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Annual Customer Support Rankings

michael posted more than 10 years ago | from the tier-2 dept.

Businesses 332

An anonymous reader writes "Yahoo's Tech Tuesday is running PC Mag's annual survey of best and worst PC vendors' customer support. At the top of the list: Apple. At the bottom: Sony. Heard any good tech support horror stories lately?"

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Horror Stories? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815250)

I've seen something recently about a really bad web designer who came up with a vomit-inducing color scheme for the IT section of a popular website. Sorry I can't remember the name, and I don't have a link handy...

Re:Horror Stories? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815270)

aww, you wasted your FP troll opportunity

Re:Horror Stories? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815290)

Well, only technically, as I'm sure to be modded as Troll or Flamebait... The truth hurts as the say!

Re:Horror Stories? (1)

Unnngh! (731758) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815455)

You know, I actually have a real question about this (and I kindof like the color). What constitutes IT on slashdot? Half the articles at least are about IT. Yet, apple has its own section. BSD has its own section, as does Linux, etc. Some of these articles are now being classified as IT, others are still in their respective classifications. What's the point of the new IT section?!

Frist post! (-1, Offtopic)

hartba (715804) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815257)

Frist post!!

Best, but not perfect, obviously (4, Interesting)

ack154 (591432) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815263)

Apple is at the top, but not perfect.

When the hard drive in my iBook died, I had to send it back to Apple (no problem there). As the documentation requested, I included my power adapter and the cord for it with the laptop back.


When my laptop was returned, not only did I not get my same power cord back, but the two pieces (the brick and the cord) we incompatible... Not only that, but I still had the small plug to go directly into the wall (I forget what they referred to it as), and that wasn't compatible with the brick piece either. WTF?

So I had to call them back up and have them send me a power cord and the small plug piece. They were quick and fairly understanding about it, but I'm yet to figure out why it would have been so hard to just send the same cord/brick piece back with it that I sent in...

But the laptop itself was repaired without issue and in a timely manner, it was just a minor inconvenience of not being able to plug in my laptop to charge it... :/

happened to me 15 years ago (2, Informative)

fullmetal55 (698310) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815306)

sent in my Texas Instruments Travelmate 2000 (286-12 1 mb ram 20 meg hdd) for an LCD replacement, came back with a power adapter for a travelmate 3000, completely incompatable with the laptop...

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (2, Insightful)

Dr. Evil (3501) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815374)

So you're saying that they made a mistake, you raised the issue, and they corrected it.

The horror :-)

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (1)

ack154 (591432) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815486)

Well, yes, they corrected it and all is well. That's the good part. But I just feel that it was a mistake that could have easily been avoided - so it became an issue. I'm still completely satisfied with Apple though. Just pointing out one fault.

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (1)

superpulpsicle (533373) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815559)

Apple should be at the top every year. When majority of the hardware and software are built and QA by the same company. These is no excuse for poor quality products. Thus, leading to less people calling for support anyways.

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815423)

Just goes to show, there's an idiot for every iVillage.

.................[Tap, tap, tap] Is this thing on?

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (5, Informative)

grommitfry (724492) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815453)

Apple's Phone support for consumer products is OK. They have their scripts they have to follow and having supported 150 laptops in a corp. environment I had to wrestle with them on more than one occasion trying to convince the schmo on the other end that I could NOT click on the such-and-such because my LCD really WAS dead. . . That said, their Xserve support is outstanding. I have owned 2 Xserves and an Xserve RAID and have gotten more than my money's worth with the AppleCare contracts from those high-end boxes. The techs TRUST you have done your due dilligence, that you are not a moron and know what they are talking about. They are not outsourced script-reading tech-support-monkeys and am I truly indebted to them for assistance on several occasions. It's nice to have "peers" answer the calls who know and use your same products, who understand you have a SERVER which can't just be restarted randomly in the middle of the day willy-nilly and actually resolve your issues post-haste. Thanks Apple.

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (3, Interesting)

MadBiologist (657155) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815460)

My iBook had a problem with the battery (it would just refuse to charge at all.. not good for a laptop). I took it to the Apple Store, they promised that it'd be back in 5 day [Sunday] to [Friday].

I got my computer back in 31 days... not good.

I had installed 512 Mb Ram into it... it wasn't in there anymore, whoops. The first stick they sent me didn't work... whoops. Then the second one worked finally. The day after I got that one, I got a third stick in the mail.

God bless Apple, but I hope they can do it a bit faster next time.

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (1)

crackshoe (751995) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815604)

oddly enough, i've never had a problem with apple's laptop service. i've had to send in white dual usb ibooks (there are 3 in my family) 5 or six times for sundry repairs (backlight failure, mainboard problems, blah blah blah). its nevre taken more than 4 days to get back, from dropping it at the apple store to having it either delivered to me or arrive at the apple store. best time was3 days.

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (1)

Valar (167606) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815621)

31 days-- ick.

I used to work at a place that was also an apple certified service center. We shipped in all our hardware problems (it was a university thing w/ student labor, so there were liability issues with hardware repairs). Typically, we got machines back in 2-3 days and only had one or two major issues in the year I was there (even though we shipped them an unusually high number of laptops due to the fact that most of the iBooks we worked on came from the run with the logic board defect [and that they were deployed to education majors]).

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (2, Informative)

jcostantino (585892) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815555)

Apple power adaptors have been less than reliable due to design flaws. What model iBook (white or colored) and what model power adaptor (brick or yo-yo) was it? The yo-yo style was prone to fray at the base and the other end at the power connector. The brick was also prone to failure at each end.

If you had a "duck head" (that's what they call it, no joke) you probably had a white brick. They upgraded the older 45w bricks to 65w - mostly for the 17" Powerbook's additional draw, the power connectors should still fit without a problem. The only obvious difference between 45 and 65 watt units is the switch from a plastic post to a metal post where the power plug goes.

By the way, Apple's power adaptors suck :) Buy a nice aftermarket one for $70 when your warranty expires instead of their failure prone garbage for $130ish.

Apple's Depot repair service seems to only hire idiot jackasses to do the repairs. I've gotten back some things worse than when they were sent in! The turnaround time is usually excellent but you have to do some hand-holding to make sure they get it right. They usually forget to replace PRAM batteries on older units when it's obvious they have failed.

