Apple Store experiences with watch issues?

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by vincenz, Sep 24, 2015.

  1. vincenz macrumors 601

    vincenz

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2008
    #1
    How have experiences been overall in Apple Stores regarding issues with the watch? I can't say I had a good one recently. It's been a couple years since I've stepped foot inside a store for an issue, and it seems a few things have changed since exec management turned over.

    I had to go to FOUR local locations last night after work before finally getting a sympathetic employee to schedule me for a walk-in. This was my first time ever being turned away for being a walk-in. I can understand if there is an issue if there are just too many bodies in the store, but at all of these locations, there was not an overflow of people, and as far as I know, Genius bar appointments are still 15 minutes long.

    That withstanding, my watch had a malfunctioning taptic engine, which could not be fixed on the spot. OK, that I understand, stuff happens. But they could not even give me a replacement on the spot, instead telling me that they have to send the watch in to be diagnosed and either repaired or replaced, and that it will probably be a week out. For a broken taptic engine, which only a replacement will be the solution for anyway, what does it mean to your bottom line to swap it out in store and send the broken watch back to diagnose on company time instead of putting the burden on the customer? I can understand if the watch is on backorder, but I am sure they had plenty in stock in the back.

    The genius's reason was that for new products like this, they need to send it back to the lab to diagnose and "make improvements for other products." This kind of service makes me feel more like a beta tester than a customer. I told this to the genius, to which he had no reply. I understand it is not his policy, but someone made the decision up top.

    What were the policies when other products were new? iPhone, iPad, etc? If someone had an issue that could not be fixed on the spot, did Apple send them out the door with nothing? I have a feeling these changes were brought on by the new retail chief. Apple is not a luxury store with uppity customers (it doesn't need to be)-- the retail stores should not be run like it is right now, and it's obvious what the changes are reflecting. Not offering watches for sale in store on launch day, turning away walk ins to avoid crowds in the stores, taking the bottom line over customer satisfaction. I suppose I miss when Jobs was around.
     
  2. Newtons Apple macrumors Pentium

    Newtons Apple

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    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #2
    Apple has a different policy with the watch and does not replace them on the spot, they are sent out for repair. If you have AC plus they will send you another watch overnight so that you can send yours in.

    They are not treating the watch the same as the iphone for warranty.
     
  3. vincenz thread starter macrumors 601

    vincenz

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    Oct 20, 2008
    #3
    Do you know what their exact reasons are for why these policies are in place? To the untrained eye, there is nothing that logically shows why the watch should be treated differently, especially if the solution is a replacement anyway, and especially if supplies are not in short order.

    With this policy in place currently, what they are essentially doing is like I said, treating their customers as beta testers and prioritizing their bottom line over satisfaction. Is that good practice?
     
  4. mattopotamus macrumors G5

    mattopotamus

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    Jun 12, 2012
    #4
    It probably has to do with all of the different models. Imagine if they had to carry a "white box" replacement in store for all the different variants they sell. Granted, they could just stock the casing, but that would make too much sense :)

    Also, you say supply has got up, but I still think they are launching or yet to launch in different countries b.c of supply.
     
  5. Talkingtoaster macrumors regular

    Talkingtoaster

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    Aug 19, 2014
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    Similiar experience for me with a peeling strap, loose button and a reaction to my wrist. Store was rude and unhelpful, told me the peeling and marking was due to sweat and I should wear it less when working out. Apple care took 90 mins and 4 none returned calls to offer me a replacement band. Joke of a company right now, never had these issues over 5 years of custom.
     
  6. vincenz thread starter macrumors 601

    vincenz

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    Oct 20, 2008
    #6
    I have not calculated the exact number of different models, but if they carried just the watch casing for replacements, I wouldn't think it would be more variations than when the iPhone was at its most complex with different models for different carriers, storage capacities, and color variations... In the U.S. at least, there are plenty of models available currently, no?

