Customer service at the Civic Nokia Care Centre

By 11 September, 2008 72

I transferred data via Bluetooth to my mobile phone (a Nokia Ngage QD), resulting in an out of memory message. Phone did not allow deletion of files to make room or to do anything else on the phone (giving a message saying that the phone was out of memory) turned phone off and now it wont start up again. Have researched this and it seems to be the “WSOD—White screen of death” which is a known bug in this series of phone. “WSOD is simply when your N-Gage’s internal memory gets so full it can no longer re-start itself.” The keywords WSOD and Ngage will return many, many results when search engined all saying the same thing.

Visited the Nokia Care Centre in Canberra City at lunchtime (there was a queue of people waiting there which was quite amusing)  and was told that there was no other way around it but to pay for repairs ($50), and that it was impossible for the consumer to fix it themselves. The guy that was serving me kept going on about how great this phone was and how he hadnt seen one for a while and then, unbelievably (I am still laughing/crying to myself) when it was established that the only way to fix Nokias own software fault (a really stupid one I might add) was to pay for it he asked for my name to book in the repair without even asking me whether I wanted to proceed and when I refused saying that it was ridiculous he starting talking about how Nokia has these new phones out that played Ngage style games, brought up the store in his browser and…launched into trying to sell me one…are these people trained to act like this? Would I have gotten the same response in another state?

Next stop was the Nokia customer support line which denied all knowledge of this problems existence (or to be more exact the person on the other end of the phone said so, I didn’t hear her typing to verify such things) and she kept repeating EXACTLY the same line to the point of hair pulling along the lines of – you have to take it into a Nokia Care Centre (the only one is in Canberra City and I already had paid them a wonderful visit) and pay for repairs while I was still trying to explain what the problem was.

I consider myself to be a reasonable person, but if you manufacture a phone and it wont even start because the memory is full and you, as a company, realised this fault in the PREVIOUS incarnation of the phone (the Nokia Ngage minus the QD) and did jack all to fix it, the LEAST you can do after the consumer has lost all of the precious data (all my dear saved messages and many of my contacts which save to the phone, luckily I backed some of these up) is to have the decency to treat your customer right and fix it so the phone actually works (I was even prepared before I went in to pay and let it slide if it was $20 or so to save the effort of going up against them as sometimes its just easier to let the big guy push you around). Let alone getting off the phone actually shaking from being spoken to so severely and hearing the blatent lies.

I am still in shock that the Canberra City Nokia “Care” Centre tried to sell me a new phone because unless he had a disorder and couldnt sense peoples emotions at all he must have been able to tell I was less than impressed at what Nokia had dished me up already.

Will try and pursue the matter, contacted the ACCC who recommended to try Fair Trading NSW (where Nokias portfolio is) under my statutory rights. Its all a bit scary as I have never been motivated enough to do such a thing before.

I recommend against purchasing a Nokia phone (I  realise I am just a little voice out there trying to speak out against something so big that I can’t fathom it) if this is the way they treat thier customers.

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72 Responses to Customer service at the Civic Nokia Care Centre
#1
Aurelius12:59 pm, 11 Sep 08

So you took a faulty piece of equipment in, and they offered to fix it. But you’d have to pay. And this is a problem?
You ever tried to take a car in for maintenance?

#2
Danman1:36 pm, 11 Sep 08

I agree Aurelius – NH – welcome to a world of built in redundancy.

I got an N80 from the innernet (Still in teh plastic – brand new) and it was DOA (It kind of worked but teh flex between the keys and screen was faulty)

I took it to that nokia place and they had it done overnight for about that cost.

I just filed it under “Some days you’re the statue, some days you’re the pidgeon”

That day I was the statue.

On teh other side of teh coin – I have never had a major problem with Nokia’s – in fact II just downgraded from a HTC TYTN fto a N95 – reason being that the HTC was too chunky and had too much stuff – I wanted a phone, not a bloody nanocomputer…

#3
BenMac1:47 pm, 11 Sep 08

I cracked the screen on my Nokia 6288 and took it to the Care Centre in the city. The person there looked up the serial number and found the phone was still in warrenty, so it didn’t cost me a thing to get fixed.

The only problem is they asked for my email address and said they would email me when it was ready for pick up. 1 1/2 weeks went by and nothing, so I gave them a call. It had been ready for a couple of days. Other than that, I found they were very good.

#4
NH1:57 pm, 11 Sep 08

I am more than happy to pay for repairs for things, I would much prefer to fix things than just buy a new one – old fashioned that way. If I did something to break it, if it wore out etc, all too happy to pay. But for a stupid software issue like this (a phone being too full so it wont start…) that is the companies fault in the first place and that they refuse to admit, I shouldn’t have to. I don’t want to be the statue.

@Danman: did you have a receipt or was it an ebay type dealio? Makes a good case to buy things from a retailer you can see.

#5
Loquaciousness2:04 pm, 11 Sep 08

The reason you would have had to pay is because you caused the problem. It’s called an OOM (out of memory) – all technological devices get them. You attempting to transfer too much data onto a device resulting in an OOM is not the fault of the manufacturer. It’s the fault of the person who tried to transfer too much data.