Re:Best, but not perfect, obviously (0, Offtopic)

aldoman (670791) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815571)

It so happened that I had to buy a birthday present for somebody and also buy some new headphones today, so I had three good reasons to go to CompUSA, and I was a tad surprised that there didn't seem to be anybody in the whole store that knew what Panther was. There was one iMac (or was it an eMac? Still confused about that) that had it installed for demo purposes, and demo I did. I'll squeeze in a mini-review of what I saw so far.

Overall, I was a little surprised at how similar to Jaguar it felt... this is a good thing. We want improvements, but let's not throw the baby out with the bathwater. Speaking of bathwater, the Finder has been replaced and I'm sure the new one is awesome. It was noticeably different but I didn't see a whole lot of Gee Whiz stuff in my quick (about 30 minutes) runthrough. I probably spent about 10 of those minutes playing with the much-heralded Expos, which honestly is DAMN COOL. I only hope it runs that quickly on my 550 PowerBook... probably not, though. I also tested the quick user switching thing. I had to figure out the CompUSA password, but it only took me about three guesses. That's another great feature.

The nicest surprise is that alt-tab (yeah, yeah, command-tab on Mac) application switching has really matured. It's much, MUCH more like Windows now... with a transparent bar that appears center-screen and true stack-based app switching (to make it just as easy to go two applications back as it is to go one application back). As a former Windows keystroke nut, I absolutely had to have my alt-tab support, and I about lost my mind when I first switched to OS X and had to deal with the various incarnations of that, including some shareware that did what I wanted and was subsequently irreparably broken by Jaguar, at which point I got used to Jaguar's better-but-not-quite-there implementation. That was when they almost lost me as a customer, but I just love OS X too damn much.

I'm glad to see they've burst forth with this great upgrade. I obviously wish it wasn't so expensive, but hey, it could be worse... it could be like $400 :) Highlly recommended, even though I didn't buy it quite yet. Soon, very soon. Especially now that I've touched it... I realize that I really like it but it's not so earth-shattering that I simply must have it. I'm sure many applications will soon be Panther-only (that's what happened with Jaguar), so I'll have to upgrade within the next few months. I hope to be able to do so with a good fiscal conscience within a couple of weeks.

Sorry it's so long... hope it was sort of interesting.

Best Support (3, Funny)

darth_MALL (657218) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815266)

Me :) Really! Ask my boss!

Re:Best Support (2, Funny)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815436)

"Me :) Really! Ask my boss!"

Don't expect a lot of questions. I don't think any of us want to know the details of the services you provide for him.

PostBlock devise user ?support? blows chunks (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815272)

a national disgrace?

BearingPoint,, etc..., now those, are scarIE things to be forced to tout.

failure to steal .com triggers nazIE frenzIE? (Score:mynuts won, we've already bought shares?)
by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 26, @10:28AM (#9801214)
the last bullast?

scurvIE bastards. what are they doing tryng to steal a (froogles) from some disabled guy, if they've got buckets of billyonerrors' gangster hostage monIE, to be fair about it?

stallman worth more than corepirate nazIE rag? (Score:mynuts won, our other sponsor too?)
by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 25, @06:38PM (#9796682)
as a matter of fact, just what he's forgotten, is likely more relevant to communications/commerce, than everybodIE in the kingdumb of payper liesense/stock markup FraUD softwar gangster felon execrable, .combined?

so, whois ready for the gnu millennium?

never mind robbIE's fauxking PostBlock censorship devise, it's still under development?

consult with trust in yOUR creators.... peaced off (& acting on it) by having their population/planet's security/future, squandered by a handful of megalomaniacal corepirate nazi felon execrable. see you there?

Stupid? How about this one. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815273)

Posted anon, as its not my story.


I'm so glad this happened to me because I wouldn't have believed it otherwise...

This normal-looking 20-something couple came in tonight and stood at the dropbox just clutching their three movies and staring at me until I asked if I could help them. They then proceeded to tell me that the dvd copy of 'Office Space' they had rented from us had downloaded a virus onto their brand-new dvd player and ruined it. (Anyone who has seen the 'Office Space' dvd knows why this is hilarious--for those of you who haven't seen it, after the FBI warning a Window...a MICROSOFT-LOOKING WINDOW...pops up and says a virus had been detected and, when you hit menu or start, your TELEVISION (i.e. Not Monitor) screen is flooded with pop up windows. After a few seconds you are taken to the dvd's start menu and presented with the usual options.) Even though they looked deadly serious, I thought they were joking and I said as much. The man got a little testy, so I explained to him that it's all a joke and simply part of the movie. They both swore up and down that it wasn't part of the movie and that this virus had destroyed their 2 month old dvd player and, even after I popped out the dvd trailer and put 'Office Space' in and showed them and actually started the movie with no trouble at guessed it: they STILL did not believe me.

I don't think I've ever laughed so hard in my entire life. uc k/6701337.html

Re:Stupid? How about this one. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815540)

Hey! That was me! And you may laugh, but it's not so funny when you're DVD player queries Google 10,000 times a minute.

Still making the rounds (1)

LookSharp (3864) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815276)

ThinkGeek is running a contest and taking nominations for some sort of biggest geek gets a prize or something. A summer intern is working with one of my co-workers who does end-user support. She told him the classic "user thinks CD-Rom drive tray is a cupholder" from the first person, and now he thinks she's a goddess. He submitted her name. (I snickered to myself. :)

Offtopic: When I hit "Read More" on this article initially, I got "Nothing to see here, move along!" Have never seen that or heard of it before. Can anyone tell me what's up? :)

Re:Still making the rounds (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815350)

Offtopic: When I hit "Read More" on this article initially, I got "Nothing to see here, move along!" Have never seen that or heard of it before. Can anyone tell me what's up? :)

The "Nothing to see here, move along!" usually appears if the editors post an article and then take it down before the /. public sees it. This happens a lot if subscribers e-mail with story problems, such as headline spelling, dupes, etc...

Re:Still making the rounds (0)

evn (686927) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815362)

FINALLY! They're enforcing the slashdot policy of not reading the articles before spouting off!

I was getting really tired of these holier-than-thou types messing up my daily dose of
  1. in soviet russia
  2. beowolf clusters of ???
  3. profit
    1. And yeah, I saw that too.

