don't make sure you get appropriate support, that's not Apple's problem. For example, if you run your business with consumer broadband access, and you lose access for a month, they will refund your fees for a month and not a penny more.
     
  25. cerberusss macrumors 6502a

    cerberusss

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    Aug 25, 2013
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #25
    I think you were wrong to expect some sort of warranty in this particular sense. Dell, for example, offers same- or next-business-day service.

    Apple doesn't offer something similar. I'm also running my own business, thus I always have spare cash to simply buy another laptop if my MBA for some reason needs to be repaired. I just don't have the time to wait for another. When it then gets back, I resell it.
     

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