What ever happened to Apple's customer service?

Discussion in 'iPod touch' started by jbsengineer, Sep 21, 2008.

  1. jbsengineer macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    #1
    Let me start by saying I have been an Apple fan since I was a kid. My first Apple was the Performa 600. I've since poured money into Apple left and right. Apple TV's, Computers, iPods, etc etc. Always recommend the Apple to friends and family. I currently own a few different generations and models of iPod's, 2 G5 towers, an iBook, 2 Apple TV's, and a MacBook Pro.

    With that said I have never been disappointed with Apple's customer service... until today. I bought an iPod Touch 2G 32gb last week. Very happy with it. However it had a major problem. It would randomly power itself down. I could be watching a movie, playing a game, or listening to music. It would just shut down and I would have to power it back up and watch it boot back up. Sometimes I would go to use it and it would be powered down.

    Being an IT guy I did my own troubleshooting starting with restoring the iPod back to factory setting with the latest firmware. It still did randomly powered down without even have been synced with iTunes. Sometimes after it would power off it wouldn't even power back on until I hit the button a few times. I also tried loading the firmware from a different Mac. Same issue. Obviously there was something wrong with it and I wanted it to be replaced. So I went to my local Apple Store and was told since they can't replicate the issue I have 2 options... set up an appointment so a "Genius" tech and witness the issue or return it and pay the 10% restocking fee. After stating the troubleshooting steps I took to diagnose the issue this fellow still insisted it was a problem with software on my PC. Asking if I was using Windows or an older version of iTunes. I responded by telling him exactly what I did... tried two separated computers to restore the iPod to factory settings and without loading anything on the iPod the issue would still occur. He repeatedly insulted my intelliegence by making statements such as "Sir you realize there are no moving parts so this must be a software problem", "Are you sure you aren't powering it down?", and "We don't store the parts here so you'll need to wait for a replacement". After this humor filled conversation went on for 10 minutes I insisted to speak with a manager.

    I explained to the manager that I understood the policy but since this was such a random problem I don't have the time to stand around with a "Genius" and wait for it to occur. I just purchased the darn thing for $400 and I should have to take the time out of my schedule to wait for there "approval" of a problem???? He explained they could set up a time around my work schedule. I again insisted for a replacement. After this went on for another 10 minutes I was getting extremely frustrated. I started explaining how I've never had an issue like this with getting a simple product replacement a few days after a purchase with any company. I was very disheartened. I tried another angle...I have multiple Apple products and by pure customer service standards they should replace the iPod to make the customer happy. He then went into explaining they would have to order a replacement. I asked do you not have them in stock? He responded they do but this would be unique. Unique? You sold me a defective product!! Not to mention he asked me 5 or so times why I didn't call Applecare.

    Finally he agreed to replace it. However if they replaced it I would not be able to return it. It would lock managers out from doing so if I came back. I turned to my wife and she shook her head in agreement no. That was not acceptable. So by the chance this iPod is faulty I can't return it? I then asked if I could please return it without the restocking fee. He finally agreed and gave me my money back.

    What the hell???????????? What happened to there policy with iPods? I remember buying an iPod 5G 2 years ago and bringing it back 2 weeks later to get it replaced on the spot. I didn't have to show them the problem. Just replace the darn thing! I'm so frustrated....I bought apps and a case.

    I think I might purchase one of Amazon. At least there return policy is better.

    How disappointing........... Apple has definitely lost touch with there customers. I feel let down... I have brought so much business to Apple and to be treated like an idiot and thief is beyond words. :(
     
  2. iGary Guest

    iGary

    Joined:
    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    Randy's House
    #2
    They can't tell you you can't return it.

    You should have accepted the offer. There is no mechanism that "disallows" returns.

    You just had an average, everyday bad customer service experience.

    Would you divorce your wife over one argument?
     
  3. jbsengineer thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    #3

    They would allow me to return it... but insisted I pay $40. If your talking about after the replacement he went into an explanation of how it would lock the managers out of the replacement option since the iPod had already been replaced once.
     
  4. iGary Guest

    iGary

    Joined:
    May 26, 2004
    Location:
    Randy's House
    #4
    No, no ... what I am saying is that there is no internal logistic mechanism that "marks" your receipt as no return. The manager was feeding you a line of BS when he said "OK, I'll do it, but you can't return this one."

    Your frustration is understood. In those cases I just get my money back and do what you suggested - by it from a retailer with easier return policies.
     
  5. Lunchbox700 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    MN
    #5
    It sounds more like an idiot. I had to return my 1st gen and I didn't even get it from them (sidenote it was a faulty power button which is a moving part) and he swapped it out on the spot. Now I think what we are seeing is that there are a lot more stores now and it is getting harder to get people that are actually a "genius" then it used to be.
     
  6. OldCorpse macrumors 65816

    OldCorpse

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2005
    Location:
    compost heap
    #6
    You were dealing with an idiot and an incompetent - the "no moving parts so it must be a software issue" should have clued you in right there. It's unfortunate, but you'll get the occasional idiot among the "geniuses". Happens.

    That said, I always found Apple's return policies somewhat restrictive compared to other vendors. I don't want to have to deal with that BS. So, what do I do? Amazon, baby. Amazon. Super easy returns. I've done it. I've been an Amazon customer for 10 years now. Never had a problem, and more often than not, way, way better prices. Plus, I pay nothing in taxes (I'm in CA) and no shipping charges. Often, there are nifty discounts too. Way better deals than anything Apple can offer. Better deals and better service - what's not to like? Sound like a no-brainer. Besides, Apple will still have the warranty for your purchase even if you got it from Amazon, and you still can take it to the genius bar.

