Let me please preface this with the statement, I am a bit of a fan of your equipment. Currently I own the following mobile devices:
- Samsung J1
- Samsung J2
- Samsung S7 Edge
- Samsung S8 Plus
- Samsung Note 8
- Samsung Tab S3 LTE
- Samsung Gear S3 Frontier
A few weeks ago, my S7 Edge which my Mum uses started dropping calls. I mean a lot of calls, but only when in fringe coverage areas. My Mum complained a lot. I did what I’m sure most Sons would do, I promptly blamed the user. Sorry Mum. Failing that I then blamed the network. Sorry Vodafone.
I found that my S7 Edge had developed a problem. Firstly, I factory rest it figuring that would probably do the trick, but that did not help. Then I again blamed the network, after all coverage area breaths and over summer Northland gets a pretty big influx of people. Unfortunately, this did not wash with the end user, my Mum.
Still hesitant to declare a hardware fault I gathered my Samsung gear and war drove fringe coverage with multiple Samsung devices on the same network holding calls to the same number. The results were clear, the S7 Edge would drop the call repeatedly while the other phones would keep the call without fail. I could no longer blame anything else except the S7 Edge.
I swapped Mum across to one of my other Samsung devices and set about getting the S7 Edge fixed. From the outset I knew it would potentially be a difficult issue to get resolved so decided not to take it back to the retailer (Noel Leeming, Kerikeri) and instead fly it down to Auckland to take it to Samsung Service Plaza directly.
After 2 days I called to check on the device and was told those 3 horrible words that strike fear in techs around the globe, “No Fault Found”. I explained to the guy on the phone that there must be some mistake, I know the device is faulty! I explained my method of testing to which I was told, No Fault Found. I asked to speak to the technician, so I could see how he reproduced the low coverage conditions however I was told that It was simply not possible to speak with the technician as he had not been trained to talk to customers!
I asked how I could escalate the issue and was directed to the 0800 Samsung call centre.
I called the call centre and explained at length my issue and the helpful lady called the service centre and then advised me that I had unfortunately been given the wrong information and the phone is actually still being tested so not to worry.
The next day I received a call advising, wait for it… No fault found, and I could collect my device. So, I embarked on another trip of ground hog day with a call to the 0800 number, to repeat my story. I was then transferred to a very polite guy who was an escalation contact and he could totally see my issue but has no choice but to accept the technicians report showing no fault found. He repeated many times that he would like to be able to do more but he is just in a call centre. At this point felt very much like I was playing chess with a pigeon. (if you haven’t come across that phrase before google it, you can thank me later ðŸ˜Š )
So here I am, out of options other than going to collect my device and I expect will need to pay a no fault found fee only to still have a $1400 phone that is only reliable in the city.
As an engineer I understand that faults like this would be a nightmare to reproduce, you would need some pretty specialised equipment to simulate the low coverage environment on the particular UMTS band in question, it would not be easy. I get customers are probably wrong more often than they are not.
So Samsung, if you are reading this, please get in touch, I don’t expect a new phone or anything special,
I would happily accept repaired device, a refurbished device or even a substitution to a lower model I just want to get a working phone.
A self-confessed Samsung fanboy who is pretty frustrated.
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