Tuesday, June 9, 2009

My Long Battle With Apple Customer Service

After eight years of Apple fanaticism, for the first time, I’ve become slightly discontent with Apple’s customer support team. The manner in which Apple Care has handled my most recent repairs has left me without a working computer for the last 45 days. As a college student, this means many hours in the library completing school assignments.

In the beginning of May 2009 I brought my MacBook Pro in for repair to the Mall at Millenia in Orlando, Florida. The latch on my laptop stopped working and I simply requested a repair on the latch. The representative claims that the laptop needs to be sent in to Apple for repair and will be back to me in a few days. A few days later the laptop arrives back on my doorstep, still with a broken latch; according to the repair report they had wiped the hard drive, replaced the motherboard, and replaced the screen. I have absolutely no idea why they would replace all of these expensive parts when I just needed a latch replacement.

Several hours after booting up the computer, the computer overheats and crashes. I was then unable to use the computer for more than two hours straight without it overheating. I figured they must have done the wrong repair on my computer so, I bring it back to the Apple store for another repair. This time they agree to the latch replacement and claim they will replace the motherboard to fix the overheating issues.

On May 15th 2009 I head back to the store to pickup the computer. They give me a repair invoice for a replaced motherboard, superdrive, and bottom casing; the total came out to $186. After about an hour of dealing with different managers, I get the bill written off. Then, as I leave the store a manager gives me a talk about being responsible and that next time the repair is on me. This was a little bit irritating but, I accepted his words of wisdom and left the store.

I bring the laptop back home assuming that I would be using a fully repaired machine but, the overheating issues were just as bad as they were after the first repair. So, they fixed the latch and replaced the motherboard twice and my computer was then worse than ever, or so I thought.

I spoke with an Apple representative, Andrew Park, about the issues I had run into. He claims he will personally oversee the repair and that a box would be coming in the mail; he also stated that I would receive a replacement laptop if the repair was unsuccessful again.

The box comes and I send it in to Andrew with the computer packed inside. After 10 days go by, I am curious as to why I have not heard anything back yet so, I call Andrew for a status update. Ten phone calls and 5 days later, I am yet to hear back from him.

Given the inability to access Andrew directly, I call in again to speak with another Apple Care representative. After speaking with them for over two hours, they inform me that they have no idea where the computer is and that they will not be able to replace it.

So, what started with a broken latch ends in me being out $1999.