    If internal testing hasn't given enough results yet, either don't release the product yet, or if you do, be prepared to deal with issues swiftly to ensure customer satisfaction (which is one of the few things that got Apple to where they are now). Don't send your customer out the door with 2 watch straps. I feel like these details were not missed out from a few years ago, sadly.
     
  7. Newtons Apple macrumors Pentium

    Newtons Apple

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    #7
    Sorry but can not agree. Apple has always been the best for customer service and I have never had a problem with them. They simply made the choice with the Apple Watch to repair rather than replace if you do not have AC+.

    That does not mean that you are being treated like a beta tester. When you bought the watch you surely knew it was a brand new device and it could possibly have problems. I doubt this affects Apple's bottom line as they would have to get these broken watches up and running anyway.
     
  8. vincenz thread starter macrumors 601

    vincenz

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    Oct 20, 2008
    #8
    You are misreading what I wrote. I did not say it would affect their bottom line because of the malfunction. I said it would not affect their bottom line if they replaced it on the spot rather than send the watch to the labs and replace there and send it back to the store for the customer to pick up, and make the customer walk out without a watch.

    Of course I know it is a new device, and I for sure know that any device can have problems. I am a tech by trade also, so I understand. I have never purchased AC for any product I own, and I have never had issues dealing with warranty. I have had dozens of Apple products so I am no newbie.

    So if they are treating AC customers differently than non-AC customers now, that is just further proof of the company protecting their bottom line over customer service. Anything else you'd like to point out?
     
  9. Newtons Apple macrumors Pentium

    Newtons Apple

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    #9

    Only that you are wrong.
     
  10. vincenz thread starter macrumors 601

    vincenz

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    Oct 20, 2008
    #10
    And your post has absolutely no value without elaborating.
     
  11. neilly93 macrumors member

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    Feb 15, 2013
    #11
    I think it depends on the store. I had a problem with my SGS and had it replaced in store. I don't have AC.
     
  12. bulbousnub macrumors 6502

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    Sep 12, 2014
    #12
    I think this is about the first time I've heard of someone getting a swap on the spot. Was it new for new or was it a warranty replacement?
     
  13. Apollonian macrumors 6502a

    Apollonian

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    May 10, 2010
    #13
    When they are swapping with AC+ or without do they swap the watch face AND band or just watch face.
     
  14. Armen macrumors 604

    Armen

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    #14
    I have an appointment in 2 days with the Apple store for an issue with my Apple watch. I have AC+

    - I'm not expecting them to replace it in the store but if they do, great.
    - I'm expecting Apple to overnight me a replacement unit and let me ship mine back.
    - The senior rep at AC told me if the store gave me a hard time to call him directly.

    We'll see what happens.
     
  15. neilly93 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2013
    #15
    A replacement. The watch was only a few weeks old and was showing screen separation issues. Apple swapped it then and there for a new watch. I was a bit surprised myself.
     
  16. vincenz thread starter macrumors 601

    vincenz

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    Oct 20, 2008
    #16
    Let us know how it pans out. Any other people feel free to chime in. Doesn't make any sense that they have to do it this way right now. If anything, they should narrow it down by issue.

    If it's an obvious defect such as a malfunctioning Taptic Engine or screen separation or other issue, these should be replaced on the spot. Other issues that may be because of software can be diagnosed using other methods. I'm surprised this isn't more of an issue really. Either it's a very small minority of people experiencing issues or people just don't care about their watch the way they do their iPhones or iPads.

    Just because it's an accessory to the iPhone doesn't mean that customer service for it should be treated that way too. They tout it as the most personal device they make but they treat servicing for it like it's a computer monitor.
     
  17. vincenz thread starter macrumors 601

    vincenz

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    Oct 20, 2008
    #17
    How did the appointment go?

    I got an email/call that my watch was ready for pickup last night. Four days, not a terrible response time, I suppose. I went to pick it up-- it ended up being my original watch, which I was surprised at. Set it up after I got home and it seemed like it was working fine, but this morning as I was using it, I started noticing degradation with the haptic feedback. Testing it more yielded that the taptic engine now needs 2-3 "cycles" before it gets to full strength. So unless I am getting a constant stream of notifications, I start missing notifications because it is either too weak or I get nothing at all.