Nothing to see here (1)

andyrut (300890) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815527)

When I hit "Read More" on this article initially, I got "Nothing to see here, move along!"...Can anyone tell me what's up?

It's like a 404 Not Found for an article. It means the story (look at the URL's SID and TID) doesn't exist anymore.

I've seen it about three or four times on articles still in the queue that are viewable to subscribers only. Sometimes, the article is removed before it goes live, in which case you'll get the "Nothing to see here" message when you try to refresh it. Somewhat annoying to see a good article disappear before your very eyes.

Like here's [] a made-up URL which gives you that error.

Dell is by far the worst... (4, Informative)

truz24 (800762) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815292)

Being on the phone with Dell tech support is by far the worst experience ever. They don't have a clue, and it sounds as if they are reading off solutions to a list of problems that sound like the one you might be having. Hopefully they move the damn thing out of India.

Re:Dell is by far the worst... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815330)

Props to the parent. I have never met a Dell customer who was satisfied with their support. They are so good at reneging on a contract they should go into insurance sales. Incidentally, my dad just killed his Dell with a glass of wine. They wouldn't uphold thier support contract, so he got a sweet Toshiba P20 widescreen laptop. Thier warranty specifically covers against spill damage, and they actually live up to it :)

Re:Dell is by far the worst... (2, Informative)

ir8monkey (646592) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815334)

I dunno, dvdrom died in my inspiron 1100, I had a new one at my door within 48 hours, no complaints there, provided packing slip to send the old one back and everything. happy as a clam :P

Re:Dell is by far the worst... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815352)

I've only had excellent experiences with Dell technical support. I purchased my notebook from them online and ended up having to move before it was scheduled to arrive. I called Dell and asked if I could pay to upgrade my shipping and they upgraded it to next day shipping for free. No complaints from me.

Re:Dell is by far the worst... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815384)

This isn't an India outsourcing thing, lots of companies tell their tech support to go by the solutions card.
The reason, so to most people you sound like you are following a structured and logical approach. Alot of tech support by knowledge, tends to bounce around alot. Check one area, check a different area. Even though it makes more sense, it makes the unknowledgable end user think you're just grasping.

Re:Dell is by far the worst... (2, Interesting)

russler (749464) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815385)

I tried Dell online chat support this week for the first (and last) time.

I reported that my computer continuously reboots, and never lets me in to the operating system. Their response was "Are you contacting me from the affected computer?" Ummmm, no.... or I would not have a problem.

Most of the information I found in their knowledge base advised me to "Right click on My Computer.... blah blah blah" which is probably much easier to do if the machine will ever actually finishing booting up.

Finally, I tell them that I have a mega-warranty, and I want someone to come out and get the laptop working. No dice. They tell me they only send someone out if I can prove it is something I cannot fix myself. And, because I have not completed the knowledge base steps, I am not going to get help.

I'm obviously not giving up at this point, but this has been my experience with their "service" to this point.

Re:Dell is by far the worst... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815438)

I don't think it's the fact that their tech support is in India that makes it bad. I've had plenty of good experiences with tech support of other companies that I know for sure is in India.

I think the real problem is that Dell doesn't really care about their small customers (individuals and small business) since they have such a steady client stream and therefore don't spend much money in supporting them.

For example, the small business I work at ordered a Dell a month before they were going to need it. The day before it was scheduled to ship, it was delayed by two weeks. After two weeks, nothing had changed on the status page, so we called them, and they said to wait another few days. After 3 or 4 days we called again and they said it had been delayed indefinately. We canceled at that point because after 7 weeks, they still could not give us a date on when it would ship, and on top of that they didn't seem to care.

I will say that when it comes to honoring the warranty, Dell is pretty good. If you can convince them that the part has gone bad, they will usually have a replacement at your door within two days...

Re:Dell is by far the worst... (1)

Kenja (541830) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815503)

Huh, when one of my Dell servers breaks there is a tech on site to fix it in under 12 hours. Thats pretty good support in my book.

No kidding - Horror story (4, Informative)

totoanihilation (782326) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815516)

My dad, who has a full service contract on his latitude D800 laptop (i.e. they come to his workplace to fix it) was asked to take his laptop apart and pull the modem adapter out, and try to place it back in when it would fail to connect. When he told them he didn't have the screwdriver (nor the expertise) to do any of that, he was told to go buy an appropriate screwdriver, and call them back so they would guide him.

Needless to say, I told him to call back, b1tch and complain and actually send a guy in to fix his laptop as per the service contract.

Turns out it was windoze XP that was screwing up. Now what would've happened if he'd fried his laptop with static electricity while trying to do the operation? Would they've fixed it? Provided him with a replacement, AND a backup of ALL his work-related data?

One more thing (1)

totoanihilation (782326) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815547)

Oh and another thing. Out of the box, most of the video features (specially video-out) didn't work. Calling tech support for two hours had me downloading several bios updates and drivers. And to this day, mirroring STILL doesn't work.
Should they be advertising features that don't work out of the box?

Ah. That felt good. Thanks for listening Doctor ;)

Re:Dell is by far the worst... (1)

muftak (636261) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815589)

I think dell's new email support thing is in india. After about 10 emails trying to explain that my floppy drive was broken to a guy that didn't speak English. They sent me a new keyboard...


Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815293)

eeh.. lunix is teh whey of leif.

I don't get Sony (0, Flamebait)

CrackedButter (646746) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815295)

They seem to be the innovator on the PC side of laptops yet from all accounts their machines are rubbish. Considering you pay for quality hardware (which is Sony) and you add this to the old saying "you get what you pay for" i'm surprised Sony has a bad rep.

Re:I don't get Sony (Hello MODS) (1)

CrackedButter (646746) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815341)

Excuse me i'm not trying to be flamebait, this is what i have heard and i am genuinly confused as to why they seem to innovate and yet are lousy on the support side.

Reliability Ratings (3, Interesting)

Fiz Ocelot (642698) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815301)

Overall Reliability ratings aren't that useful imo. So vendor X has a high rating, and vendor Y doesn't, but why? They should break them down more into specific components and the details on those components, such as hard drive manufacturer and model number.

sony is teh suck (2, Interesting)

scaaven (783465) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815303)

interesting how the two ends of the spectrum happen to be the two companies that charge the most for their computers.