I know of not a single company that would give two hoots about your data. Which is why it’s common for most people and organisations to perform regular backups.

They might have treated you a little more politely – I’ll concede that – but being asked for a mere $50 for something that you caused is hardly out of the question.

Next time, check how much space you have before you start the transfer.

L

#6
tylersmayhem2:05 pm, 11 Sep 08

My suggestion is to write to Nokia management and escalate it upwards. The morons in the shop are geared to maximum profit – not problem solving. If you put a complaint in writing, the management really have an obligation to respond. Is this the shop you bought it from?

I have always used Nokia, and I’d never change. That said, the peabrains working in the “care centre” are not doing the Nokia name any favors.

I urge you not to back down and follow it up until they do the right thing. Also check more on the web for possible options.

#7
Danman2:06 pm, 11 Sep 08

NH – Ebay – but the saving I made was worth the dilemas.

#8
Loquaciousness2:08 pm, 11 Sep 08

NH said :

If I did something to break it, if it wore out etc, all too happy to pay. But for a stupid software issue like this (a phone being too full so it wont start…)

The reason the software won’t start is because it doesn’t have enough memory to launch. The reason it doesn’t have enough memory is become someone tried to transfer too much data on to it.

It’s certainly not a “software issue”. The software would work fine – if it had enough memory to launch …

L

#9
NH2:22 pm, 11 Sep 08

@Danman that’s not too bad then, glad it worked out OK.

@Loquaciousness usually a device would warn of such errors being likely or at least let you save to the memory card easily to aviod the issue, I’m pretty technically competent and I couldn’t find out how to do it without installing things onto it to do so. Would have deleted things off it if it let me do so.

@tylersmayhem thank you, writing to them is a good idea, I’ve heard letters by mail work better for that kind of thing…perhaps I should have done that before contacting Fair Trading…hmmm. True, the employees in the “care centre” definately are laughable representatives of the brand name, didnt buy it there.

#10
Aurelius2:27 pm, 11 Sep 08

NH – Nokia should sue your a** for publicly accusing them of “blatant lies” when they simply told you the problem was user error, and told you how to get it fixed. As for you shaking from being spoken to on a phone – grow up! Would it happen in other states? No. In less civilised cities, they’d have smacked you for being so pathetic. (And stolen your wallet if it were Melbourne)

#11
Loquaciousness2:31 pm, 11 Sep 08

NH said :

@Loquaciousness usually a device would warn of such errors being likely or at least let you save to the memory card easily to aviod the issue, I’m pretty technically competent and I couldn’t find out how to do it without installing things onto it to do so. Would have deleted things off it if it let me do so.

Possibly it should have, but that’s a design problem. Not a fault.

The product is suited to purpose, and was only rendered inoperable by user action. I can’t see that Fair Trading are going to find anything to go on here …

L

#12
Loquaciousness2:33 pm, 11 Sep 08

Loquaciousness said :

Would I have gotten the same response in another state?

Where’s tylersmayhem? I smell Canberra-bashing … !

L

#13
gargamel2:42 pm, 11 Sep 08

jakez said :

Previewed comment:

The reason the software won’t start is because it doesn’t have enough memory to launch. The reason it doesn’t have enough memory is become someone tried to transfer too much data on to it.

It’s certainly not a “software issue”. The software would work fine – if it had enough memory to launch …

L

For all of you lot saying this – are you for REAL?!?

This is an operating system fault. If you maxed out your computer’s hard drive do you expect Windoze (or whatever O/S you use) to give you the blue screen of death?

Seriously – have a think about what you’re saying.

I’m fine with it running slow as a dog – at least then I can go in and delete stuff helping it move a little quicker again – same thing ought to (and now does) happen with ‘smart phones’.

And no, I see very little difference between a phone’s operating system and a desktop computer’s o/s – they’re both made for PROFIT.

I don’t think it unreasonable for an O/S user to expect error traps for such an obvious thing this day and age. Having said that, smart phone designers (including Nokia) agree with that sentiment and have lifted their game.

As for Nokia Care City – yeah I feel your pain there too (though I must admit I still use Nokia devices). I remember a few years back, I went through 3 handsets of a particular model (the one that would power down whenever the o/s crashed – which was often – can’t remember what model it was). Took one hand set in one day to the Care centre and had it replaced (took 6 weeks…) – I was assured I was given a brand spanking new one. Weird thing though it was full of someone elses contacts and sms messages.

#14
johnboy2:53 pm, 11 Sep 08

For mine any competently designed data transfer system in this day and age should be automatically checking if there’s enough space before it kicks off the transfer.

Doubly so for a consumer device.

Sounds like a design failing and therefore the big N’s fault to me.

#15
p12:56 pm, 11 Sep 08

I’ve gotta agree with gargamel on this one. While I concede that there is a grey area a mile wide, Unless there was a big red warning all over the place that the memory shouldn’t be over filled, it should be their problem. In this day and age, a device such as a phone should be able to function in the hands of an inexperienced user, and so if the instructions say you can transfer data to it, you should be able to do this without bricking it.

