Problems with Best Buy's customer service for my Droid


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  1. cconover

    cconover Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    I wasn't really sure which forum to put this in since it's not a carrier issue, but since it relates to my Droid I figured that was the best choice.

    Anyway, Today I dropped my Droid by accident, or rather it got knocked off a bar-style table, so a drop of probably 4 feet or so onto a hard floor. The phone has been dropped a few times in the past, but always been fine. Anyway, when I picked it up & put the battery back in (when it's fallen in the past the battery cover usually comes off & the battery comes out) and went to turn it on, the screen backlight turned on but the actual display didn't do anything. I rebooted a few times, still no luck. I let it boot & tried to unlock it by sliding my finger where I normally would, and felt the haptic feedback from this action so the touch sensor was still working, just not the actual display.

    I tell you all this as backstory to my issue (I'm long winded, I know). I bought my Droid from Best Buy and got their protection plan which seemed like a good deal (and to be fair, still does). I was under the impression that if my phone is broken & I walk into Best Buy with it, they'll give me another one covered by my protection plan. I tried this, and was asked whether I'd like a "loaner phone". Confused, I asked why I wasn't getting another Droid to which I was told that my Droid would have to be sent in for repair, and if it couldn't be repaired I'd be given a new Droid. In the mean time I could use a loaner phone for a fully refundable $150 deposit. This seemed like a manageable option. However, the phone they wanted to give me as a loaner (to an Android smartphone user of many months) was a Verizon Blitz. Seriously. I tried to explain that the Blitz would never be a viable solution as I rely heavily on my Android device for work, and even if I could use another Android device that would be fine, but they didn't seem to have a solution. So I took my broken Droid back and went home, which is the point I'm at now.

    All this is now followed up by a few questions:

    1) Does anybody else have a Droid (or other Android phone) purchased through Best Buy with a protection plan & have had to make use of the protection plan? Did you end up in a similar situation, or did Best Buy clue into the fact that you as an Android user would need another Android device as a loaner?

    2) I'm wondering if, were my phone to be taken to Best Buy in a state that is obviously unrepairable (e.g. "I backed over it by accident", "it fell out my second story window", I ran over it with the lawn mower because I didn't realize it had fallen out of my pocket", etc.) would they give me a new one on the spot? The information the girl told me this afternoon seemed to point to that, but I'm seeking input/opinion/experience on this matter.

    Thanks in advance! This is very frustrating as I'm now without a phone as well as a viable short-term solution.
     

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  2. tlpalmer01

    tlpalmer01 Active Member

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    i had that plan and i did some reading and also talked to best buy rep...i got rid of it because they cannot fix phones in store..they have to send them out and the average wait i seen was 4 to 6 weeks, and i believe that after a few times of sending it out u would get another one..i dont know about the loaner but the plan is good but not for smartphones from what alot of people have said..
     
  3. Jim Dawson

    Jim Dawson Well-Known Member

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    I bought my Droid from Best Buy and turned down their extended warranty or insurance. I bought a Square Trade warranty and added the Droid to my State Farm personal articles policy for damage or loss with no deductable. I think it was $30/year.
     
  4. Ezduzit08

    Ezduzit08 Well-Known Member

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    I bought it with mine and I didnt mind the loaner because I had my phone back in a week!
     
  5. ghostlink

    ghostlink New Member

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    I used to work at geek squad and I had customers with this issue daily. They always believe their stuff will be swapped in store but in the terms no one ever reads, that's not the case. Everything gets sent out for repair. That's how they make money off the service plan.

    If you were misled its because turn over at bb is high and staff is typically young. I had a GM younger than me. Anyhow, complain to a manager. Offer to have them fulfill the contract to swap your phone. Basically u cash in your plan. Once they fully replace a device the plan ends and you'd need to buy a new plan. If u ask them to just replace it and fulfill your plan they may go for that.

    Otherwise throwing a tantrum usually works.

    Next time don't shop at best buy, problem solved.
     
  6. Ezduzit08

    Ezduzit08 Well-Known Member

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    I to use to work at bestbuy and that want work! trust me! if they swap that phone out with out it going to service they will eat the cost and they WILL NOT DO THAT! besides they have the best prices why not buy from them?
     