Tech Support Horror Stories: 8 not-so-good words (4, Funny)

captain1010 (800750) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815311)

Great News! You've been linked to by Slashdot!

Re:Tech Support Horror Stories: 8 not-so-good word (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815590)

Technically, that's 9 words.

Yea, Great Customer Support From Apple :-( (5, Funny)

Loco3KGT (141999) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815314)


I just used a Mac and backed up 20GB of data over 4 DVD-Rs using your Backup 2.0 software. Unfortunately I no longer have a Mac but need to restore those discs, could you tell me what compression/spanning techniques are used by Backup 2.0 so I can retrieve the data?

Apple Rep:

Apple uses all open standards with their software. Thank you.


Re:Yea, Great Customer Support From Apple :-( (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815557)


That has got to be the most shit stupid thing I have heard all day.

Re:Yea, Great Customer Support From Apple :-( (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815602)

Better Apple tech response:

Would you be interested in a new iMac or possibly a PowerBook?

dell's tech support rating is high because..... (0, Flamebait)

patrick.whitlock (708318) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815315)

the call center is conviently located in the back of your local liquor/lottery/ciggarette store

What about non-official channels? (4, Interesting)

evn (686927) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815320)

Based entirely on my own experiences and those of my friends (how's that for sample size?) I'd bet that for every call the manufacturer receives some poor "computer geek" friend gets ten calls.

It'd be interesting to know how the unofficial support channels stack up against the real thing. I'd bet that neighborhood support would put everyone to shame: we do everything from replacing hardware faster than any mail-in service does to trouble-shoot VPN setups for our bosses and we don't (usually) fall back on the old tech support dismissal "That's a software problem: call Microsoft. Good-bye." Or in the case of a hardware issue "That's a hardware problem: Call IBM. Good-bye."

Re:What about non-official channels? (1)

asdfghjklqwertyuiop (649296) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815538)

It'd be interesting to know how the unofficial support channels stack up against the real thing. I'd bet that neighborhood support would put everyone to shame

From TFA:

OUTSIDE SUPPORT. It's worth noting that the highest-ranked vendors both for reliability and tech support, bar none, are the do-it-yourselfers and the "white box" companies no-names sold by local integrators.

Re:What about non-official channels? (2, Informative)

abb3w (696381) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815561)

It'd be interesting to know how the unofficial support channels stack up against the real thing

Suggestive, from the article:

It's worth noting that the highest-ranked vendors both for reliability and tech support, bar none (emphasis added), are the do-it-yourselfers and the "white box" companies no-names sold by local integrators.

Impressive, given that "bar none" evidently includes Apple-- whose satisfaction levels were about 1 full point out of 10 above everyone else's.

Re:What about non-official channels? (1)

SilentChris (452960) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815568)

That's because there's a couple of key advantages to that "geek" friend:

1.) They're (usually) patient. They don't try to rush you through the help.
2.) They speak your language.
3.) They're local and know you're idosynchricies (sp?)

That last one is crucial. At my job, I've become very familiar with certain users and their patterns. I can often solve problems with that knowledge in hand (X user tends to remove Outlook toolbars, probably happened to X user again, etc.)

Linux vendor support horror story (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815322)

My OS (debian) was running slow (compared to Gentoo), and I kept whining and ranting about how slow it was to the support mailinglists. This went on for hours until someone not from the official company told me that I could just "apt-get" the source instead of the binaries and build the packages myself to get all the speed benefit of gentoo.

Now isn't a nightmare that my official vendor (whom I paid the full list price of $0 for the software) couldn't tell me this themselves, but instead someone from the community had to do it for them?

Ha ha Sony (4, Informative)

Enry (630) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815323)

I'll never buy another monitor from them again.

Had a 21" monitor go bad, so I called Sony to get a repair. They said the warranty was 3 years, and the back of the monitor says "Mfg. August 2001" (this was mid-March 2004). So I should be set, yes?

No. That would be easy.

Apparently, Sony's system says that monitor was manufactured in February 2001 and thus is out of warranty. The only way I could prove the age of the monitor was to send in the original paperwork when we purchased it. Knowing my purchasing department, it's hidden in a box somewhere and it would be worth more to buy a new montior than spend the time looking for the paperwork.

Lousy jerks wouldn't even accept a picture of the back of the monitor clearly showing the serial number and manufacture date.

Re:Ha ha Sony (1)

real_smiff (611054) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815498)

i had the opposite experience. my Sony monitor wouldn't power up (error code), and was out of warranty. it would be expensive for them to collect, and they'd only warranty it for x months after (where x equals 1 IIRC). long story short, after much discussion of what could be wrong the guy gave me the part number of the thing that was likely broken inside it and a place where i could order it (it cost something like a fiver). i never followed it up, being lazy, but i thought that was good service, from a big company like Sony.

Re:Ha ha Sony (1)

oolon (43347) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815551)

Well same thing happened to me with my sony vaio laptop (moving the date the guantanee started to some manufacting date [they lost my orginal registration documents]), they wanted 16 quid to not put the phone down on me before they even start to sort out any problems, their loss really as I will NEVER buy another sony product of any kind ever again, and I have spent alot of money with them before. I bought an Iiyama monitor resently (as I had too look at non sony products) and one of the things that attracted me to them was the 3 year on site warranty, Nice! A switch broke on my hotpoint washing machine just after a year and they came out and fixed it for free, now thats good service and will make me by from them again.


Heard??? (3, Funny)

Eberlin (570874) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815345)

Quite a few of us live them...daily. Multiple reports of how an entire computer doesn't work -- because they failed to enable num lock and the keypad wasn't "working." People whose machines freeze so they turn the monitor off and on. I've seen an occasion where a patron jams a floppy into the drive...backwards and THEN demands that we give him his floppy back.

Then there are those who know the URL but insist on searching for that address in google. Ever heard of an address bar? Guess not. Oh, and when the connection is down, they ask why -- and then proceed to give me a blank "Dummy Mode On" stare when I explain that the proxy server wasn't working. Like I should've said something like "the hamster stopped running."

Not to mention people who ask how to spell "solitary" (instead of solitaire) and those who ask how to get to "yoohoo" or "googles."

