Apple chat support #epic #fail

Standard

Generally I tend to read that Apple’s customer service is great. I want to believe that. I like Apple. At the same time, my personal experience is very mixed at best.

You might remember, the power brick of iPad Pro blew in that damn train. Now as much as I want to blame the train, the adapter should not have been fried even in that situation. So it’s fair to say I should get a replacement – particularly for a brand new machine that I got in February.

So I go to that support website, I give all the information they need, I go into the chat (with Lauren), describe my problem and *BAM* – get kicked out of the chat. Okay. Shit happens. But now I am already pissed off (especially because the transcript I requested did not have any reference number that I can use to continue where I’ve left off).

Okay, ich also schon so ‘nen Hals… and try once more. This time I talk to India.

India: Thanks for contacting AppleCare chat support. My name is India. Please give me a moment to look over your information.
India: Hey there! How’s your day going so far?
Leo: soso – just started a chat with a colleague of yours and it was ended all of a sudden without resolution.
Leo: Hope this doesn’t repeat itself.
Leo: I can paste the transcript.
India: Ah, our apologies about your accidental disconnect if it was caused by something on our end.

Well, they say Apple cannot do cloud services…

(read the rest of my ordeal after the break)

India: Your power adapter isn’t working correct?
Leo: Yep
Leo: The power adapter of my iPad Pro just died on me. Had it connected last night and realized in the morning it hadn’t charged. Checked same adapter with an iPhone and another iPad and it didn’t work either. Then change cables, but didn’t help. Then charged the Pro with my iPad Air 2 adapter and it charged. So looks like the power adapter of my iPad Pro is indeed broken. Better the adapter than the iPad, I have to add. But I really need that adapter to work again.

So, this is the true story. I’ve added the rant about the TGV as I am catching up with all my blog posts since I’ve left. When I was sitting in the train, I did not realize that the adapter was broken. I did notice that it did not charge anymore after that stop in Lille, but I simply thought this fit well with the poor impression I have of that train anyway.

India: Ah ok, I can relate to wanting to be able to have a working charger so you enjoy your battery life longer.

No shit!
See, I get it – these guys are trained to assure the customer they’ve understood the problem. The issue here is that these are too often hollow phrases. This one is a prime example: “I can relate to wanting to be able to have a working charger so you enjoy your battery life longer” – this is like saying “I can relate to wanting to be able to breathe so you enjoy your life longer”.

India: I’m here to help and will be happy to assist you.
India: You have done some awesome troubleshooting so let’s just move forward with your repair options, ok?
Leo: Yes please.
India: Ok, I can provide you all your repair options, what country are you in?
Leo: Singapore
India: Ok, one moment please.

She did not get back to me for what felt like 10 minutes. It was shorter, but certainly very long for a chat.

India: Are you still there?
Leo: Yes

You’re joking, right? You let me wait forever and then you act as if I had you wait?

Leo: Waiting for my options
India: Ok, it looks like you have Apple Authorized Service Providers, Express Replacement, Online service support, and Do it yourself options.
Leo: I like express replacement.
India: Ah ok so it looks like you would need to have bought AppleCare+ to qualify for this option and you have the Limited warranty, ok?
Leo: So… you’re telling me I actually do not have this option for a high value product that is broken and that I’ve recently bought.

You might notice I am getting a little annoyed here.

Leo: So what are my real options then?
India: Did you want to do a mail in?
Leo: How does this work?
India: Ok, for Singapore it shows Apple Authorized Service Provider, you can go online to set up the repair, or a Do it yourself repair. Did you want to take it into an Apple Authorized Service Provider that is the fastest route?

Erg, what? Didn’t we just talk about mail in? Fine…

 

Leo: Ok, you need to be a little focused here. Let’s start wth the authorized service provider. Let’s say I go there – do I get a replacement right away?
India: Yes, they honor our warranties and offer replacements. You can locate these locations at locate.apple.com or I can provide you some locations as well.
Leo: Sounds good. How do I prove I have a valid replacement request?
India: Once they read your serial number from your device they will know you’re in warranty.
Leo: Ok.
India: Sweet! Did you want to locate these locations on your own or did you want me to look some up for you right now?
Leo: Good idea. Can you check whether there is one in terminal 2 at Singapore Changi Airport. I think there was an iStudio
India: I sure can. One moment please.
India: I show four listings with the information you chatted in with.
India: I’ll share them all.

She then shared the four addresses. None of them anywhere close to the airport. Tomorrow we’ll be flying to Indonesia, so if I could handle this at the airport, this would simplify my life greatly.

Leo: Thanks. Not the airport, but it’s a start.

I recalled there were actually other options which now looked more interesting.

Leo: Quick one: what is the do it yourself option?
India: We will mail the replacement part and installation instructions.
Leo: Oh. Why wouldn’t I do that?
Leo: Sounds easy enough.
India: You really don’t have to install anything with your charger.
Leo: Exactly
India: The Apple Authorized Service Provider sounds like the best option.

Huh?!

Leo: It sounds to me the Do it yourself option is best.
Leo: You’ll mail the replacement part, the [charger], and that’s all I need
Leo: As there does not seem to be a service provider at the airport (where I’ll be tomorrow), this is clearly the best option.

 

Makes sense, no?

India: This doesn’t pertain to a charger because there are no installation steps for it.
India: This is just a repair option for something along the lines of your device.

What the…

Leo: Okay, you’re confusing me. You keep on citing options which are no options the moment I ask about them.
India: I’m sorry I was giving you your repair options in general since you didn’t know them.
India: The Apple Authorized Service Provider is your best and fastest option.
Leo: No, I asked for options that were relevant to me.
India: Ok.

“Ok”?

India: Looks like we are all set, correct?

You got to be fucking kidding me!

Leo: Nope, we’re not. But I don’t get the feeling you are able to really help. Thanks anyway.
India: You’re more than welcome. Sorry about the confusion with providing you all your repair options.
India: Thanks for contacting the US Apple Technical Chat Support and you have a splendid day!

Yeah, have a splendid day yourself! I mean, what the heck?! India clearly was clueless on the options, she clearly had no idea how to handle a customer conversation and she clearly did not give a fuck! Man!

I’ll think of other solutions to my problem after I’ve calmed down.

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