Customer trapped in Apple & FedEx blame game over lost Apple Watch

Posted:
in Apple Watch
An Apple Watch owner who wanted his device repaired had trouble, after Apple and FedEx both refused to take the blame for a missing parcel.




Dedham, Massachusetts resident Vic Son was stuck in a battle between FedEx and Apple over who should take responsibility for a lost-in-transit Apple Watch. A problem that could've been fixed earlier by Apple's customer care.

In February, Son had a new Apple Watch sent to his home as an AppleCare replacement, since it had stopped charging after four months. Under the arrangement, Son would have two weeks to return his old Apple Watch to Apple, or face being charged for the replacement.

The man followed Apple's instructions, using the provided materials and label, and dropping it off at his local FedEx facility. However, the Boston Globe reports he was charged $328 by Apple on his credit card.

Son called Apple, and after two hours and four transfers, got hold of a representative identified as Jeremy. The rep told him that the Apple Watch didn't arrive with Apple, and so a charge was applied.

Jeremy offered Son a FedEx tracking number to try and fix the problem, insisting that it was something the customer had to fix. A second call then followed to FedEx, with a 90-minute hold time and more dissatisfaction.

FedEx said it would investigate, but only after Son filed a claim. Days later, FedEx said "we must respectfully decline your claim," as an addendum was on the contract for the delivery "stating you agreed to not file claims resulting from transportation services provided by FedEx," the delivery firm said, with little other detail.

After hitting a brick wall, Son got hold of Apple again, with Jeremy insisting he had to deal with FedEx directly. Son did so, and eventually discovered the addendum was an agreement by Apple to hold FedEx unaccountable for lost packages heading to Apple.

Son then tried to get hold of Apple, but wasn't called back. "Apple and FedEx kept pointing the finger at each other, and I was caught in the middle," said Son. "I felt like the ball in a ping-pong match."

Son contacted the Boston Globe about the stalemate, who contacted FedEx about the problem. FedEx then gave Son an explanation that was more understandable, as well as advising that Apple had to file the claim since it was all organized on Apple's account.

The reporter emailed Apple, only for a manager from the Corporate Executive Relations team to contact Son directly. The manager said Jeremy was wrong in directing Son to contact FedEx, and credited the $328 charge back to the customer.

Following apologies, Son pressed to see if Apple could do something to make up for the issue. When asked what he wanted, Son said "An iPad Pro Plus," before agreeing to a pair of AirPods as compensation.

Read on AppleInsider
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 38
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,908member
    Companies do this all the time but in this situation it’s obviously FedEx’s fault. Looks like an employee stole the package. 
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 2 of 38
    maltzmaltz Posts: 325member
    This happened to me with Amazon, a third party seller, and a lost return by UPS.  Though it was obvious to me that there was no reason for me to talk to UPS - I was not their customer, the third-party seller was.  But the third-party seller, after stringing me along for a month or so, finally sent me off to file an Amazon A-Z claim.  That eventually worked, after some back and forth explaining the situation, and that I had already tried to resolve with the seller, but it seemed weird to me that the third-party seller would WANT me to do that.  Isn't that a black mark on them?

    I'm actually concerned it's about to happen again.  I dropped off an item for return with UPS recently and Amazon already issued the refund, but the tracking number still says "label created" almost a week later.  The instructions said that UPS would "pack and ship" the item, so I didn't box it back up.  It sounded like it worked like their Kohl's drop offs.  Sigh...
  • Reply 3 of 38
    jamnapjamnap Posts: 22member
    Years ago I sold an Apple Thunderbolt display to Buy Back World. They sent me a FedEx ship label. The tracking showed the shipment vanished at FedEx New Jersey.  After several months and fighting with FedEx and BBW, I did received full trade/in price from BBW.  Thieves abound within FedEx, especially in NJ
    flyingdpBeatsscstrrf
  • Reply 4 of 38
    chadbagchadbag Posts: 1,650member
    Thieves abound everywhere.  I ran an online store and took an order for an expensive package deal (over 1600$).  I normally shipped Fedex Ground but this customer wanted UPS COD.  I sometimes had customer for whom Fedex service in their area was non existent or sucked so was used to the occasional request for UPS.  I shipped the package fully insured by UPS.  The package disappeared after being scanned at the end station package sorting facility. 

    It was obviously an inside job.  I couldn’t get ahold of the customer once it disappeared and I never heard from him again.  He had the tracking number and either he or his accomplice watched for it and stole it.  UPS paid the insurance and I tried to get them interested in the details since it was obviously an inside job but they weren’t interested.  