And by the way...You're Welcome!!!

Re:Heard??? (1)

rylin (688457) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815535)

Hello? Mirror? Is that you?

I go through the floppy-inserted-wrong-way scenario every week.
My favorite annoyance (err?) would have to be some ASSHAT saying "the internet is down" when they can't log in through their hotmail by typing their email address in the address-bar..

.. not to mention when someone grabs the mouse "next to him/her", even though there's actually two mice closer - one on the mousepad right next to the keyboard, then claiming that the mouse isn't working..

Result tables (4, Informative)

brejc8 (223089) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815353)

Here are the tables of results for notebooks [] and desktops []

Sony support sucks (4, Informative)

Lxy (80823) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815355)

Our company purchased a nice supply of Sony Microvault USB keychain drives. For whatever reason, these drives just stop working. If you unplug a drive without properly dismounting it, it will fail to be recognized under any OS as a drive. Windows reports it as a "security device". There is no way to recover the data, the drive is shot. Further testing showed that even if you dismount it properly, there's a good chance of corrupting the drive.

Call up Sony tech support, you'll get bounced around to several support numbers (some long distance, some toll free). Most of the time you get directed back to the number you previously dialed, and your issue is never resolved.

This is a documented problem, and on the occasion that you're able to get the correct tech support staff Sony will refuse to fix it. There is a lengthy process to fix the drive, but it's a pain and your data is unrecoverable. Sony has since stopped making the Microvaults, but it's a good example of how bad their support really is.

IBM Thinkpads... (5, Interesting)

Pludodog (181200) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815359)

The last time I needed to call IBM (to get the recovery cds for my laptop, they don't ship with them anymore...) I was quite surprised to be connected to a quite knowledgeable guy from Georgia (In the United States). Zero time on hold, took less than five minutes to get everything that I need, and I had the cds in two days.

Compare this to Toshiba, where I have not only never gotten anyone who remotely speaks English, but every repair also seems to involve shipping your laptop back to them, and waiting for two weeks for "parts" that you were told would be in stock every day for a week.

I've also heard good stories about Apple, but nothing can beat my experience with IBM so far.

PC Mag's favorite advertiser? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815364)

I wonder why Dell gets mentioned in the section "VENDORS WE (MOSTLY) LIKE" for PC Magazine...Is it because they are the largest advertiser for that magazine (look at front or back cover of that magazine and I gurantee one is a Dell ad)...

Yes, I'm cynical, so what?

Dell (4, Interesting)

magefile (776388) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815367)

I needed to reinstall XP Pro, but didn't have the disk. So I called; the first guy told me it wasn't covered under the warranty (not true; I had the uber-extended-lifetime warranty), then finally agreed to send it to me. Sent me XP Home instead.

Second person, same deal - sent me XP Home after apologizing for not getting it right. Waited several weeks; it never came.

Third person, "we needed to order more disks" (this is after 3 weeks of waiting for a disk that usually takes 3 to 5 days to come). Promised to send a disk.

After 2 weeks, fourth person: "our database says you've already gotten it". After checking the dates, I point out that that was the *first* disk I was sent - the XP Home one - that I'd already told him about. He checked with tech support, and found out that their database has the same order # for Home and Pro. Corrected the order number, and (hopefully) sent me the Pro disk.

It's been 4 days, so I'm still waiting. And the worst of it is that they always get my "service tag" wrong. It's got an M in it, so it's understandable that they'd mistake it for an N, but I spell it out in the international phonetic alphabet every time. Jeez. I decided to just install Home, since they said I could keep the disks. I have Office Pro, anyway. Anyone know how to do an easy (translation: without data/program loss) upgrade? And yes, of course I finally found the Pro disk the day after I installed home, despite having been looking for it for 5-6 weeks at least.

Oh, and don't forget - you can't lodge a complaint through the phone system. You have to use their website. Smells like BS to me. How many people are going to take the time to do that extra step?

Re:Dell (1)

magefile (776388) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815424)

Almost forgot: I don't understand their system. OS on one disk, Office on another, drivers on 3 or 4 separate disks ... why can't they just give me a DVD (or several CDs) with a disk image on it? And I don't understand (flame-retardant-suit on) why Microsoft doesn't include a "drive imaging" utility with the OS the way Apple does.

Re:Dell (1)

Kenja (541830) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815562)

Because they would have to print new DVDs each time they updated their drivers? Also, what if you're not getting office, should they have to keep diferent DVDs for each chunk of hardware/software they sell? Better yet, what if you dont have a DVD drive?

weird picture in my head (1)

Creepy (93888) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815373)

It's not PC, but I had this picture of an outsourced Indian tech support guy being told he had to talk and act like he was sitting at Sony corporate headquarters (when I worked tech support for Bell Atlantic we were basically told to do that, which is where the germ of this one came from).

So in a sing-song English, No! You do wrong thing! Go back, try again. You understand Enrish? Try 'gain. NO! yooo... un... er.. stand... Eng-rish?

Re:weird picture in my head (1)

travdaddy (527149) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815528)

Call some tech support places at 3AM and you will likely get transferred to India with a guy reading off a script with a heavy accent. But call from 9 to 5 and you may get great support. I hope they considered this and called at different times when figuring out the rankings.

Apple does not make PCs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815379)

Apple does not belong on any PC vendor list: they have yet to make any PCs.

Don't get into the "Apple makes personal computers" semantic game. No one else plays it: a PC means something different from lower-case 'personal computer'. Everyone knows it. Go to and Look at Apple ad campaigns comparing Macintosh computers to PCs. Note that they compare the Mac to the PC, not to "other PCs". Also look at software retail boxes: they mention Mac and/or PC compatibility.

If you think that the Mac is a PC, then I dare you to try and run a game labelled "PC Compatible" on your OS-X Mac without emulation. I dare ya....

Re:Apple does not make PCs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815532)

Try to run that "PC Compatible" game on your Intel/AMD Linux/BSD/BeOS box as well. Guess that box isn't a PC.

Re:Apple does not make PCs (1)

BancBoy (578080) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815552)

And the Annual Troll Competition is in full swing. The results aren't in yet, but Anonymous Coward seems to be favored to clean up this year!

