Samsung Wants To Patch Up My Defective Phone So It Can Break Again



Alex has a Samsung Galaxy SII on AT&T, and his phone has one of the common defects of that model: it likes to randomly shut itself down for no reason. Instead of casting him into smartphone replacement purgatory, AT&T and Samsung are instead trying to divert him into repair purgatory. His phone will be totally fine after their repair, AT&T assured him. It wasn’t. He turned to Samsung and made his case to them. They were willing to repair his phone, but not replace it.

Basically the Galaxy S II I bought had major issues starting in September. I brought it to ATT who told me they repaired it but they actually didn’t. After looking up the issue on the internet, it turns out that most, if not all of this model phone suffer from the same issue. While the phone can be physically repaired, any repair done can only be temporary to the a flaw with the design of the phone. I’d be in the same situation 6-9 months down the road.

I contacted Samsung via phone call and email at first on December 18th. Their response was there is nothing they can do, but they will let me sell my phone back so I have the opportunity to spend at least 300 dollars to replace a phone that only broke due to a manufacturer’s error. I found this completely unreasonable, so I contacted them on twitter. After enough questioning, I got the head of their social media team to respond to me. This whole process to even get this better response took about two weeks. After many exchanges Samsung agreed to repair it at their expense, but I found this to be unsatisfactory since it would still result in a phone suffering from the same issues 6-9 months down the line. I pressed the issue and they refused to budge.

Eventually my warranty lapsed which means that now AT&T will not replace my phone. If Samsung didn’t take an unreasonable length of time to properly respond to my issue I would have been able to have the option to trade for a same model phone from ATT. I may have been able to bother them enough to find me a different model phone, but that no longer matters since my warranty lapsed due to the negligent service I have received from Samsung.

On January 23rd, Consumerist posted an article about how one customer had a monitor replaced with a better model simply because he contacted them on Facebook. His situation wasn’t anything out of the ordinary and the amount of time at the repair center wasn’t extremely long. I tweeted at Samsung again asking if I could get the same treatment as this person. I feel that now [precedent] has been set and if I don’t get the same treatment, Samsung wouldn’t be doing even close to everything they can and I’d at least have an extra leg to stand on. Samsung only responded that they would repair my phone. They refused to acknowledge the other customer even when pressed further. I asked them multiple times why I am not getting equal treatment and never got a response about it.

Finally, I decided to email the office of the President explaining the situation. I received the same response. Samsung would be willing to repair my phone. They will not replace my phone. They won’t acknowledge the situation in the story about the person getting an upgraded replacement. I sent another email stating I would like a proper response and if not I would file a claim with the Better Business Bureau. They never responded so I filed a claim. It is case #[redacted]. Samsung America’s HQ is in New Jersey but for whatever reason they moved the claim to Texas.

I requested either a replacement phone or (since Samsung repeatedly told me that they, a phone manufacturer, don’t have the capability to replace a phone) $600 to buy a new phone and an apology for not treating me like a customer should be treated. Samsung responded with the following: [Punctuation left intact -Ed.]

“After reading your complaint several times to be absolutely sure of its content, I can say your issue is one of great concern to me We understand repair issues occur and in this case can be quite unfortunate. Samsung Telecommunications offers free of charge evaluations in order to ascertain the exact level of damage to your handset. Should the damage to your handset be determined covered under warranty a free of charge repair would be performed.The Samsung Standard Limited Warranty states that Samsung will repair or replace your product during the warranty period.Upgrades are provided exclusively by your service provider . Our offer of free of charge repair is still available to you by contact us at 888-987-4357.We apologize for any and all inconveniences.
Thank you”

In other words, they now aren’t willing to definitely repair it. They still didn’t address any of my concerns. They only apologized for any inconvenience caused and admitted no fault. I then filed a rebuttal explaining how Samsung didn’t address any of my issues. The Better Business Bureau closed the case siding with Samsung stating “This complaint is being closed as administratively judged resolved because the burden is on the customer to provide documentation or other substantive evidence to show that the company is in breach of their warranty agreement.”

They never asked me for any sort of documentation. The key issue here is that when a company puts out an entire faulty product line, any person experiencing these issues with no ties to the company would agree that the company should have the burden of replacing the faulty product.

The problem in this case is that you can’t compare customer service between different product lines in the same company.

How E-Mailing The Samsung CEO Helped Me Break Free Of Refurbished Replacements

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