The author of the text is Maciek Wodecki, who described in this material his own adventure with Apple and the company's website in Poland.
And – a handful of (full) facts
This is the story of one iPhone X 256GB, which under one warranty visited the site 6 times, was replaced 4 times with "new, free from defects" and still does not work.
However, in reality, as it happens in life, the matter is not about the iPhone X, but about man. The man who stood with this iPhone in his hand and collided, unfortunately very painfully and repeatedly, with a wall of corporate procedures.
The story began innocently. An iPhone X had a bug and was replaced with a new one.
It happens. Even Apple sometimes breaks down. A second malfunction happened later. After first switching on the "new, defect-free" phone, it turned out that the FaceID camera was not working. Strange, unlucky. But it also happens. Supposedly.
Apple Answer: Replacement for "new, free from defects"
So the iPhone X has been replaced again with "new, free from defects". This is the third play, within one purchase, "new, free from defects." Let's call it "Art # 3".
Unfortunately, it turned out quite quickly that this art is not free from defects. GPS did not work in it, the phone lost range, it did not connect to Wi-Fi often. The phone was sent to the service.
Apple Answer: iPhone X does not work, replacement for "new, free from defects".
The client was already in possession of "Art # 4", completely "new and free from defects." Does this also sometimes "happen"? I think less often …
Needless to say, every user’s frustration at this stage would be at a relatively high level. Very expensive phone, flagship, which had to be on the website 3 times, you had to go to the website, restore the device and install. Nothing pleasant, or rather a very unpleasant thing, especially after spending several thousand zlotys. And so it was this time.
However, the story does not end here. Gaining momentum. And from the point of view of the iPhone and its owner – it is gaining slower pace.
Owned Art # 4, this "new and free from defects", also proved to be free from defects. Also, GPS did not work in it, just like in the "defect-free" Art # 3. Impossible? And yet…
The phone was sent to the service, but this time the application was rejected (?!)
Apple Answer: GPS is working properly.
Why??!! Not known As proof, after all, photos were attached (the service itself asked for photos)
The customer asked for clarification by phone.
Apple Answer: you do not talk to the service by phone, you have to send an e-mail or appear in person.
The customer visited the site personally to discuss how it is possible that according to the GPS service it worked, since it really does not work and evidence is attached, according to the guidelines of the website.
Apple Answer: GPS is working properly. This is the expertise. Telephone for pickup.
Can you talk to a technician at Apple after such an expertise? Absolutely not. The client requested a re-diagnosis of the phone, which was done.
Apple Answer: Rejection of a complaint. GPS is working properly.
The client, already knowing some of the procedures, made another trip and personally in the salon, demanded a conversation with the manager.
Apple Answer: the manager does not talk to clients, please send an email.
The client wrote the mail in accordance with the instructions. And in the email he requested a conversation with the manager. 3 sent emails to the manager.
Apple Answer: no answer.
The client again personally visited the website to talk to the manager.
Apple Answer: the manager doesn't talk to the clients, you have to write an email.
After colliding with the wall of corporate procedures several times and achieving an abstract level of frustration and having no way out of the impasse, the customer answers the phone. A phone that does not work with GPS. Still.
The customer returns the phone to the service again. Attaches new evidence. This time the movie.
Website response: GPS is working properly, do not restore the phone from iCloud (?!?)
Let's gather the facts:
- GPS does not work on the phone
- This is Art # 4, "new, free from defects," listed because Art # 3 "free from defects" had a broken GPS.
- The service ignores evidence clearly showing that the phone does not work GPS.
- The service suggests not to use the phone restoration service from iCloud. This is an Apple service that is one of the key elements of the Apple ecosystem. Plus, the customer pays for her regularly.
- Nobody on the site wants to start a discussion with the client, and this is reflected in the machine of procedures.