CowboyNeal disagrees with this article... (1)

jmrobinson (660094) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815383)

according to cowboyneal [] Apple's support sucks big time.
Cowboyneal, the Applehater!

What kinda tech support? (2, Insightful)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815393)

Is it Apple answer the most "how do I check my e-mail" questions, or is it they help you set up a network type of questions?

Any monkey can answer 100 questions on [insert basic function here], but do they just tell customers to "format C to fix it" so they can get through the most?

Uh... hello? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815605)

This is apple we're talking about, not Microsoft. The kind of solution you're describing is a Microsoft windows solution. You don't do that sort of thing with real operating systems.

What a crap article (0, Troll)

Al Dimond (792444) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815394)

I RdTFA and I don't know why Mr. Michael Fitzgerald couldn'ta just put all that info in a nice table rather than trying to amuse us with silly "OMG my laptop almost died, I couldn't make this up, ask my mom!" blather.

Government Power (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815397)

# Customer: "My government was very powerful. They can do lots of things you would never imagine."

# Tech Support: "I'm sure in Croatia, the government would have the power to disconnect you from the Internet. The service providers are under their jurisdiction there. However, in America, there is nothing they could do to force our computers to knock you off line. You're safe. I'm telling you, the first and foremost place I'd look is the telephone company to have them do what's called a 'data grade check'--"

I loved old United States...

So Apple is #1 (1)

grunt107 (739510) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815402)

How much of this is the single-vendor, and how much could be attributed to a better OS? There are no numbers of Linux servers/desktops listed.

Also, I love the 9.0 given by the 'self-built' desktops. Why so low (I know I get GREAT support on my home-built products - although the tech support guy acts all superior to me sometimes!!)

Great article. (2, Interesting)

vasqzr (619165) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815407)

Great article. A few points:

In 2002 28% of desktops needed fixing, while this year the number dropped to 17%.

I find that kind of hard to belive. I support about 75 desktop machines, and other than coffee spills destroying a keyboard or two, and a couple mice going bad (I'll blame that on the cords being abused), we haven't had any hardware that needed repair/replacement at all.

DELL. For a company whose users love it, it has some "now, about that " issues to address. Its desktops received high marks for reliability, but when they do break down, Dell's tech support generates some grumbling. Part of the grumbling may relate to the company's outsourcing of portions of its tech support some respondents in our survey complained about not being able to understand some of the help technicians. Whatever the reason, Dell scores slightly below average on tech support.

True. I can't understand anything they're saying, and it's very difficult to deal with their outsourced support.

Its worst category, though, is notebook computers. These rank below average for reliability in general, with 25% of business notebooks needing repairs. On the plus side, when it does have to repair its machines, Dell does a very good job.

I've had 3 Dell Laptop harddrives crash on me. All the same brand of drive, same symptoms. We've also had problems with some of them (we have around 15) overheating and freezing up.

I really wonder how many problems are actually bad hardware, and how many are things like Windows problems, and spyware/viruses.

Amusing Article about tech support (1)

StalinsNotDead (764374) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815433)

This article [] was an amusing story about technical support from the inside. I don't remember if it was posted on slashdot.

What's up with this color scheme?

Earthlink tech support (3, Funny)

TiggertheMad (556308) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815445)

I had a problem with my Earthlink service recently, and sent them an e-mail about it. I got the standard questionare back asking for information about the problem. (what OS do you use? What Browser? Etc.) One of the questions asked, "What kind of computer are you using? (PC, Apple, Dell, Gateway or IBM-Clone)"

I told them I was using a Touring Machine.

horror stories (1)

koan (80826) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815463)

Yes Rajneesh got a hold of some bad curry and hilarious antics ensued.
That and having to argue with "Tom" (heavy indian accent) about who owned my modem rather than why my over priced monopolistic cable (comcast) was yet again not working.

Funniest Tech Support Ever (1, Funny)

robespierremax (800417) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815466)

I'm definitly not the guy involved, but the best tech support story I've ever heard went like this User: My computer doesn't seem to be working Tech: Can you be more specific? User: Sure, the computer screen is black Tech: Ok, can you restart your computer for me? User: Yes, but that'll take a while Tech: Oh, why is that? User: I haven't had power for 2 days Darwin please save us!

Poor support for Linux (3, Interesting)

imbezol (588268) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815469)

Here's a good example of Sony ingenuity.

I have a Sony Vaio laptop that is giving me troubles with the video driver under Linux. It uses the Neomagick graphics chip which is crappy but should be able to do 2D dosktop stuff just fine.

I thought upgrading the BIOS might get rid of the artifacts I see in X all the time. I went to their site to grab the latest BIOS for the machine. The BIOS on their site is in the form of a bootdisk that will do the upgrade for you. That's great. So what's the problem? The _make_ you run a Windows only .MSI file to create the bootdisk. So I can't create it because I run Linux. Further, it will not run on any other system because it detects the hardware is not compatible with the BIOS update. How about letting us download the flash util and the update so we can make our own bootdisk?

It infuriates me that they would force me to have Windows installed just to update the BIOS. []

Someone I know... (1)

solive1 (799249) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815471)

Someone I know told me that someone had called him with the classic "Where's the any key?" story. He also told me about a woman who called and said "I'm pressing the foot pedal, but the computer won't turn on." Turns out the "foot pedal" was her mouse.

Huh? (1)

FLAGGR (800770) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815489)

Apple beats sony for PC support, and it doesn't even make PC's! That says something...

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815553)

Sing it with me folks, "Personal Computer"...


Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815499)

OMG What the fuck is this Vesaci's golden pussy?

Should I bow down and worship the brazen labia?

Sounds like simple mistake. (1)

nlinecomputers (602059) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815508)

I'm yet to figure out why it would have been so hard to just send the same cord/brick piece back with it that I sent in...

I assume like most such places your laptop was assigned to a tech with more the one project on his bench. Tech got sloppy and mixed your power cord with the one sitting next to it on the workbench.

Not a good excuse but understandable HOW it happened. Better work habits by the tech would prevent that.

RTFA? (2, Informative)

tbjw (760188) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815522)

The people who post no longer seem to read the articles. The article itself isn't just about which company has the best tech support, it's also about whose computers are more reliable.

IBM, not Apple, have the best support, but by contrast they have poor overall reliability. Apple hardware is susceptible to the fewest failures of the hardware vendors reviewed, which is why they are top of the list.

