T-Mobile Saves The Day When Samsung Won’t

We often write about oddball, 1-in-1,000 customer service horror stories. For most consumers, their feelings about a company is often related to how it responds to everyday concerns and complaints.

Take, for example, the story of Consumerist reader Amanda, who recently upgraded to a Samsung Galaxy S3. She really liked the phone, except for the fact that it took forever to charge. Even an overnight charging would only get her S3 up to around 50%. She assumed the problem was with the battery, but hadn’t had time to get to the mall to get that sorted out.

Then the other day she decided to add a Nexus 7 tablet to her device arsenal. Back at home, Amanda had the chargers for her two devices next to each other. Without realizing it, she’d used the Nexus charger to power up her S3.

“For the first time since I’ve had the phone, it charged to 100%, and in less than the three hours that I had it connected,” Amanda tells Consumerist. “It was a happy mistake, since I now know that the problem isn’t the battery, but the stock charger.”

She adds, “I figured that this was an easy fix for Samsung. I was wrong.”

The Samsung CSR told Amanda she could get a replacement charger, but only after she sent in her current one so Samsung could test it.

Amanda, who had owned Samsung phones before her S3, says she had received warranty and insurance replacements from Samsung in the past without being required to first send back the old device, so it seemed odd they would demand her old charger just to replace an accessory.

“He was very polite and apologetic, but couldn’t offer an alternative,” she says. “I asked to speak to his supervisor. He advised me that I would receive the same answer; that this was a company-wide policy and that none of the support staff has the ability to override it.”

That’s when Amanda called T-mobile, a company she’d stuck with over the years because she’d always received good customer service.

“At the very least, I knew they’d cut me a deal on a new charger,” she writes.

But rather than send her back to Samsung or ask her to ante up for a charger, the T-Mobile rep volunteered to overnight a new one free of charge.

“I had explained the situation to her in detail, citing that I don’t have another phone and am on call with my job 24/7,” says Amanda. “That was all I had to say. She apologized for the situation profusely (when it wasn’t even T-mobile’s problem) and offered this remedy which completely exceeded my expectations. I told her that she had truly made my day and that this is precisely why I’ve stuck with T-mobile through the years.”

So T-Mobile has kept Amanda as a customer — and impressed her to the point where she’s telling the world about it. Meanwhile, even though Amanda really likes her S3, Samsung’s overreaction to her minor request will probably be in the back her mind when she buys her next phone.