#16
realityskin2:56 pm, 11 Sep 08

NH said :

that’s a design problem. Not a fault

Same thing honey.

#17
p12:57 pm, 11 Sep 08
#18
NH3:00 pm, 11 Sep 08

@gargamel thankyou, thankyou, thankyou. Your post has made my day I’m glad there are others who aren’t brainwashed. I was starting to doubt myself even though I know that on all accounts I am right. I’m not content to be pushed around and expect things to be a certain way when they are clearly wrong.

For those interested I’m looking at this under how long do statutory rights apply from the ACCC website (here’s the full thing: http://www.accc.gov.au/content/item.phtml?itemId=816328&nodeId=10e4a68ac0bf87477b314ab36945b38e&fn=Your%20consumer%20rights:%20mobile%20phone%20handsets.pdf):

When you purchase a mobile phone handset, it must:
• meet a basic level of quality and performance considering its price and description
• do what it is supposed to do

It is supposed to start up, yes. Despite receiving a new message that fills it up.

#19
Aurelius3:01 pm, 11 Sep 08

Try red-lining your Holden, then getting the local Holden dealership to fix it for free.
You’d get laughed at or smacked in the mouth, depending on whether you asked politely or not. Just because it’s some piece of electronic wankery, it doesn’t defy the laws of reality. NH, pay up and stop whining. And learn your lesson for next time.

#20
Aurelius3:04 pm, 11 Sep 08

NH, it’s supposed to do that when you purchased it. And it did.
That it dooesn’t do it after YOU BROKE IT aint Nokia’s fault.

#21
tylersmayhem3:05 pm, 11 Sep 08

NH: have you spoken to the mob you bought it off by any chance?

Loquaciousness: no, no – I’ll roll with this one.

#22
Loquaciousness3:07 pm, 11 Sep 08

gargamel said :

For all of you lot saying this – are you for REAL?!?

This is an operating system fault. If you maxed out your computer’s hard drive do you expect Windoze (or whatever O/S you use) to give you the blue screen of death?

Err … yes. I would.

Because the hard drive wouldn’t have the memory to continue operating. I’m sure I’ve already said it, it’s called an OOM (out of memory) error. And it’s quite common.

gargamel said :

jakez said :

And no, I see very little difference between a phone’s operating system and a desktop computer’s o/s – they’re both made for PROFIT.

Heh – both peterh and myself might have something to say about that … ;)

Those issues aside though, how does something being made for profit affect how they work?

L

#23
caf3:09 pm, 11 Sep 08

This is more like a Holden without a tacho.

And a 3000 rpm redline.

#24
Loquaciousness3:11 pm, 11 Sep 08

johnboy said :

For mine any competently designed data transfer system in this day and age should be automatically checking if there’s enough space before it kicks off the transfer.

Doubly so for a consumer device.

Sounds like a design failing and therefore the big N’s fault to me.

johnboy – I agree it’s a design fault. But design faults aren’t generally covered under warranty.

The phone did what it was supposed to do until a user action caused it to stop doing that. It’s not Nokia’s fault, no matter how you twist it around.

realityskin said :

NH said :

that’s a design problem. Not a fault

Same thing honey.

I apologise if my post made it seem that way.

The point I was trying to make is that poor design isn’t generally covered under warranty. Hell, my Vista laptop was poorly designed – that doesn’t mean I can take it back to Harvey Norman and get a refund on it.

L

#25
caf3:15 pm, 11 Sep 08

If it’s poorly designed to the point that it isn’t of merchantable quality, you sure can.

#26
Loquaciousness3:17 pm, 11 Sep 08

caf said :

If it’s poorly designed to the point that it isn’t of merchantable quality, you sure can.

When NH bought the thing, it worked.

L

#27
p13:22 pm, 11 Sep 08

The phone did what it was supposed to do until a user action caused it to stop doing that. It’s not Nokia’s fault, no matter how you twist it around.

My argument to this is that what the user did(ie transfer data) was included in the list of thing the phone should be able to do. So if the Holden dealer says that you can drive the car down the road, and after doing so it no longer works, then it doesn’t perform as advertised. If Nokia claims that connectivity is a feature, then they can’t then claim you are at fault for connecting too much.

#28
Loquaciousness3:25 pm, 11 Sep 08

p1 said :

My argument to this is that what the user did(ie transfer data) was included in the list of thing the phone should be able to do.

I doubt that Nokia would state that you can transfer as much data as you like. Go ahead! Cram another megabyte into it … it’s got special stretchy memory storage :P

L

#29
realityskin3:26 pm, 11 Sep 08

gargamel said :

Because the hard drive wouldn’t have the memory to continue operating. I’m sure I’ve already said it, it’s called an OOM (out of memory) error. And it’s quite common.

Can i have some of what you’re on !?!

#30
Aurelius3:31 pm, 11 Sep 08

NH, here’s a suggestion: Take Nokia to small claims court to enforce your desire for free repair. Then post to RiotAct to tell us when the hearing is. I could do with a bit of a giggle.

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