    Disappointing. Looking at my pickup confirmation email from last night, under the description, it says: "Returned to customer - no service provided"

    Wow.

    Contacted Apple online chat and told them my experience and my frustration and I'm now getting an express replacement with hold on credit card. Hopefully this all gets resolved soon. They were having QC/supply issues with the taptic engine while it was being produced, no? May this help others-- if you are having issues with your haptic, press them to make a replacement.
     
  18. Armen macrumors 604

    Armen

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    #18
    I'll keep it short. Genius looked at it for 30 min and agreed to send it out for repairs. He handed me my sport band and sent me on my way with no instructions other than it takes 3-5 days. So, I'm not happy at all honestly. I haven't had my watch since Saturday.

    On the flip side I keep thinking my Omega has taptic feedback and keep looking at my wrist.
     
  19. lagwagon Suspended

    lagwagon

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    Oct 12, 2014
    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta, Canada
    #19
    I don't think it's as simple as just carrying the casings for replacements. I believe the serial numbers are also tied to what band combo was with it. So they would still have to carry multiple casings so they had every available combo.
     
  20. fox1401 macrumors regular

    fox1401

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    Sep 8, 2015
    #20
    Last week I tried to report the rear logo damage which is likely to be a defect in some Sport Black AW and see what they'll do at the Genius Bar. With a quick glance at the symptom they told me similar cases happen but there is nothing they could do because it affects only the appearance. They even told me that making an official report won't make any difference and suggested me making a feedback at the Apple website. I didn't have time to argue with them so I just left disappointed.
     
  21. eastamherstbias macrumors 6502

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    Mar 18, 2012
    #21
    My heart rate is malfunctioning. The genius admitted it was faulty but would not swap it out. He said it would have to sent in. They said they did not expect apple to get in swappable replacements any time soon. They were sending them all in for repair and it would take 5-7 days. I still have not sent it in because of the delay.
     
  22. Gav2k macrumors G3

    Gav2k

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    Jul 24, 2009
    #22
    Nothing to do with the store you were just outside the 14 days wind which means the manager can do an override to give you a new device. I've had this happen with my iPhone before (was on day 20). There is a point where it can't be overridden and then normal service procedures kick in resulting in the watch being sent off.
     
  23. prezasti macrumors 6502

    prezasti

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    Jul 9, 2010
    #23
    I found out this morning that if you purchased your watch from anyone other than apple, the standard procedure kicks in for warranty, no matter what the purchase date is. I only had my watch for 12 days and since I purchased at a Best Buy, Apple could only send it out and not do an in store replacement. I didn't know this was the case last night, I just assumed it was standard procedure, otherwise I would've taken the watch back to Best Buy.
     
  24. JayLenochiniMac macrumors G5

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    Nov 7, 2007
    Location:
    New Sanfrakota
    #24
    Except this isn't the case as the white box replacements are watch body only. They do not replace the band unless it's defective, just like iPhone accessories. Previously there would be only four different bodies (silver sport, space gray sport, SS, space black SS). Now we have a bit more variants, but still not as many as iPhone white box replacements.

    Nope. They replace just the body. Anyone swapping out a watch won't get a replacement band unless it's also defective.
     
  25. JT2002TJ macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2013
    #25
    I went in for my appointment for a defective coating (there was a small circle where the coating was missing). They took my watch, handed me the band (they were nice) and told me they would send it out for repairs. They stated that it would take 7-10 days, and may be earlier because it seems Apple is simply replacing them. In the end I was without a watch for 16 days. When they gave me a new one, it was in a white box (new), with no band. I have Apple Care+ on the watch (SS with black sport band).

    If they had simply boxed the watches separately from the bands, I would have been able to get a replacement in store once they determined it needed to be replaced. But this business of sitting around and waiting is VERY annoying. I was not very happy, and there was nothing I could do but sit and wait.

    EDIT: I have a SS with black sport band with AppleCare + that I got on launch day (US).
     

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