    ——

    in this case in this article, if I were Mr Son, I would have counted up all the hours spent on hold or otherwise spent trying to jump through hoops and explained to the Apple Corp relationship guy how many hours had been wasted and what my normal pay rate was…   Let them make an offer against that. 
    edited May 9 scstrrf
  • Reply 5 of 38
    MadbumMadbum Posts: 74member
    Ummmm

    isnt this what happens with every lost package ? Some back and forth and resolution?

    hammeroftruthllamarandominternetperson
  • Reply 6 of 38
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,015member
    Beats said:
    Companies do this all the time but in this situation it’s obviously FedEx’s fault. Looks like an employee stole the package. 
    Did you read the article?  Sure, FedEx lost the package, but it was Apple that gave the wrong advice and made the customer ring around in circles to get a refund they were entitled to.


    Seems very odd that Apple would agree to not hold FedEx liable for packages heading to Apple on Apple's account.  I wonder where that came from.
    muthuk_vanalingamronnscstrrfbloggerblog
  • Reply 7 of 38
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 2,909member
    This makes Apple look bad, even to me. I can't defend Apple here.
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 8 of 38
    You can always dispute the charge with the bank that underwrites the credit card.
    anantksundaram
  • Reply 9 of 38
    jdnyusjdnyus Posts: 3member
    Sadly, this is what Apple's customer service has become.  Bad, all around.  I remember the days when you could call customer service  and get a caring human being.  It's not THAT long ago.  One of Apple's selling points was its customer service.  Now, as described, you have to press numerous buttons, and still often don't end up in the right place.  Or, worse, the chat lines - they ask you 15 questions over a 10 minute period, only to tell you that the chat doesn't handle your issue and you need to call.  Or that you reached the wrong chat line and they transfer you to another one that says they are not the right place.  The worst.  I had a similar experience to what you describe when I mailed them a laptop I was trading in.  Fedex (or UPS...I forget) said Apple got it - tracking showed it delivered to the right address.  Apple said they didn't have any record of receiving it.  It took me numerous calls with idiots on the other end who did nothing more than read me what appeared to be prepared statements, trying to just get rid of me rather than helping.  Finally, I got someone who put in a "ticket" and they found it and refunded my money.  Apple is all about profit and it doesn't give a ^%$* about customers anymore.  Even their normal return period - its way too short.  Say what you will about Amazon and Bezos, but Amazon makes returns easy, regardless of the price of the item.  I love my iphone/ipad/MBPs, and they rarely need service. But, if I could get the equivalent from another company that doesn't stick it to the customers at every opportunity, I would switch in a second.  Apple knows that they can treat us like garbage and we will still buy their products, and they act that way. 
    lkruppwilliamlondon
  • Reply 10 of 38
    genovellegenovelle Posts: 1,356member
    This makes Apple look bad, even to me. I can't defend Apple here.
    A work from home support staff who can’t wave over their supervisor to ask a question while the customer is on the phone. 
    Beatspscooter63llama
  • Reply 11 of 38
    flydogflydog Posts: 1,093member
    You can always dispute the charge with the bank that underwrites the credit card.
    Dispute what?  This was a warranty repair four months after the purchase.  Read the article next time. 
  • Reply 12 of 38
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,015member
    flydog said:
    You can always dispute the charge with the bank that underwrites the credit card.
    Dispute what?  This was a warranty repair four months after the purchase.  Read the article next time. 
    Another one who isn't reading the article properly.
    The man followed Apple's instructions, using the provided materials and label, and dropping it off at his local FedEx facility. However, the Boston Globe reports he was charged $328 by Apple on his credit card. 

    Son called Apple, and after two hours and four transfers, got hold of a representative identified as Jeremy. The rep told him that the Apple Watch didn't arrive with Apple, and so a charge was applied. 

    ronnscstrrfpscooter63
  • Reply 13 of 38
    flydogflydog Posts: 1,093member
    jdnyus said:
    Say what you will about Amazon and Bezos, but Amazon makes returns easy, regardless of the price of the item.  I love my iphone/ipad/MBPs, and they rarely need service. But, if I could get the equivalent from another company that doesn't stick it to the customers at every opportunity, I would switch in a second.  Apple knows that they can treat us like garbage and we will still buy their products, and they act that way. 
    You may want to review that Amazon return policy once more. Amazon only accepts returns of computers and tablets if they are unused in an unopened box or if they arrived defective, and reserves the right to charge a restocking fee. Except for Amazon devices of course, which can be returned for any reason at all.
    ronnwilliamlondon
  • Reply 14 of 38
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,001member
    Madbum said:
    Ummmm

    isnt this what happens with every lost package ? Some back and forth and resolution?