Your own worst enemy (4, Insightful)

Potor (658520) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815526)

I find it vaguely disturbing that this man, who would tell us about support and who makes his living with his notebook, would not do automated back-ups.

Although I know that this may not be an absolute statement, so many computer problems are not the fault of the vendor, and those that are, are often made worse by personal computing habits.

It is so simple to do a nightly backup to a ftp server with only a batch file, a text file, and pkzip. I only dare mention this on /. on the off-chance that the article's writer is lurking nearby. It is advice he could use.

cheers, potor

Repairs (1)

smatt-man (643849) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815530)

Why is it that the "Percent needing repairs" for servers was higher (28%) than desktops (17%) and laptops? (19%) I thought servers were supposed to be built more reliable with higher quality parts than a desktop? If I want fewer rapairs I should be using an eMachine (13%) for a server instead of a Sun? (38% ouch!)

Is it a matter of number produced and options? (1)

hadesan (664029) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815531)

Is Apple able to maintain such high satisfaction numbers simply due to:

  1. they are the HW and SW vendor - so they can control what components users stick in their box
  2. they do not have as many component options as PC users have available
  3. do Mac users tweak or customize their BIOS or HW???
  4. if you produce only 10 product a year (only an example) they tend to be a hell of a lot higher quality than someone who produces 10,000 a year. How many Apples are made/sold a year compared to the PC market?

Article hits nail on the head (2, Interesting)

SilentChris (452960) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815536)

Apple: "After all, the company's control over both software and hardware helps make its systems more reliable."

Bingo. Exactly.

I have two separate Apple support stories. One was at my company: for whatever reason, Preferences got corrupt on a 10.3 machine (I thought we left this stuff back in 9). Called Apple up, and the guy was extremely knowledgable and friendly. Walked me through what needed to be done on the command prompt (fun boot!), exactly what files to change, etc. Got back up and running in under 10 minutes.

Second story: iPod on PC. What a disaster. Simple installation: Dell machine that came as is with not a lot of junk installed. Installed the iPod software, installed iTunes, hooked it up and... nothing. Called them up. Played with services, played with dlls... Finally I got results a few days later by reading some forums online (not Apple's).

Now, before you say "Well, Apple shouldn't need to support PCs", 2 issues. One is that they market the iPod for the PC (in fact, I usually see it as "iPod for PC/Mac"). Second, and more importantly, when you become a PC-related company you have to learn to deal with lots of different vendors. Apple isn't stupid: they should know this. They should know (at the very least) to check the common Dell configurations and see what conflicts. "Remove the other programs" isn't an acceptable answer. "Reset the iPod" or "Restore the iPod" REALLY isn't, especially at the alarming rate I've heard it.

I always said, you can get a good feel for how solid a product is but the first bit of documentation you see. 3G iPod, bought a few days ago. Very top of the first reference card you get instructions for reseting it in case it crashes. I've only had to do this once, but kind of ominous, you think?

Re:Article hits nail on the head (2, Insightful)

southpolesammy (150094) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815609)

Apple: "After all, the company's control over both software and hardware helps make its systems more reliable."

Which is why all the bogus claims of Apple's and Sun's pending demise just continue to sound preposterous to me. These companies have ultimate control and ultimate knowledge about their products, have teams that work together to diagnose problems, and consistently achieve customer satisfaction. But this does nothing to stop the trolls that keep barking the same old tired lines.

Other companies could stand to learn a few old tricks from these companies -- customer support is the most important part of a company's existence. Without customers, you are nothing.

Sony Support (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9815560)

Actually I had GREAT support from Sony the one time I needed it. I bought a brand new laptop for my CEO and it came with Windows XP, I wanted it to have Windows 2000 as XP didn't like our domain controller (Active directory at the time, how ironic) Anyways, I couldn't find ANY drivers ANYWHERE for some of the things on the laptop. I called Sony and explained to him that I knew it wouldn't be supported, but I just wanted to know what things were in the laptop and I would do my own driver search (such things as Onboard Audio isn't exactly specific enough for me) Not only did he tell me what was in the thing, but he also pointed me to some drivers out on the net on some obscure website. I thanked him for his time and talked with his supervisor about the wonderful support that I had gotten from him.

dell sucks (1)

momogasuki (790667) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815584)

I bought a laptop from Dell 14 months ago. The LCD backlight burned out a few days ago, so I called them about getting a replacement. Since my warranty just expired 2 months ago, they said it would cost around $600 for a replacement + shipping! This is because they said it would be necessary to replace the whole LCD display. The machine only came with a 1024x768 LCD anyway, and it had about the worst image quality I've ever seen on a TFT panel. It's too bad that laptops become junk when the backlight burns out. I've heard that almost all laptop manufacturers have the policy of refusing to replace the backlight/power inverter only

My last experience with tech support (1)

LilJC (680315) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815585)

Our all-in-one HP went down. We need the fax capabilities. My company lives and dies by faxes. So we call them, I get someone promptly who is friendly, helpful, and sends another unit.

Plug it in, doesn't work. Now I'm thinking there's virtually no chance that the unit has a problem, and the old unit probably didn't either. So I swap out the power supply with another unit we have, works like a charm. I bang myself for not doing this first, and call back to request a replacement power supply.

Again, I get a real person promptly. They are friendly, but I am having a very hard time communicating what I need to them. Transformer, AC/DC computer, "the thing you plug into the printer that plugs into the power cord." Finally, I thought I got through to them.

Another week goes by, and a power cord shows up in the mail. Not what I need. To boot, it was a UK power cord, so even if I needed a power cord it wouldn't have done me any good anyway (Why the hell would they send a plug we only use for 220 to Michigan for their own equipment??). Call them back. Again, someone is on the phone right away, very friendly, and again, completely clueless.

Another week goes by, and another power cord shows up in the mail. At least this time it had an end that I could actually plug into a standard US outlet. Called again, extremely frustrated with their fast, friendly, and clueless service.

Another week goes by, and I finally get a freakin' power supply.

Took almost 6 weeks to get one freakin part from HP (AFTER I figured out what was actually wrong and didn't go with their misdiagnosis).