  7. cconover

    cconover Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    So after going to both the Best Buy and Best Buy Mobile stores near me, I had no luck whatsoever. The guy at the Best Buy Mobile actually seemed like he would've fulfilled the plan had he had any Droids in stock. He sent me back over to the other store (the one I was at originally) and I talked to the same girl, who reiterated that there wasn't anything she could do but would email her manager anyway. I left and went over to the Verizon Wireless store per suggestion of a friend, to find out if they'd honor the Motorola warranty despite my having purchased the phone at Best Buy. They did, and are overnighting me a new phone since they didn't have any in stock.

    So bottom line, I agree that Best Buy is not a good place to buy your phone, despite the lower prices. Their customer service is unreliable at best, and insulting/unrealistic at worst.
     
  8. Soultics

    Soultics Well-Known Member

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    I have a sister that works at Best Buy Mobile, and yeah the whole black tie protection plan is a load of shit. The only way they won't try and fix it is if its obviously not possible (ie ran over by a car).
     
  9. Ezduzit08

    Ezduzit08 Well-Known Member

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    Thats like saying every store is the same, which in fact they are different, I have never had any issues with the store I deal with in S.C. by the way was verizon sending you a refurb or new phone?
     
  10. djg08642

    djg08642 Member

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    I used to work at Best Buy and have their protection plan on every expensive piece of electronic equipment I bought while I worked there. Including my Droid. It's saved my butt when the battery latch fell off my old Blackberry and when a lightning storm fried my $800 TV. The Blackberry was comically deemed "totalled" and I got an in-store credit for $500 and as for the TV, (although it did take 4 weeks) it was fixed for free. It's not a bad deal on things you don't absolutely NEED right away. I always keep an old Verizon phone on hand in case anything happens to my primary.

    I'd have to agree with Ezduzit, at least at my store, throwing a fit is a quick ticket to get the cops called on you and be escorted out of the store. Although that could just be the area my store was in... We had the cops chase a guy through the store and taze him once.

    Oh, and to answer the OP question, no... even if you microwave your phone or go swimming with it, they'll still have to send it out to officially be deemed unrepairable.
     
  11. cconover

    cconover Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Fair point. Let me clarify by saying that the actual Best Buy employees I dealt with were professional, and as helpful as they could be given the company policy. I wouldn't even be that annoyed if Best Buy had the forethought to realize that smartphone users may actually be very reliant on the features & capabilities of that phone, so offering a loaner that's just a feature phone is not only insufficient, but blatant disregard for the needs of the customer. Even if they can't provide a Droid because it's a higher end, more expensive Android device, they could at least offer a Droid Eris or something that supports apps & capabilities Android users likely depend on.

    Verizon is mailing me a new phone.
     
  12. cconover

    cconover Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    That makes sense. However, Best Buy should realize that cell phones are perhaps the one product they sell that are mission critical to many people, and ought to be providing service based on those needs. I have no problem with them needing to ship the phone out for service, but provide me with a loaner option that actually fills the void instead of a very basic feature phone that does almost none of what I require & why I even bought a smartphone in the first place, as a stopgap while my phone is being serviced for an indefinite amount of time. There are things I like about Best Buy, but at this point cell phone protection is a major negative for them.
     
  13. dmodert66

    dmodert66 Well-Known Member

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    I bought my phone at Best Buy (but not the warranty deal). They where great and professional. First I bought an Eris (I bought it there because they give you the rebate up front, rather than mailing it in and they also have a 30 day no questions return policy). I used the Eris for a few weeks. By that time, my brother had bought a Droid. I messed around with both for a few days, and decided the Eris was too slow. I had put a few small scratches on the Eris, and was concerned, but packed it up and took it back.

    I got even more nervous when I realized the guy I was doing the exchange with was the BBM Manager! I thought for sure he would look at the scratches and say no dice. To my surprise, he barely looked at the phone (just took the battery out to get the ESN number). He then handed me my beloved Droid, charged me the difference (between the Eris - rebate price and the Droid - rebate price). Then it was done.

    I looked at the Warranty contracts pretty closely, as I was ready to get that. I decided not to and opted for the VZW insurance (even though more expensive) because they included the phone being stolen. I read the contract, and asked the manager point blank if they covered a stolen phone and he said no. I'm not sure, that may have changed by now though as this was in November 09...

    **EDIT** I do agree, if they have to send it in, they should at least give you a smartphone to use in the mean time. Even if it is a lower quality smartphone (like going from your Droid to an Eris)...
     
  14. Grimshak

    Grimshak Member

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    I work at Geek Squad, and I opt'ed for the Verizon plan over the Geek Squad BTP (Black Tie Protection Plan). You will NEVER get an exchange with the plan unless it goes to the service center and they deem it either too expensive to repair, or unrepairable. Now, it isn't a rip off by any means. We cover some things that the Verizon plan won't. However, you DO have to wait for it to be repaired, which can last between a week to a month.