In the meantime, after 12 days of waiting and many interventions … comes the response of the service manager with information that everything is in accordance with the procedures and the phone is "new, free from defects" and works properly. And if in doubt I can call the helpline …
Sounds like a new novel by Franz Kafka? Relax, it's just emejzing from Apple. And now it will be even more interesting …
During the visit, a service employee provided information to call the helpline and ask a senior technician, they can help there. Because it's some other hotline. In one you can't talk to a service, and in the other you can talk to technicians, but not those from the service. Theoretician techniques. These are two separate entities. With a feeling of complete helplessness and absurdity, the client agreed and called.
It turned out that contact with the hotline turned out to be a nightmare for the client and only a further reflection of the corporate pinball procedures.
As part of phone diagnostics, senior technicians at the Apple Hotline required various diagnostic and verification tests. In total, it consisted of:
- Receiving 49 telephone calls lasting 190 minutes (3.5h)
- Exchange of over 30 emails
- Devoting over 10 hours to diagnostic tests, under which Apple helpline expected:
- Repeatedly reset the phone, log out and log in
- Repeat / reset the phone
- Change settings constantly
- Install specialized diagnostic software several times called "Profile"
- Allow technicians access to the phone in some special mode, with access to phone data (uncomfortable feeling)
- Upload a dozen or several dozen photos and screenshots as further evidence
- Play the phone from iTunes 4 times
- Install and uninstall iTunes 2 times using this procedure: https://support.apple.com/pl-pl/HT204275
It went without reinstalling Windows … Thank you Apple!
The effect of this struggle: GPS still does not work, and the helpline offers further diagnostic tests. The customer in the ongoing helplessness and frustration again gives the phone back to the service. This time, evidence of even better quality is attached – a comparison with the old iPhone6
After a few more days there is a diagnosis.
Website response: GPS damaged. The phone is replaced with a "new, free from defects" can be picked up on the site.
The situation for the client is outrageous. The phone was replaced with a new one because of a broken GPS. The service replaced the telephone as if it were new, and issued a damaged phone in which the GPS did not work. During the next three diagnoses, the service ignored the customer's evidence, rejected the legitimacy of the fault, and finally, again, replace the phone with a "new" one. And the whole case has been going on for over 2 months – 2 months without a phone. The client does not want to answer the phone and requests a conversation with the manager again.
Apple Answer: The manager does not talk with clients.
The client requests a conversation with the manager's supervisor.
Apple Answer: The supervisor does not talk with clients.
The client requests an email to the manager's supervisor.
Apple Answer: The GDPR prohibits the transfer of such data because the name is in the email.
… a rather unpleasant conversation ends with obtaining an email to the manager's supervisor …
The client expects in an email to the manager of the personal or telephone conversation (and describes the whole matter)
Manager's supervisor's reply: Everything is in accordance with the procedures. The phone is replaced with "new and free from defects". And by phone you can contact by calling the Hotline, where calls are recorded.
The customer calls the helpline to talk to the Manager's Supervisor, as recommended in the email.
Apple Answer: Manager's supervisor does not talk with clients.
The client sends another email to the Manager's Supervisor in which he expects:
– replacing the phone with a new one in a box, not another piece of service
– phone call
Supervisor's response: no response whatsoever
A frustrated customer receives a phone call from the site. It is. Looking for # 5 under the same warranty. On the day the telephone is picked up (Sztuki # 5), the customer carries out a diagnostic test from the service on 23/09/2019 And which is unbelievable, GPS also doesn't work in Art # 5, which can be seen in this video
II – Apple telephones quality
When familiarizing yourself with this case and reading about similar ones, the question arises – whether the quality of Apple phones has dropped so dramatically, or is the Apple website making a scam about which is being written in foreign forums and says behind the scenes that phones issued by the service as "new, slow from defects, "in fact they are old and full of defects. It is said that these are old phones from other markets, which are repaired with varying degrees of success, and from new things they only receive a new housing and a new glass to make a good first impression.
Is it true? Is such a scam even possible? Not known Undoubtedly, it is very difficult to verify, if at all possible. And if it's true, then the next question is whether this is a practice occurring only in Poland or just an Apple business model?