A recent horror story (1)

SLot (82781) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815591)

(16:08:47) Me: She kept saying the modem won't turn on.
(16:08:53) I'm like, what's on the screen?
(16:09:05) Her: Well, nothing. It's black and says video disconnected."
(16:09:15) Me: I'm like, k, turn the computer on.
(16:09:22) Her: No, the modem isn't on.
(16:09:58) Me: "The modem is part of the computer - if you havenothing on the screen, the machine isn't powered up."
(16:10:10) Her: "Well, it has a green light on."
(16:10:29) Me: "Okay, sounds like it's locked. Push in the power button and hold it until it turns off."
(16:10:34) Me:
(16:10:38) Me: "Still on?"
(16:10:41) Her: "Yeah."
(16:10:47) Me: "Okay, it's really locked. Unplug it."
(16:10:51) Her: "How do I unplug it?"
(16:11:06) Me: There will be a cable plugged into an electrical outlet, unplug that cable."
(16:11:20) Her: "There are two cables - one gray and skinny, one black and fat."
(16:11:49) Her: "Which one of these is the modem?"
(16:11:55) ***/me bangs head on desk.
(16:12:00) Me: "UNPLUG IT!!!"
(16:12:11) Her: "Oh, you mean unplug it from the wall."
(16:12:14) Me: "Yes."
(16:12:27) Her: Audible BZZZZT and scream.
(16:12:32) Me: "Um, you ok?"
(16:12:36) Her: "IT SHOCKED ME."
(16:12:42) Me: Wow, that's not good.
(16:12:52) Her: "What's not good, that it shocked me? "
(16:12:59) Me: "Yeah, that's really bad for the machine."
(16:13:04) Me: "Okay, anyways, turn it back on."
(16:13:15) Her: "Um I push the power button and nothing happens."
(16:13:31) Me: "Okay, dead power supply, and I can't fix that over the phone. Sorry, bye."

not really tech support, but... (1)

WormholeFiend (674934) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815592)

This past winter, I bought a store demo 21" NEC monitor at Futureshop.

Two weeks later, a problem developped with it, something with the red beam or whatever, which caused the monitor to saturate the picture in blue.

I bring it back to the store, and they say no exchange because it's our last one, and we'll call you when it's repaired.

A couple of weeks later they call back and I go pick it up.

The guy gets my receipt and goes to the back. 20 minutes later he comes back with a 14" Panasonic LCD monitor.

WTF dude?! It's supposed to be a 21" CRT. "Oh yea, uh, I'll be right back".

20 minutes later, he comes back with a cardboard box that could've held two 21" CRTs. I look inside and there's my CRT sitting without any packing material whatsoever at the bottom of the box.

I sign the papers, and since the box obviously wont fit in the car, I take the monitor out.

I immediately notice the base is dangling, so I put it on the counter on the side.

All the hook tabs of the base were broken, and two bolts or screws had been drilled through it and into the monitor's underside.

And a huge dent was evident on one of the lower edges of the monitor.

So I look at the guy and said "is this how you repair your products?!"

I asked for a refund, and he was denying responsibility until I demanded to see the manager... 30 minutes of argument, and then he agreed to a refund.

Maybe I should've taken off with the Panasonic LCD...

Iiyama (1)

fiskbil (734457) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815597)

I had an Iiyama monitor the broke down and all I had to do was fill in a form on their web page. They sent me a new monitor within a few days with an address sticker and their customer number at the national postal service here in Sweden.

I unpacked the monitor, put the broken one in the box and the address sticker on it. Called postal services and they picked it up a few hours later and I never heard from Iiyama again.

The monitor might have been expensive, but that kind of service makes it all worth it.

Why I love Apple (true story) (5, Interesting)

nordicfrost (118437) | more than 10 years ago | (#9815600)

I love Apple too, but for another reason: I bought a snow-white keyboard from them, it arrived at the end of the week. After unpacking it and using it a bit, I saw that the spacebar key was a bit crooked. It was also a bit annoying for me to use, as I type a lot in my profession.

I called Apple, and they said it was not problem for me to exchenge the KB at a local Mac dealer. I went to the Mac dealer, and they were asshats to an extreme extend (The store is going south fast, as they are using all the time to blame Apple instead of taking care of customers.)

I hung around the store for ten minutes as the second in line for service, and listened to the four people in the offices playing Snood and complaining to their bosses about how Apple rips them off. That might be true, but you still need to SELL something if you're in the selling computers-thingy.

As I could not exchange the KB there, instead they got angry with me, I called Apple again. They were shocked to hear about the treatment and sent me a new KB. This was friday afternoon. On monday morning, the new KB had arrived. I unpacked it and installed it, getting ready to send the old one back. After installing it I discovered that it lacked the Æ, Ø and Å keys. And I kinda need them to write norwegian.

So I called Apple again, and talked to a kind customer service woman. She heard my story, verified it in their log and said: "God, this is embarrasing", and sent a new KB next day delivery. This was Monday afternoon. Tuesday morning, the new KB arrived, with all the keys, none crooked. But it was the 2002 model, not the 2003 model.

So, again, I called Apple.

This time I said: "Look, I'm not complaining. There has been some fuckups, but your behaviour has been kinda superb in handling it. But the KB is not the one I ordered. I can, however, keep it for a small reimbursement"
The representative said: "What kind of reimbursement did you have in mind?"
"Well, I could really use an Apple Mouse"
"And how much do you want to pay for it?"
"Well, about 30 USD sounds fair"
"And would that be a wired or a wirless one?"
"You know, the wireless is veeeeeery nice..."
"I see. Let me talk to my manager about this, please hold"

I held the line for two minutes, before she returned. "Do you have Bluetooth in your Mac?" she asked.
"Yes, it's a new Powerbook" I responded.
"In that case, I'm sending you a new Bluetooth Apple mouse, free of charge as a was of saying sorry for the mishaps." she said.

After giving her my CC number (without exp. date), she brought up the old order and added the mouse to it. five minutes after, I brought the old order up in Safari and saw that the mouse was due to be delivered soon.

This is, bar none, the best customer treatment I have ever recieved. The fucked up, yes, but really, really went out of their way to unfuck it. And I got a new Bluetooth mouse to replace the piece of crap that is the Microsoft Bluetooth mouse.

And I like typing on the 2002 KB better. Win - win - win...
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