    If the repair takes more than a month, the service center is suppose to approve the store to give you a new one for customer satisfaction reasons. It does suck that you gotta pay for the loaner, but at least you get the money back (And it makes sense on Best Buy's end. I wouldn't give somebody who just broke their phone a loaner for free :p). And about the loaner not being an Android-based phone...I could say the only reason is inventory. It sucks, it really does, but most of the time my store doesn't have enough Droids as is!

    A lot of the protection plans Best Buy offers are worth it, but are almost NEVER exchange (except for cheap MP3 players and such).

    If you have any other questions about Best Buy Policies or Geek Squad Repair questions, PM me. I'll be glad to help, and I won't give you any bullshit, promise!!
     
  15. cconover

    cconover Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    I certainly agree that it's reasonable to require a deposit on a device that Best Buy is expecting to get back in working condition. However, it's not reasonable or good customer service to provide a customer who is a smartphone user and may likely rely on the features of that smartphone as an integral part of their daily activities (both personal and professional). That's really my only major complaint here: I would honestly have rather had my phone repaired than replaced as the physical keyboard on it is different from any other Droid I've encountered, and the keys are much more raised and textured which I like and would have liked to keep. Using a dumb phone for up to a month is completely out of the question though, and would directly impact my ability to do my job. It would make sense to me for Best Buy to offer the dumb phone loaner at a lower deposit price, or perhaps the smartphone at a higher deposit price, but offer both (or at least the smartphone) and keep the customer satisfied & happy with Best Buy (and preserve a future customer) by setting it up for the customer to be impacted as little as possible by the process.
     
  16. Grimshak

    Grimshak Member

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    I agree. I actually went back and changed my post to reflect that before you were finished replying. Like I mentioned in my edit, it definitely isn't a good deal for the customer. The only excuse they have is a lack of inventory, and it isn't a good enough excuse. In a case like that, I would try *TALKING* to a manager. Explain your situation and why you need a better phone for what you do. I know my managers would work with you.

    Good luck!
     
  17. stevehy

    stevehy Well-Known Member

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    I have been reading this thread and a service policy that you pay for on a smartphone where repair can take up to a month is reprehensible.
    I am sure Grimshak is sincere but, get real. That is not service and don
     
  18. Grimshak

    Grimshak Member

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    I didn't say the service plan on phones was great. It does cover some things the Verizon doesn't, but I would only really recommend it for non-smart phone users. I'm sure with the fact that smartphones are becoming more common, Best Buy is going to change the plan so you can have smartphone-loaners.

    And the up-to-a-month is rare. Like I said, if it takes a day longer than that, you normally get an exchange.

    As I mentioned before, I went with Verizon's insurance because I have a better chance of getting a new phone the same day. Don't forget, you can end up with shitty re-furbs from Verizon, and end up making trips back. Both sides have their down sides, and some people prefer to get their current model repaired instead of a refurb.
     
  19. Caveman419

    Caveman419 Well-Known Member

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    Always try talking instead of throwing a fit. I work with a lady who bought her phone from Best Buy and purchased the Black Tie Service. She dropped her phone and cracked the screen. When she took it in to the store and was informed about sending it off for repairs she talked the manager into giving her a Droid as the loaner. But the key word is "talked," she did not get hostile in any way. Come to find out, her phone needed to be replaced and she just kept the loaner.
     
  20. Grimshak

    Grimshak Member

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    Exactly. I know for a fact that if a manager is treated like shit, they come to realize they don't want the business of someone who is going to complain about half the things they buy to get free shit.
     
  21. swampgeek

    swampgeek Member

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    Look at it from best buys shoes for a minute. You broke your phone, they are now putting store inventory at risk by giving you a loaner phone. They are also paying to expidite your phone to a service center and paying a well compensated technician to repair your phone, then paying to have it expidited back. This may happen at hundreds of locations across the US every day making in store repair extremely unprofitable as they would have to employ thousands of technicians across the US.

    Even more they could offer nothing at all and leave you the customer SOL with a broken phone. This isnt cheap and is somewhate subsidized by those of us that havent broke our phones yet. You really think its a good idea to let you walk out the door with a unit that cost roughly $500 that they could sell to a new or upgrading customer? please dont take this as me being harsh im seriously asking you to think about this. Just because it is a big company with large profits and lots of employees doesnt mean they can hack it just for your case. Best Buy has stayed profitable in these rough economic times by making alot of cuts themselves, yet they are still letting you walk out the store with unpaid inventory, even if they use your deductible it may not fully cover the cost to replace the unit should something happen to it.
     