One thing is certain – 4 phone exchanges for a new one under the 12-month warranty and the promised 5th replacement are something very strange. Especially due to the fact that this is a premium telephone from the top shelf.
III – corporate reality A.D.2019 and dehumanization of big business.
But as you read at the beginning of the story, it's not about the phone. And about man. About a man who, in a clash with a corporation, is helpless and lonely.
This is how the corporate machine works today. As long as she works and you don't want anything from her, everyone is happy. If a problem arises – you are left alone. And if you don't fit into the procedures, you won't do anything. Is Apple an exception here, is it a new trend and our immediate future?
And this is what is most emejzing.
On the one hand, corporations do everything they do for us. In any case, they communicate and they want us to think about them. Physical products are getting better, services are also getting better. This is required by the market – both business and consumer. And everyone is satisfied with this fact. Customers pay more and more for products, corporations get richer, they improve their products for part of their funds, and customers with a smile (or sometimes with a temporary grimace visible when crossing subsequent price barriers) buy improved versions of the same products. And the carousel is spinning. Everyone in their mass is happy. And the machine works perfectly. And all this for us.
But unfortunately, sometimes, and probably more recently, this great machine of glace splendor is jamming. It will sound quite funny, but it starts to look like that when
"Everything works, everything works". The situation gets complicated when a problem occurs. Then it turns out that we are no longer great consumers for whom corporations create great products. Then we are only pawns that can move on the chessboard of automatic mechanisms and procedures.
"We don't have your coat and what will you do to us." This grim joke of the '80s (which Misia enjoyed very much) illustrating the approach to "customer service" during the communist era, is becoming our reality again. In the '70s or' 80s, indifference to human problems was almost everyday life.
In the '90s and '00, there was a total change in thinking and approach to entrepreneurship. As playful as the "coat", the saying "Customer, our Lord" was almost a symbol of doing business and also permanently entered the everyday language. Not by accident. Everyone thought so – big and small. Everyone wanted to pamper their client, because the common opinion was that it leads to success. What's more – it led.
And what does it look like today? Differently. But it is evident that large corporations are testing the operation of increasingly formalized procedures that will be able to be supported by fewer and fewer people in the future. Bots, "vending" cabinets, semi-automatic dispensing machines, and finally robots. On the one hand, it sounds like a very distant future, on the other, you can't help feeling that it is happening today, but is only being tested by people. Organizations are becoming increasingly dehumanized.
The change can be clearly seen on the example of offices in which this change "for good" took place later than in private companies and because of this most of us noticed it well. Once, nothing could be done at the office. Now we have a time that is very nice, everyone is helpful, young people willing to work appeared behind the windows. And technology helps them make everything work faster and better. And when something gets stuck, in case of a bigger problem, you can always talk to the manager. A manager who is also willing to help, kind and obliging. But above all, his scope of competence allows him to take action leading to a solution. And it really works. I think most of us have experienced this. Change for the better, right?
Corporations, on the example of the title Apple, go a step further. The technology there is even more advanced, the scale is even larger, and – probably – the costs of such a positive approach to "customer service" are too high. The numbers probably show that it's not worth it. That man in many areas slows him instead of improving his business. Because he looks for solutions, gets involved, devotes time. It is different in sales – the human factor drives sales. But in after-sales service is a cost and burden to the process. So what is the solution – brutal procedures.
For information from the client: "The story is related to two (?? !!) Apple Hotlines (it is not known exactly how they are connected and who decides what) and iSpot Sp. z o.o., which, as I have been told many times, is "authorized and the only official Apple partner in Poland." This is where all phones are supposed to come under warranty. There is no other higher instance in Poland. "
Acknowledgment from the customer: "In all this abstract situation, the only people who showed understanding and tried to help are Mrs. Marianna and Ewa. Both are older technicians on the Apple Hotline (probably the foreign one, not the Polish one, although it is hard to know). Their operation was limited by sick procedures and they could do nothing more, but they both tried, personally engaged, and the feedback from them was always quick, which absolutely can not be said about the Polish branch of Apple. "
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