Horrible experience with Apple Support just made me cancel my HomePod order

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by hk556, Jan 27, 2018.

  1. hk556 macrumors newbie

    hk556

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2017
    #1
    I just had the worst customer service experience I've ever had, and really disappointed it was with Apple. A seemingly small question cascaded into 4 1/2 hours of wasted time..

    My 2012 Retina MBP needs a new battery as it barely keeps a charge. Still a great machine so was ready to pay the $200 no problem. The only thing is I live 2 hours away from the nearest Apple store. I hoped to mail it in for repair as I've done in the past, so started chatting with support. Apparently the rMBP cannot be mailed in, must be taken to a store.

    Fair enough I thought.. an inconvenience but at least I have an excuse to go shopping. I wanted to confirm if the store was able to do the repair same day to save me time. Or, if they could have the part in stock first before making the trip. "No problem" the rep said, lets make the appt and you can call to get specifics, heres the store number..

    I call the store and try about 10 times to get past the automated voice prompt with the magic phrase to let me talk to a real employee. Nope.. routed to AppleCare with a 20 minute wait before I hang up and try chat again. They have someone call me about 15 minutes later.

    The person I spoke to was very friendly. I explain the situation and how I was in some sort of "infinite loop" (I don't think she got the joke lol). She attempts to contact the store to get an answer. I'm placed on hold for another 40 minutes at this point, as she has trouble getting ahold of anyone. Keeps coming back on every 10 minutes to apologize. Finally get the answer that "no.. it wouldn't be same day, most likely a few days".

    "Fine..", I said.. "So again no way I can just mail this in? Would hate to drive 4 hours to hand off an item". Said she understands so places me on hold again to see what she can do. 20 minutes later she asks if she could give me a call back.

    30 Minutes go by and I'm called back and routed over to a different person. Very nice guy that seemed at first like he was going to give me a solution. I'm met with long periods (2-3+ minutes) of silence, then eventually placed on hold. He says something is wrong with the system so will need to call me back.

    A third rep calls back later and finally tells me (after another period of holding).. that.. the battery isn't available. Will not be back in stock till late February. WTF... I'm too friendly so just say I'm upset and glad I didn't drive to the store, but instead just wasted that amount of time attempting to setup the repair. I got a weak apology and an offer for a free replacement battery in a month.. can't do anything else. I would also still need to drive to the store to drop it off..

    Just so upset over this situation. I understand mistakes happen but I don't know how I feel.. cancelled my HomePod order and would jump ship if I wasn't so invested in the Apple ecosystem already. I wanted to file a complaint but no way to do that either.. so posting here to vent I guess.

    TLDR: Apple stores don't have real phone numbers.. Apple support is broken.. rMBP repair is a journey I'm not sure I want to take again.
     
  2. Gav2k macrumors G3

    Gav2k

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    #2
    So your getting a free battery for a couple of hours of issues. I’d say you’ve been more than looked after.
     
  3. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #3
    That was your first mistake. The Apple store, like many modern retail stores are not geared to take calls, as their focus is on the customers who are on site. One of my pet peaves is being in a store and seeing a rep who was helping me, spend 10 minutes on the phone trying to explain/help a person. I made the effort to be in the store, please focus on my needs.

    This recently happened to me at a HomeDepot. I was being attended too, yet the sales person picked up the phone and dealt with another, who was basically shopping for flooring/carpeting on the phone. He or she) basically wasn't interested in going to the store but they wanted all sorts of details of various carpets, installation and scheduling the work. Where as I was just standing there, I almost walked out at that point, but they finally hung up.

    If you are two hours away, I think you erred on wanting to go to the apple store in the first place. You may have been better off in using the online help so your laptop can be sent in for a new battery.

    I also think you're making a mountiain out of a mole hill in that you were trying to reach the actual store and spending 4 hours seems kind of riducluous. if I tried 10 minutes and failed to get through, then I'd find a different option, heck, just jumping in the car and driving there would haven been quicker.

    Its your right to cancel homepod pre-order but if you think you're punishing apple by that cancellation, you're mistaken. I think they're going to sell quite a bit of them. If it wasn't out of spite but rather principle, then imo, you erred again because you were trying to do something that was outside of the scope of the apple store.
     
  4. Breezygirl macrumors 6502a

    Breezygirl

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2011
    #4
    Did he not say in his post that Apple already told he cannot mail it in for battery replacement?
     