  22. dmodert66

    dmodert66 Well-Known Member

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    They would more than make up the cost by all of the people who BUY the INSURANCE but never use it...I've always had insurance on my phones and not once (knock on wood) have I ever had to use it...
     
    tlpalmer01 likes this.
  23. cconover

    cconover Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    Fair point, but I did consider that. To my mind here's what would make more economic sense, both short and long term: Keep a few phones of similar capability (perhaps a few of the Droid Eris for example) in inventory to be used as loaner phones based on the fact that they offer a service of covering the customer for accidents - after all, it is a form of insurance. They could keep the loaner phone in service as a loaner for a while, then take it out of circulation and sell it at a partially reduced rate for being open box while it's still in good shape. This has a few benefits: first, the customer feels like he's being treated fairly & respectfully by the store and the company, and feels like his money is being well spent from the first step and will be more likely to buy with Best Buy in the future. That takes care of my major complaint that the loaner is insufficient and an inappropriate solution for smartphone users. As I said before, I'd rather have had my phone repaired due to the uniqueness of its keyboard so long as I'd had a comparable loaner available. Had that been the case this thread would never have been started. The other benefit of that policy is that Best Buy is still able to recoup a good portion of its expense of providing the phone by offering it open box later. For customers who break their phone & don't have a protection plan, having an open box unit with minor wear may be very appealing.

    Tough economic times doesn't seem like a sufficient reason for insufficient customer service. If anything, these are the times when they should be working harder than ever at customer service to preserve their profits. If they really had the will to do so they could make the loaner program better without breaking the bank. It can't be impossible. Sure, they could have "offered nothing at all" and left me "SOL", but the fact is they DID offer something, so they assume the responsibility of living up to that, and a company dedicated to technology products and now in the business of mobile phones should understand the reality that for many people, their cell phone is not only the most important piece of electronic equipment they own but perhaps one of the more indispensable possessions they have these days, and provide customer service accordingly.

    Let's frame this another way: if you drive a 7 passenger vehicle because you have a large family & need that much space, and you get in an accident and your car is totaled, there's a good chance your insurance includes rental coverage - basically their equivalent to the loaner program. You're not going to settle for a two seater just because "that's what's in the inventory" - obviously that will never suit your needs, in a situation where the damaged item is an integral part of your daily activities & you can't do what you need to properly & effectively without the resources of a 7 seater available. It's neither the insurance company's, nor Best Buy's, place to judge whether I can go a few days anywhere up to a month without the equipment I paid for & am paying for protection & coverage on. By offering an inferior product that doesn't suit my needs with no alternative option, they're basically saying they have the right to dictate what's important & what's not important for me doing what I need to do. Say I'm being extreme or overreacting if you want, but that's the reality. They're in the business of service, that's what I'm paying for, and in the end perception equals reality. My perception is that Best Buy doesn't care enough about their mobile phone customers to fully serve their needs when they have an accident and need coverage that they're paying to get, so my reality is that I won't be buying another coverage plan, and possibly phone, from Best Buy mobile in the future.
     
  24. Fadelight

    Fadelight Well-Known Member

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    Your backstory sounds nearly identical to mine. One of my droids took a tumble down the stairs on May 25. I brought it in to BB, and after the crap about loaner phones and bla bla bla, they sent the phone out. I called them last week for an update, and they said they wouldn't know anything more about it until the first part of July.

    May 25 to July xx?

    As soon as I get my phone back, I am calling the bank and putting a block on the insurance.
     
  25. cconover

    cconover Well-Known Member This Topic's Starter

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    I think you may want to review the terms of the insurance agreement and if what other people have said about the "30 days & then a new phone" policy is true, it may be time to file a complaint with somebody like the Better Business Bureau and send a copy of the complaint letter to Best Buy. This kind of service is beyond unacceptable and borders on insulting when it comes to devices as crucial to many people's daily lives as phones & computers. A TV or stereo, sure I can live without it for a few weeks if need be. My computer, and above all my smartphone, I can't go more than about 48-72 hours without. I'm kind of ashamed to say that, but it's true - I need it for my business and without those two items I could be losing money. It's unacceptable for Best Buy to assume they have the right to decide otherwise.
     

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