iPhone SE iPhone SE display loosened, different behavior from support

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by bfreek, May 16, 2017.

  1. bfreek, May 16, 2017
    Last edited: May 16, 2017

    bfreek macrumors member

    Sep 11, 2015
    bought an iphone in april 2016. quickly after using it the first couple of weeks i recognized when swiping from the edges i can feel the edge of the actual display glass on the left and the plastic display frame on the right.

    so the display was not completely fit into the casing. i didn't bother too much with it since everything worked and i put on a screen protector foil anyway.

    fast forward a few month. one morning i picked up the phone, touched the display on the left side and felt and heard it making a creaking sound. it also moves down a little when pressed.

    now, 3 weeks back, around april 24th 2017 (still within one-year warrenty) i sent it in for repair, removing the screen protector as instructed.

    phone comes back with "cannot reproduce" and a light scratch on the screen. then i went to the genius bar and explained the issue to the genius.
    the genius was like "oh yes. i can see that. display loosens. will replace the display under warranty.".

    next day i received an email saying "phone has been repaired. ready to picked up." and i went to pick it up.
    another genius gets to me and goes "here's your phone, we have to replace the entire phone for 299€".
    i tell him that they wanted to replace the screen for free and he's like "yeah, that won't work because the phone's case is deformed.".

    i protest, he talks to his senior, 3 geniuses are now looking at my phone - no bending visible, no dents, no scratches - for 10 minutes and discuss. genius comes back with "we see you handle your phone very carefully, we will replace the device for 149€. decide _now_, other customers are waiting."

    i decline. take my phone home and contact support via twitter. they set up a call with a senior advisor.
    on the phone the "senior advisor" tells me "sounds weird that the folks did not find the issue when you sent it in but i cannot help you because i'm doing software support.".

    i feel like i'm being fooled, pushed around, like every other person at apple support is not qualified enough even if you send in the phone. my iphone SE really is in perfect condition other than the scratch on the display since i sent it in for repair -- i didn't even get around mentioning that to the geniuses.

    what am i to do now?
  2. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Unless your phone shows signs of impact or bending the should fix the screen of GIVE you another SE.

    You problem is that you are not in the USA and from what I have read, Apple stores treat these cases differently than here.

    You do not have much more to do except to go back to the store and try to get to the manager.
  3. bfreek thread starter macrumors member

    Sep 11, 2015
    no, there's nothing on that device. not a dent.

    since then i spend almost everyday looking along the edges, one eye squeezed closed, phone in front of my nose trying to detect any form of deformation. but there isn't any. at least none i can visually discern.

    they didn't even try to show me where there's a deformation.

    this is really pissing me off.
  4. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    I do not blame you for being upset but when you calm down take it back to the store and try again. If that does not work you will have to escalate your case directly with Apple and being in another country your results will vary.
  5. bfreek thread starter macrumors member

    Sep 11, 2015
    how does one do that? is there a form to fill out somewhere?
  6. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Being outside of the US, I do not know. But I would start looking in Google under Apple Corporate in your country or region.
  7. bfreek, May 28, 2017
    Last edited: May 28, 2017

    bfreek thread starter macrumors member

    Sep 11, 2015
    so i went back to the genius bar and burned through 3 geniuses. it's quite a story. let me paraphrase:

    genius took me to an empty table and listened -- quite bored as i progressed -- to the service story until this point in time. she then held the back of my iphone up to the edge of her ipad and said "see that little gap? your phone's actually bend.". after i complained that that's not very scientific evidence she put it on the wooden table, tapped on two opposing corners of the phone and goes "see, it wobbles. it's bend.". again, i said that's not quite scientific, it's a wooden table after all. she goes "oh, these table are very level as are ipad edges.".

    after discussing and complaining she says there's nothing she can do except recommending i take the 150€ device replacement offer. i then requested to talk to a manager and off she went.

    manager arrived, was very patient but basically tried the same wobble-trick on the table and told me "nothing to do".

    i then asked/insisted they prove to me, in a more scientific way, that that phone is bend. he then got me the "chief technician".

    the chief technician then did the same wobble test, looked at the phone very closely, got very confused, raised his eyebrows and said "what the heck, there's nothing bend on this phone. this design is very stable, even slightly more stable than the 6-ish design.".

    he then made the wobble-table-test on different spots on the table to show that the phone wobbles differently on different spots on the table. he then said "who told you it was bend? i gotta talk to them. we need to get them some training.".

    further inspecting the phone, he goes "yes, the display moves and makes a creaking sound. i can hear that. but there's nothing bend. that's ********. and that scratch on the screen after send-in-repair is just bad." and offers me either a display replacement or a full device replacement -- free of charge under warranty. i even asked him what he'd recommend and he goes "well, we can try a display first. i'll do that personally tomorrow or we just switch the device and you're off to go. but new devices -- although going through QA like any other apple device -- may carry the danger of other issues. here have a look at this replacement and let me know."

    i then opted for the phone replacement since i was going to be away for a week.
    putting the replacement into his ipad and scrolling through my support history, he goes "oh dear, you've really had some bad service..."

    after all that i even had another discussion with him about macbooks, in-store tv sets and we even discussed an issue of another customer at the table. this is what the genius bar should be like. friendly. warm. solving issues.

    so, after burning through send-in-repair, twitter support, phone support and 6 (!) geniuses at the genius bar i have a new (aka refurbished) iphone se. unfortunately the home button feels a little mushy, less clicky but everything works.

    all of this felt like typical german support. just bumping customers off until things get hairy. extracting even more money from them. it feels like the store manager applies german support tactics to fight off cases and increase revenue to impress cupertino. looks like there's first, second and third level support even at the genius bar while first and second level are instructed to squeeze customers. if they say the magic words "talk to the manager" once too often they finally turn around and claim "sorry for the bad service. here's some chocolate. recommend us. thank you.".

    even though this ordeal turned out in my favor, the entire time i felt horrible. first, because i felt i was being cheated by apple, and second, because i had to fight with employees at the store. i hope i'll never have to go through this again. i expect better from apple. from apple germany.
  8. myrtlebee macrumors 68020


    Jul 9, 2011
    Sorry you went through this, but glad it worked out in the end. That said, I can assure you that this is not just a German thing. The quality of support I've received from Apple has varied through the years depending on who is helping me. I even sent an iPod Touch in years ago for an issue, and they sent it back saying they could not replicate the issue, and with multiple scratches all over the device that were not there when I sent it in. Exact same experience as you.

    But also, to be fair, a number of years ago I called Apple about a pair of Apple earbuds that were falling apart - and even though they were not under warranty, the guy on the phone said no problem - and overnighted me a new pair free of charge. Also had a problem with a MacBook before and the lady let me pick any laptop carrying bag I wanted from the Apple online store as an apology! Keep in mind, this was at least 7 years ago, and have not had anything like that happen recently. I doubt they're even allowed to do that anymore.

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7 May 16, 2017