  5. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #5
    No, I missed that - my bad.

    My point still remains, instead of fighting through the automated voice system and online support to try to call his local store for 4 hours, just bite the bullet and drive there.
     
  6. hk556 thread starter macrumors newbie

    hk556

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2017
    #6
    I understand where you are coming from, and would loved to have just popped in the store. Always had a great experience there, but I've since moved and the closest store (or 3rd party repair center) is now about 2 hours away. So I would have to drive 4 hours to get an answer. That's why before making the appointment I wanted to confirm the availability and time frame. Was told on chat that the spots go quick so let's pick a date/time (this Fri) and I can then call the store to ask any questions. Turns out though this information is wrong and had no way to get in contact with the store (instead a support rep had to relay info from the store employee).

    The thing that disappoints me the most is if I didn't request clarification I would have drove 4 hours to either hand the laptop in and wait 3-4 weeks, or be told it was out of stock and have to drive back again. I still don't understand why I can't mail the MBP in for repair. Might be something to do with the item being unavailable, but never got an answer and the last rep I spoke with said I would still have to call and make a genius appt end of February to get the repair..
     
  7. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2011
    Location:
    Australia, Perth
    #7
    You'd get replacement battery eventually.

    More options would be good though.
     
  8. Absrnd macrumors 6502a

    Absrnd

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2010
    Location:
    Flatland
    #8
    So you spent some time on the phone, and a delay on your now FREE battery replacement, and you didn't have to drive for 2 hours.

    Then you decided this caused you to cancel your HomePod order...

    maybe you should get over yourself, and realize you are not the only Apple user, and Apple don't have an assistant for every user, who is waiting, twiddling his or her thumbs, to wait for your call for help :)
     
  9. Morpheo macrumors 65816

    Morpheo

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2014
    Location:
    Paris/Montreal
    #9
    Looks to me that quite a few people at Apple went out of their way to help you. Yeah it took time and it didn't go as planned. **** happens... But you get a free battery! Doesn't sound too bad no?
     
  10. BayouTiger macrumors 6502

    BayouTiger

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    Location:
    New Orleans
    #10
    If that’s the worst customer service experience the OP encountered, they are certainly leading a charmed life! Try dealing with Dell for awhile!

    But then Apple retail stores have gotten way too crazy. Wondering if it was a weekend. I would never try to get them except during a week day. At least you can make an appointment, though in my area it could be two weeks to get in.

    Best to see if there is a third party authorized repair center around.
     
  11. Plett macrumors regular

    Plett

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2016
    #11
    I feel your pain. I also live even further from an Apple store. It is always funny to see threads " just go to the apple store" on your way home from work or whatever. These things aren't Starbucks (yet). The perceived ubiquity is just that perceived. For a company who has made a good deal of money based on the use of the Internet, and global logistics I am still amazed that one needs to arrive at one of their little stores to get service. Seems a bit backward to me.

    My last experience, my daughters MacBook Air trackpad not working, had apple care. Was going to a town for business that had an Apple store. I made an appointment via the "Internet" not in person, and arrived a few minutes early and the store was basically empty. There were 5 blue shirted folks standing around chatting. I stated that I had an appointment in 15 minutes. The smug little blue shirt looked at me and said, ok can't wait to see you in 15 minutes! If it wasn't for the absolute arrogance I have come to expect from this company I would have been shocked. so I sat outside and waited the 15 minutes. Came back in, some guy met up with me from the back room and was very friendly. Explained the problem, he took it to the back and 20 minutes later came out and said the trackpad was bad. No Sh#T. He then looked up the account and said it was covered under apple care, and to bring it back the next week. OMFG at this point I am amazed at the boundless hoops I am chasing, when a "phone call" could have cured this in short order. I did explain that I lived 350 miles away and would not be able to return next week. He to his credit offered to hold the machine, and mail it back. All worked out, just a silly way to go about it.

    I have been with Apple since the IIe and can tell you that the shenanigans that Microsoft and Dell, and Gateway tried to pull and us Apple people laughed, and laughed at the Giant monsters of those PC companies, oh how we were smug with our boutique computers and a fun little company. Now "APPLE" is the giant monster, and rest are sitting back watching, and waiting for the fall. Yeah I will probably stick around because I am too old to have really strong feelings about it, but others will and can do better, now is their chance.

