Vince sent a love letter to Y.K. Kim, the head of Samsung USA. No, he doesn’t have a crush on Mr. Kim. He is deeply in love with his Galaxy S3, and shared that love with the regional CEO of the company that brought it to him. Only his love has a problem. A pink discoloration on the screen. He was brokenhearted, and also doubtful about his future plans to buy an S4.
We don’t normally recommend telling long, personal stories as part of an e-mail to a CEO, but sometimes it does work. We pick up Vince’s story as he explains what went wrong with his S3.
February 6th, 2013 is the day that it started to fall apart. I knelt down to tie my shoes, like every normal day, and found my S3 was not sitting right in my pocket and was applying light pressure to my leg. At the time I didn’t think much of because it was such a minor pressure that it couldn’t have had any impact to the phone. I was wrong. I received an email and pulled my phone out to see a pink discoloration forming near the bottom of the screen. Thinking it was a software glitch I rebooted my phone. Did not fix it. It continued to expand up the screen over the course of the evening. By 11 pm on the 6th it had completely turned my display pink and a dark blue area at the bottom of the screen has started.
The next day I drove to my carrier’s service center and showed them the phone as well as the 3 attached images. The service rep was taken aback, she had never seen this before as there was absolutely no signs of physical or water damage (I never dropped, mishandled or used my phone near water at any point). She concluded the same thing I did, something was wrong with the display and should be covered under warranty.
I waited 2 weeks for a call from the service center, they discovered that the panel had a hairline crack in it and ruled it as physical damage and charged me $250 to replace the screen. At this point I was incredibly annoyed. This was the most expensive device I have ever purchased!
As the weeks progressed I found myself afraid of using the phone in day to day life, I couldn’t afford to have it damaged again so I started leaving it at home and using one of my older devices. How can I use a device that has such a low tolerance to daily use? Today I’m writing this because I’ve had enough of it, I can’t even look at it and not feel angry. I now HATE the device and it pains me because I loved it.
I’ve searched the internet and found I’m not the only one to have this problem. Many have just given up on Samsung and have moved to the Nexus 4 or other.
With the Galaxy S4 coming out shortly, and it being built with the same components (frame and shell) as the S3, only thinner I’m afraid of upgrading to it. I really hate this place I’m at with this device because it is the only one that I liked to use! I’ve tried the HTCs, Motorolas and Sonys and have not been able to find a replacement to my S3.
What can I do? I’ve lost my faith in Samsung Mobiles Customer service and build quality.
I’m including the email address to the Consumerist as a CC.
Only a few days later, he heard back from Kim’s office. They offered to pay for his repair.
Dear Vincent [redacted],
Please accept our sincere apologies for the inconvenience you may have experienced.
At Samsung, we take pride in ensuring our customer’s satisfaction. Upon thorough review of the situation, we would like to offer you a refund for your repair. Can you please send your work order and receipt of the repair to [redacted]?
We deeply value your loyalty to Samsung and are committed to providing you with the highest level of service simply because our customers deserve the very best. If you have any further questions or comments regarding this matter, please feel free to discuss it with us at [redacted].
Yours in service,
I forwarded them the work order and my receipts showing the total cost. Today I received a check from Samsung for the full cost of the replacement screen. Very happy with the level of customer service Samsung has provided. From my searching, this is an issue that many people with the GS3 have had and have had to pay out of pocket.
I have attached the images of my device and the check I received.
Mr. Kim is the CEO of Samsung USA, and many of our international readers write to him even though he doesn’t oversee their region. He is in charge of Canada, though, which is where Vince lives.