Serious Complaint about Apple UK
I am so, SO frustrated right now.
Back in late August, I made the decision to switch from PC to MAC. We have two Imacs for the business, I have an iphone and ipad and so it really made sense to upgrade. We are apple-aholics and I wanted to integrate a laptop into the overall technology strategy that we have in both the business and home environment.
I called Apple direct, where, after a long chat with a sales consultant, I decided to go for a refurbished 15" macbook pro that had a higher specification as this suited the nature of my business as a photographer. I also took out Apple Care and paid the balance in full.
The macbook arrived and I was really pleased to see it came with a "transfer assistant" which would painlessly transfer the data on my PC to the macbook pro. This was scheduled to take 32 hours but got stuck with 32 minutes to go. I tried this 3x before calling Apple. They advised me to do this via an external hard drive, and advised me to buy a Seagate Go Flex for PC and MAC to help with the transition. This cost me an additional £140. I then spent another day waiting to set this up, and again the process did not work.
Finally, in frustration, I called Apple who advised to try a cable to cable transfer. The cable cost £2 and again, this took a full day to make the transfer. Finally, after a LOT of to-ing and fro-ing across a period of a week, I had all my files on the macbook Pro. Happy days! Or so I thought.
Everything seemed to be working until I put my SD Extreme card into the port. This crashed the macbook pro as well as erasing ALL data on the SD card. The data was my children training with the England Rugby team and this once in a lifetime opportunity is now lost forever. My children are devastated. I put this down to "one of those things" and carried on using the macbook pro. Cost of SD Card £40, Value of images lost: Priceless
The following week, my business partner gave me some files to edit (we are photographers) and when I put the USB stick into the MAC, it went into "Kernel panic mode" erased all data and shut down. I called Apple (again,spent hours on the phone) and we then tried interesting a brand new USB stick. Again, the computer went into panic mode.
We then re installed the system and tried yet another brand new (different make) USB stick and again the computer went into panic mode.
Apple then accepted that the the re conditioned macbook pro I had been sold had a hardware issue concerning the port entries and agreed to replace this with a like for like replacement.
The following week, myself and my business partner waited in (me on the Wednesday, her on the Friday) for delivery. We had NO calls, no delivery and NO cards in the door. Yet, "apparently" delivery had been tried. Eventually, the driver left the replacement macbook pro with a neighbour which I collected yesterday. Days taken of work to wait in for delivery: two, Monetary value £500.
I then went to set the new (replacement) Macbook pro up, and was just about to start transferring data from the original macbook pro to the new one, when I noticed that the specification was NOT the same. It was a downgrade. I called Apple who again admitted this was a mistake and that I would be sent a newer replacement with an upgraded specification. They admitted that they were at fault for a second time and that the time and effort was inexcusable.
I was assigned as a PRIORITY1 and then the courier farce began. My business partner and I both waited in at our respective homes, on different days for delivery. We had NO cards in the door and NO delivery, despite the courier company saying this was the case. This happened 3 (!) times before they left the replacement with a neighbour of my business partner.
I wrote an official letter of complaint at this stage - if any of you have done this you will know that you are guaranteed a reply within 24 hours. Did I get one? What do you think? NOTHING.
At the same time, they were also keen to collect the faulty macbook pros - the first courier came with NO id and I refused to hand over the macbooks as advised by Apple. In the end, they organised a one hour courier for collection. They now have NO record of this despite authorising it themselves.
The third macbook pro (again, refurbished) arrived, a newer model with a similar specification. I then spent another 3 days transfering data from my old laptop to the new macbook pro. Everything was working beautifully until (yep, you guessed it) I inserted a USB stick. Again, the macbook shut down into panic mode.
By this stage, I am beyond furious. I email the CEO of Apple UK as well as the head of PR.
Guess what, I then get a phone call from the Executive Department who want to talk to me about the "issues". They admit they are in the wrong, they admit mistakes have been made and they admit that there are problems. They offer me a solution.
This was it:
"We will offer you a full refund and you can then go into an Apple Store to purchase a new one. We will give you a £200 discount". So at my own expense, I have to travel (hour away) to my nearest apple store and spend yet MORE money on a new one? (Cost approx £1,500 less £200 discount so I'll have to still pay out more!)
So, you admit your company are at fault, you admit I have been sent two faulty products, you admit and accept that I have spent in excess of 80 hours trying to resolve this situation and you say you are very "sorry". WEll I am sorry Apple, that doesn't cut the mustard with me.
I am absolutely disgusted at the level of incompetence show by Apple. Firstly, a refurbished MAC isn't checked properly and yet still sent out with faulty ports and secondly, whoever is meant to check the spec is like for like is also at fault, then a third macbook pro is also faulty. Not to mention the incompetence of the delivery service. You admit ALL of this, but still only offer me £200 in compensation.
The total cost to me (so far)
SD Card: £40
3 USB Sticks: £60
Seagate Goflex as recommended by Apple: £140
2 days off work waiting in for courier: £500
More than 40 hours spent on the phone to apple trying to sort this out: £2,500
Cost of losing photographs: - PRICELESS.
The inconvenience and incompetence shown is incorrigible. I find it incomprehensible that a company such as Apple is providing this level of service and I want to highlight that despite having an amazing platform and product, that the service offered to us consumers is diabolical. I was even offered FREE help from a senior technician, but of course, I pay for applecare so how is this free? Ridiculous.
In the recent case between Samsung, Tim Cook, CEO made a special note of Apple's ethos being less about money and moe about values and he said:
"Today, values have won and I hope the whole world listens."
Exactly what I hope this blog post will do.
So, please leave your comments of support below, please tweet using the #applegate and stand up for the ordinary consumer - to be fobbed off like this is beyond all reasoning.
Thank you for reading this.