    To the OP Sorry you don't live in the "right" location, another example of "you're doing it wrong". Maybe you should move near an apple store, after all isn't this your fault?
     
  12. Mr. Helpful McHelpsalot macrumors newbie

    Mr. Helpful McHelpsalot

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2018
    #12
    Support call management aside, this comes down to stock. They can't promise a battery or hold one for anyone because of already booked repair appointments and walk-ins. Period. In-store, phone answering employees aren't allowed to do it and call center folks can't either.
     
  13. Endorphine88 macrumors 6502

    Endorphine88

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2018
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #13
    So you wasted a few hours on the phone and they promised you a free battery for the inconvenience? How is that bad customer service?
    Your Macbook has a few years on it so obviously parts for it are not readily available. Also, stores are meant to handle in-person appointments and run smoothly by following a schedule. You realize what kind of a ******** it would be if employees in the store had to answer a phone line?
    Although I will admit that it is stupid they wouldn't let you mail it in. They probably had a logical explanation for that, but it still is stupid.
     
  14. PinkyMacGodess macrumors 601

    PinkyMacGodess

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2007
    Location:
    Midwest America.
    #14
    Dell horror stories... OMG! I tried to upgrade a client's server to hot swap. Seemed simple. Called Dell. Spent HOURS on the phone. Finally got to some 'parts guy' who rattled off a string of parts that I'd need. I asked about a kit to do the upgrade. Was on hold for quite a while, came back, Nope, no kit. Have to order the parts separate. Parts were eventually ordered. Parts start arriving at different days, from different locations. Feeling this is going sideways.

    FINALLY 'all' the parts arrive. I gut their old server, and start installing the hot swap parts. Get to near the end, and am missing a major part. Call Dell. On hold for hours, get bounced to a few other locations, only to get a very chipper person on the phone asking me why I had those parts. 'Because YOUR COMPANY SOLD THEM THAT WAY?' Oh, you got the 'parts', but not the 'kit' that has all those parts, PLUS the one part you need. 'So send us the 'kit' and we'll send you these parts that obviously won't work.' I can't do that. I'll have to order that one part you need and have it delivered. 'Say what? You can't take these parts back and send the 'kit'? What if there are more parts missing that I need that would be in the 'kit'? I'll have to call back and order them too?' Yes. You have the server almost completed. You can just wait for the missing parts to get there and finish that. So I said 'For their SERVER? They NEED their server running! That's the reason why people buy servers, so they can run their business off of them! I'm supposed to tell my client that they can't use their server for a while because Dell screwed up and didn't know how to upgrade their own server?' I can expedite that part, and have it there tomorrow. Oh, wait, it's too late, we missed the cutoff, it'll be there in two days. 'Can we just order the 'kit' and get this over with?' Sure, but we still can't take those parts back. 'Even though some incompetent sold us the parts, and not ALL of the parts? You can't make an exception? I just now installed them, and can return them.' If you want to buy the 'kit', you will have to pay for that all over again. However, we can take that back, if you decide you don't want it. 'What?!?! You will take that back, but not the separate parts? What sense does that make?' Dell sense? :mad::mad::mad::mad:
     
  15. Phil in ocala Suspended

    Phil in ocala

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2016
    #15
    &&&&&&&&&& WELL Said
     

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  16. MarkB786 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2016
    Location:
    Rocky Mountains, USA
    #16
    I'm betting you would not be happy it this was your experience. Don't be such a dismissive Apple fan. Being a blind Apple fan is no longer cool.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 13, 2018 ---
    So, if someone lives 6 hours from the nearest Apple store, they are SOL? Sounds like Apple CS is only good if you live near a retail store. Maybe the next CS survey needs to normalize results with distance from a genius bar.
     
  17. Endorphine88 macrumors 6502

    Endorphine88

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2018
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #17
    Can you please tell me what your idea of "great customer service" would be for this scenario? What were they supposed to do? Cause I'm not following what was so horrible about this experience besides the multiple calls and long holds.
     
  18. MarkB786 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2016
    Location:
    Rocky Mountains, USA
    #18
    I think you just answered your own question.
     
  19. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Location:
    Denmark
    #19
    Yet another 'OP is a complete spoiled brat' thread. Lovely.

    I fail how to see how Apple could have handled this otherwise, except of course shut down the local store just for OP, because clearly the world evolves around him/her.
     

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18 January 27, 2018