Apple Store Accountability Question

in General Discussion edited January 2014
What's worse than being turned away after reserving and waiting in line for an iPhone then being turned away without getting one? Having the Apple Store disable your current phone's service in the process! This is a true story of going into the Apple Store with a working iPhone and leaving with it broken.

I'm writing an account of my latest experience trying to acquire an iPhone 4s at one of the Apple Stores in the LA area not simply out of frustration but rather because I don't know if I may garner some sympathy which could be shared by Management/Corporate at Apple. I'll do my best to keep complaints and my personal resentment to a minimum.

I arrived yesterday at the Apple Store to pick up a 32gb iPhone 4s that I had reserved at 9pm the night before. While I'm only halfway through my two-year contract, the iPhone 4 I got that contract under exactly a year ago was stolen, so I had to go back to using my old second-generation iPhone 3G. The battery charge can barely last 30 minutes of texting or web-surfing, and I can't download new apps, so I decided to ante up the $550 price for an "Early Upgrade" iPhone 4s. Upon arriving the store was fairly crowded with a line of people waiting outside who were waiting to pick and set up reserved phones. After waiting a little less than an hour, it was my turn, and the "Genius" assigned to me got to work. He seemed fairly new and hardly much of a techie, and constantly was asking his coworkers and supervisors how to do everything during each step of the process regarding setting up the phone, and was ESPECIALLY terrible when it came to reversing a mistake.

Everything was fine and dandy until it came time for payment. I gave him my Credit Card and he informed me it was declined. I said there must be a doesn't have a limit on it and the primaries on the card are my parents, who are quite affluent. He ran it again, and said it was declined and it definitely wasn't a problem on their end. I still had my doubts, as I didn't have much faith in his abilities as well as suspicions regarding those iPod-ish credit card scanners they carry around. I only have one credit card, and only $150 or so in my checking account (I'm a college student, after all), so I told him I'd make a few phone calls to try and sort it out.

I noticed on my 3G that I had no service with AT&T anymore. I asked him to restore my service and he was literally at a loss for what to do. Five minutes after asking around he returned with a phone for me to make the calls, then another one a few minutes later after the original one he gave me couldn't go long distance. After getting voicemail on my house phone and both my parents cell phones twice over, I was ready to admit defeat. All I wanted was to get out of that awful store and go cry in my room alone, but first I had to get the phone I walked in with restored.

This is where the real questionable service standards begin. After surveying his colleagues once again, his supervisor told him to call some number and get a support rep to change it back...I know because I was listening in and annoyed when he asked his boss, "So does like he have to do it or do I?" Disappointed, he talked on the phone with the rep for awhile...I couldn't follow much, but it seemed to me as though I had the iPhone 4s in both their and AT&T's system. Once my "Genius" friend thought he understood the directions he hung up the phone, put in some code and some numbers popped up on the screen. He told me to restart my phone and turn it back on with Wifi enabled and I'd have service again. I tried it, and it didn't work. He said I probably just had to wait a few minutes, but I knew what was coming. After about five minutes of waiting and restarting over and over he told me that I could leave and it would be restored soon. I asked what if it didn't, and he told me that I would need to go to the AT&T store. He then left to attend to other customers. I went outside to the parking garage, and tried using my credit card to pay for parking. It worked.

To summarize, after getting my phone stolen, reserving a phone and arranging for a friend to drive me thirty minutes each way to the store, then waiting an hour at the door to get the phone, I was turned away based on what I'm certain was an error on their part regarding payment. Had it just been that, I would've been upset but likely moved on quickly. What makes this especially ridiculous is that based on that error on THEIR part, I lost service on my old cell phone, which they failed and in a way refused to restore. I can't believe I managed to go to the Apple Store for an upgrade and leave with no working cell phone at all.

Now I know that while I may believe this Apple Fail warrants a free replacement iPhone 4s on my current two year plan without eating my upgrade, or at least some major discount, do you? What should I expect? Am I wasting my time, am I over reacting, or do I have a case and your blessing? Thanks for taking the time to read this and to write a response.


  • Reply 1 of 1
    Complain to who you need to complain to get your stuff fixed and move on. Incompetence is encountered every day in all our lives. Looking for a sympathy in a forum that has no relation to Apple is just pissing your time into a black hole.
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