Buyer beware.

Discussion in 'iMac' started by platolives, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. platolives macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2008
    This is a precautionary tip to iMac purchasers, I think this was an auto service included with a the purchase of an iMac in Central America. The retailer or Apple never informed me of this hidden "feature". Buyer beware.
    This is in the form of a story which follows

    My recent purchase of an iMac was an event that I enjoyed. The high tech box it came in gave me the emotional rush that only a kid gets when he views his first bicycle under the Christmas tree. Fond memories like this are rare for a 72 year old post depression baby. The iMac installed itself on my newly acquired high speed connection and I was off and running. Everything went well until I opened an account with Apple, registered and gave up my “personal” info and placed an order for iWork . A few weeks later Apple ,without my permission, opened a mobilMe account for “ME” and charged my credit card with some sort of geeky* service. Essentially it was one of those“ if you do not notice this we will stick you for a hundred bucks” kinda thing, Ethically comparable to the type of tricky mortgages used by institutions that helped to* bring down the world economy.

    Promptly I went on line and entered the apple support pages which is like an endless maze that often doubles back on itself. The site is appears to be a tricky device used to avoid your talking to someone at Apple with a heartbeat. How many support geeks are there at Apple? I would guess that there is the minimum and allows Apple to break records in the cost effective arena. Essentially I think it was cleverly designed for a do it yourself geeky customer who does not have much to do and an infinity of patience. After attempting to find my phantom account for an hour I dug deeply into the bowels of Apple’s support site and found a* 1-800 number. A young man answered and informed me that I did not have a charge or an account that he could find. He also informed me that it was probably “pushing” or some such thing, that had informed me of this unknown phantom account and charge of mine. He suggested that I ignore it for this reason and that Apple folks just like me get a lot of those letters.*I took his advice but added at the end “If I am charged by Apple for this service will you guarantee a refund?” He replied “Of course you will get a refund sir”. The next time I* went on line and there was a charge on my bank account. The Phantom had found me and zapped me for over a hundred bucks. Again I returned to the “Apple’s support site, logged in, and again went to Mobile MeMe and could find no evidence of a charge or an account. Since I never opened or charged anything to this phantom account it was not a surprise.

    The choice was to dispute the charge from the Phantom, a process that shuts down your bank account for at least two weeks and requires a new card, etc , etc. I decided to go back to Apple and take a hard line. This is unpleasant and has the effect of forcing an innocent* victim to pay homage to the monarch or behead the first person who answers the phone at the so called Apple support 1-800 number. I chose the latter. The person who answered stood behind the well thought out barricade and said she could do nothing about the charge and suggested that I return to the Mobile MeMe site to cancel the account. I replied that she should find someone who could take care of this.

    She continued her defense of the barricades until I informed her that I would like to either speak to someone or get a permanent divorce from Apple until death do us part. Finally a supervisor answered and after 20 minutes, made a refund, hopefully she closed my mobile whatever account and I wished her a nice day.

    What Apple should consider is the following questions, How can you bundle a hidden auto account with a sneaky auto charge and sleep well at night? Why is your support system so complicated and looped that you often end up where you started without a viable solution? Why do you avoid contact with a customer who has proven that there is a problem after numerous telephone calls and visits to your support system sites? Does such a high tech company not communicate well within their own organization? Why are you passing out my private information without first informing me? I have experienced all the above. It is to be hoped this arrogant behavior will cease in the future but I will never have complete confidence in Apple. In my opinion you have a pathetic support systems, it is not designed for solving customers problems but for Apple’s bottom line. You have ruined my enjoyment of your product and my Christmas past. If it were not so costly I would take a hammer to my iMac.
  2. JLatte macrumors 6502

    Dec 2, 2005
    San Diego
    Somehow I'm having a really hard time believing that you read everything very carefully, and then Apple just magically billed you for a Mobile Me account. Are you sure that while signing up for an iTunes account or some other user name when setting up your computer you didn't authorize a 30 day free trial of Mobile Me? Because this would have charged you as they state very clearly on the sign up page. I would think that if this were really an issue, we would see a lot more threads about this popping up that Apple is inadvertently charging people left and right for Mobile Me accounts.
  3. himansk macrumors regular

    Oct 16, 2006
    During the installation process (or the first time you setup your computer) it asks you for your information and in one of the steps asks if you would like to sign up a 60 day trial of the mobileMe service. Now if you managed to accept this service, then they will bill you automatically after the trial ends, thats how it is with all trial services, you do have the option to cancel before the trial expires, something most of us do anyway.
  4. MorzillA macrumors 6502


    May 16, 2007
    Now this sounds confusing, you mentioned that you opened an account with Apple, and registered. But for what, Apple offers many things when you "open an account and register" Even if you are going to download music/videos from iTUNES even if it's free, or use any of their products yes, including Mail.

    Did you read what you where getting into?? WORD FOR WORD?!?

  5. dakdag macrumors newbie

    Feb 28, 2008
    not "pushing". I'm sure he said "phishing" and if you were actually charged by apple, I'm positive you signed up without paying attention.
  6. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Must have missed this completely, never bother with most any of the "free trial offers" if they have anything other than my snail mail billing info.
  7. andyblila macrumors 65816


    Jul 8, 2008
    On My iPhone, or my iPad?
  8. ntrigue macrumors 68040


    Jul 30, 2007
    I've installed/reformatted many computers with Mac OS and it has always been abundantly clear that after 30/60 days I would be charged annually for services after that time has passed.

    This is not a malicious attempt at your $99 but rather an Apple-esque convenience; many components of the Apple OS X experience are enhanced by MobileMe.
  9. mustang_dvs macrumors 6502a


    Feb 9, 2003
    Durham, NC
    Yeah, that "contact" link at the bottom of every single page is awfully hard to find. :rolleyes: lists every 1-800 number for Apple, Inc.

    I think you're simply embarrassed that you missed something, or made a mistake and want to place the blame elsewhere, as you're infallible, in your humble opinion.

    You signed up for Mobile Me -- whether by intention or not (you might have bought the service from the retailer, without realizing it) and Apple canceled the account and refunded your money -- I don't see why you're irrationally angry at them, nor the need for the melodramatic histrionics about ruining 71 Christmas' past -- disputing a charge on your credit card neither shuts down your bank account, nor does it require them to reissue your card.
  10. mastershakess macrumors 6502

    May 14, 2008
    Bel Air, MD
    Not Apple's fault you can't read. I know exactly what you did, you signed up for the free trial and never stopped it after the free period was over. Your fault sir!
  11. Acornz macrumors member

    Aug 9, 2008
  12. Macsleuth macrumors member

    Jan 25, 2008
    got a 7 day notice

    I just recieved a 7 day notice that my trial is ending, so i logged on and canceled my mobileme account.
    I guess I'll watch my card and se if a charge slips thru.

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