Thursday, June 22, 2006

I've got the power...

Yeah! I finally got my comp back, and up and working, no thanks to Dell. I think I've had the worst customer service, for the simplest of all problems that could afflict a laptop. Part of the craziness was covered in my last post. I was annoyed then. I think I went through a whole gamut of negative emotions, until I got to this point where I just quit caring! And only then did I get my computer to work! Let's backtrack some. I got sent the wrong adaptor, which I returned and chatted with another guy who insisted that I had been sent the right adaptor and that I had a motherboard problem. So I packed up the laptop and sent it in to Dell on the 18th of May. It was supposed to take 5 business days. It was past 5 business days and I hadn't heard from Dell. So I go online again, chat with another nincompoop. This guy tells me that the laptop had already been delivered to me. I was like, WHAT?! Where to? Which address, cos I haven't recieved my laptop back again! To which the dumass says that it was sent to this city in this state. I keep asking him for the darn street address, and he keeps giving me the city and state!!! Finally he gets it in his THICK head that I'm asking for the street. He gives me the right address, and also gives me the DHL tracking number. I check it out and it shows the empty box that Dell delivered to me so I could send the laptop to them! He then tells me that the repairs that are required on the laptop are out-of-warranty. He says he knows nothing else, and gives me a phone number to call. I call them and this Indian guy tell me that it would be around the 2nd of June by the time I get the comp back, and that everything was very much going to be covered by the warranty. I figure since I'm moving to a different state, they should just mail it to me in the place I'm moving to. And it was delivered to the new place, exactly on the day I moved there! This was when I thought...whew! All's well that end's well. Boy! was I kidding myself or what!

I 'power on' the laptop, and less than a minute later the laptop turns itself off! They'd sent it back to me unrepaired. So I talk to another guy on the phone. Another Indian : Dave. He's all apologetic. Takes case ownership, says he'll do the needful. This was on the 4th. I send it back to Dell on the 5th. Here I'm thinking it's gonna take just as long again, but I get a call from the place I used to stay, on 7th evening. Turns out to be the DHL guy. He has my laptop with him and he's looking to deliver it to me. I tell him I'm a 4 hour flight away, he tells me to call Dell, but he takes down my new address. He takes it back to the headquarters in the nearest big city. And there my laptop stayed until it was delvered to me exactly 2 weeks. That Wednesday I called Dave, tried to leave a msg for him, but there was no space on his voicemail. So out of desperation, I try to talk to someone else. I get another Indian. I don't remember the initial name he gave me, but he did give me his Indian name at the end of the conversation - Kamal. He puts me on hold for atleast a half hour. Well, all Dell technicians and customer service reps put you on hold for a minimum of 30 mins. After a while, you just HAVE to get used to it. Anyways, Kamal tells me everything's all fixed, and I should get my comp in 2 business days. When a Dell anyone tells you that, you can be sure that it'll be over at your place the next morning. So I wait for a couple of days and hit the weekend, completely exasperated! I call and leave a msg for Kamal on his voicemail, but I don't get any response from him. Then I send him an email. No response again. He was supposed to call me on Friday to ensure that I got the laptop. Didn't happen. So I call Dell again, get an Indian woman : Soumya. She actually introduced herself as Soumya! Well! Whaddya know! She does the exact same thing Kamal does. Nothing happens. BUT gives me the all important tracking number. So I can see that that package is going nowhere. They actually had this message up there : Awaiting pickup by recipient as requested. Now I thought that it was obvious that given that I had the length of the country between me and the laptop, I never would have requested a pick-up! Anyways, nothing happens again. I call DHL and ask them what needs to be done. They tell me that I need to get some authorization done by Dell. The customer service rep at DHL was very vague abt it to. So I call Dell....again. I get this American - Drent. He conferences me with DHL, gets the right info from their customer service rep, he and I find out that DHL requires an email from the Internal Logistics something, with the right address. 24 hour processing. Should be with me right after the processing is done. Drent conferences me with a cust serv. rep at Dell, John - another Indian. Listening to them talk......I didn't know whether I should laugh or cry. Drent had just been told what to do, John hadn't a clue! Personally I don't think ANYONE at Dell knows how to deal with ANYTHING. They supposedly fix everything. This was on the 14th. I call DHL on the 16th, and theres no change. They email hasn't gotten through. So I call Dell again....getting repititive isn't it? I get someone who sounds Indonesian to me. She pushes the email again. I get the laptop again on Monday.

Lo and behold! It's still not working. I'm guessing if you've read this far, your abt a tenth as frustrated as I was. I call Dell again, and tell this other Indian guy - Nelson, to please send me an adaptor. He keeps telling me that there could be some other problem. I tell him (lying through my teeth here) that I can actually see some damage on the plug. He's forced to send me the adaptor. It gets to me on Wednesday, I wasn't in the whole day. I pick it up from the apt. office plug it into the comp, and guess what? It works.

Moral of the story : Don't buy a Dell. If you do, then make sure you have a landline, because the number of times they put you on hold, and the number of minutes you lose while holding, your cell phone will be out of minutes in a couple of days.

I'm just glad that I'm still under warranty. Can you imagine the amount of money DHL makes out of Dell's shennanigans????