    No, most don’t result in going to a local major newspaper who can then pressure a response from the parties responsible.
    muthuk_vanalingamronnscstrrfbloggerblograndominternetperson
  • Reply 15 of 38
    mwhitemwhite Posts: 283member
    jdnyus said:
    Sadly, this is what Apple's customer service has become.  Bad, all around.  I remember the days when you could call customer service  and get a caring human being.  It's not THAT long ago.  One of Apple's selling points was its customer service.  Now, as described, you have to press numerous buttons, and still often don't end up in the right place.  Or, worse, the chat lines - they ask you 15 questions over a 10 minute period, only to tell you that the chat doesn't handle your issue and you need to call.  Or that you reached the wrong chat line and they transfer you to another one that says they are not the right place.  The worst.  I had a similar experience to what you describe when I mailed them a laptop I was trading in.  Fedex (or UPS...I forget) said Apple got it - tracking showed it delivered to the right address.  Apple said they didn't have any record of receiving it.  It took me numerous calls with idiots on the other end who did nothing more than read me what appeared to be prepared statements, trying to just get rid of me rather than helping.  Finally, I got someone who put in a "ticket" and they found it and refunded my money.  Apple is all about profit and it doesn't give a ^%$* about customers anymore.  Even their normal return period - its way too short.  Say what you will about Amazon and Bezos, but Amazon makes returns easy, regardless of the price of the item.  I love my iphone/ipad/MBPs, and they rarely need service. But, if I could get the equivalent from another company that doesn't stick it to the customers at every opportunity, I would switch in a second.  Apple knows that they can treat us like garbage and we will still buy their products, and they act that way. 

    I had to send in my Airpods Pro still under warranty a couple months ago and had no problem sending them to them and getting them back to me. All the people at Apple I spoke with was great so in my case there service was Great...
    JaiOh81lkruppwilliamlondonscstrrfbloggerblog
  • Reply 16 of 38
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,908member
    crowley said:
    Beats said:
    Companies do this all the time but in this situation it’s obviously FedEx’s fault. Looks like an employee stole the package. 
    Did you read the article?  Sure, FedEx lost the package, but it was Apple that gave the wrong advice and made the customer ring around in circles to get a refund they were entitled to.


    Seems very odd that Apple would agree to not hold FedEx liable for packages heading to Apple on Apple's account.  I wonder where that came from.

    I did. 

    Still doesn’t change the fact a lot of companies blame each other. The package was never found so most likely someone stole the Watch.

    Which part are you arguing?
    anantksundaram
  • Reply 17 of 38
    flydog said:
    You can always dispute the charge with the bank that underwrites the credit card.
    Dispute what?  This was a warranty repair four months after the purchase.  Read the article next time. 
    As long as he has proof that he followed the instructions such as having a receipt/tracking number for his RMA he can just dispute the charge with the bank. The bank will then investigate the charge. If Apple and Fed Ex can’t find the package it is their problem.
    williamlondonbeowulfschmidt
  • Reply 18 of 38
    tokyojimutokyojimu Posts: 511member
    crowley said:
    Seems very odd that Apple would agree to not hold FedEx liable for packages heading to Apple on Apple's account.  I wonder where that came from.
    I’m guessing Apple gets a very very good price with FedEx for agreeing to self insure the packages instead of putting that burden on FedEx.


    hammeroftruthbloggerblog
  • Reply 19 of 38
    BGnATCBGnATC Posts: 16member
    This happened to me recently with the charging case for a set of Powerbeats Pro, except that everything went smoothly. FedEx lost my AppleCare return, and after waiting a few weeks for the delivery to complete, I eventually called Apple to see what I should do. After some explaining and a week or two of waiting, Apple refunded my $99 security deposit with little fuss. I had all the tracking info, of course, and was able to prove where and when I left the return with FedEx. 

    It seems that this is happening often enough that their reps are catching on to the proper way to handle this. 
    edited May 9 scstrrf
  • Reply 20 of 38
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,015member
    Beats said:
    crowley said:
    Beats said:
    Companies do this all the time but in this situation it’s obviously FedEx’s fault. Looks like an employee stole the package. 
    Did you read the article?  Sure, FedEx lost the package, but it was Apple that gave the wrong advice and made the customer ring around in circles to get a refund they were entitled to.


    Seems very odd that Apple would agree to not hold FedEx liable for packages heading to Apple on Apple's account.  I wonder where that came from.

    I did. 

    Still doesn’t change the fact a lot of companies blame each other. The package was never found so most likely someone stole the Watch.

    Which part are you arguing?
    That the entire point of the article, that this guy was given the run around, was down to Apple giving the wrong advice.  So it's not "obviously FedEx's fault".  It's most likely their fault for losing the Watch in first place, but "package gets lost" isn't a news article, Apple erroneously passing the buck and pissing off a customer is.
    scstrrfmuthuk_vanalingambloggerblogdewmeMplsPfastasleep
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