    Bottom line, unless you are buying BTO with options, there is no reason to buy from Apple - none.
     
  7. duncyboy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #7
    Be careful with any returns though, pal: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=552203

    ;)
     
  8. HLdan macrumors 603

    HLdan

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    #8
    I would recommend buying from Best Buy myself. Why buy it from Amazon? If you have a defective item then you have to ship it back. If you buy it from Best Buy you can exchange it on the fly and go back home.
     
  9. jbsengineer thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    #9
    Does Best Buy have a restocking fee? I'm pretty sure Circuit City has one with "mobile video" products.
     
  10. Beric macrumors 68020

    Beric

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2008
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #10
    An Apple Genius replaced my entire Macbook logic board for only the cost of the extended warranty, which I had wanted anyway. And it had been damaged because of my accident, which I told them. I could hardly have been happier. And through my experiences with them, they actually know a lot. :)
     
  11. jrok18 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    #11
    Dude after hearing the problem u had with apple i think i am going to return my and buy one at costco. The only thing is the stupid women didn't give me a receipt back (i returned a screen protector and that was on the ipod receipt as well) . So do u think ill have a problem when i just bought the thing last week?
     
  12. HLdan macrumors 603

    HLdan

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    #12
    Best Buy does have a 15% restocking fee but only if you were returning it for a refund. If you are exchanging it there's no restocking fee and BB is very good about exchanging it without hassle.
     
  13. jrok18 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    #13
    Never buy ipods from best buy. O and Do u think ill be able to return my apple protection care if i haven't opened yet?
     
  14. HLdan macrumors 603

    HLdan

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    #14
    I don't know exactly what you mean? I bought 2 Shuffles at BB and had issues with one of them. They exchanged it 4 times for me no questions asked. If you guys are talking about refunding your iPod purchase at BB then what's the point of buying it?
    Oh yes, forgot to add that I bought their extended warranty. Great service.
     
  15. iParis macrumors 68040

    iParis

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    New Mexico
    #15
    WHAT?!
    I usually buy my iPods from Best Buy.
    They have great customer service.
    I even liked their service so much that I wanted to extend it so I bought their iPod warranty.
     
  16. jbsengineer thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2005
    #16
    iParis,

    I remember a few years ago BB started sending iPod's back to Apple instead of replacing them onsite with there so called "service plans". Is this not that case now? If you have an issue with your iPod will they replace it on site?
     
  17. Heather1 macrumors regular

    Heather1

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Location:
    California
    #17
    Wow, after hearing that i don't wanna buy a touch at my local Apple retailer anymore. What is BB exchanging policy and how long is the warranty for electronic devices there ?!
     
  18. iParis macrumors 68040

    iParis

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    New Mexico
    #18
    Well within the first 15 days if you come in to exchange it they will change it out with a brand new one.
    If you have the service plan and come to return it after the 15 days they will give you the option of getting your current iPod fixed or sending you a refurbished one.
    I normally choose the refurbished option because in my opinion it's more reliable since all the parts have been tested.
    And yes, they do send it to Apple and they send you back the option you chose.

    I believe the service plan is 3 years.
    It might be 2 but most likely 3.
     
  19. jrok18 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    #19
    Well i had a ipod video that i got in 2006 and i had a 3 year warranty plus 1 .Anyways My ipod kept freezing, going dead quickly, wouldn't show album artwork so i took it to best buy to see if i could exchange or if they could check it out for me and they said they cant exchange apple products but they would check it out. A week later i got it back and still had the same problems. I wanted to bust BB window with a rock i was so mad. Ok next i had a crack ipod touch with freezing problems but they wouldn't check it out bc of the crack WTF. I had a 3 year warranty and i didn't care about the crack only the freezing problem but they were dicks and would check it out. They said they don't cover accidental accidents . So do i have to break it on purpose?
     
  20. Heather1 macrumors regular

    Heather1

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Location:
    California
    #20

    Thanks.

    Wow, 2 or 3 years ?! That's even better than Apple. That makes me wonder why ppl would buy them from Apple in the first place ?! :confused:

    And btw, i can use applecare or apple customer service if i buy one at best buy ?!!
     
  21. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2008
    Location:
    Chestnut Tree Cafe
    #21
    That is for the extended warranty which is what Apple offers also. You have to pay for it regardless if you buy the Best Buy or Apple one.

    I have had bad experiences with Best Buy and will never buy any big item from them again.
     
  22. Heather1 macrumors regular

    Heather1

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Location:
    California
    #22
    I just called BB up and they said that i'll have 3 year warranty if i buy an ipod touch there. That's great. I'm gonna forget about Apple now. See Apple just lost a customer for being bad to another customer.
     
  23. Heather1 macrumors regular

    Heather1

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Location:
    California
    #23

    Oh i'm sorry. Mind sharing your experience ?!
     
  24. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2008
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    Chestnut Tree Cafe
    #24
    That isn't true. You get 1 year free (manufacturers warranty) and have to pay for the additional years.
     
  25. hogfaninga macrumors 65816

    hogfaninga

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2008
    Location:
    Chestnut Tree Cafe
    #25
    You do realize Apple doesn't care where you buy it, right? They still get their money.
     

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