Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Apple drive replacement program notification error sends blogger over edge

Update: I got an unexpected Apple email requesting I send a scanned receipt and bank information to get my iMac drive replacement refund. I thought I'd solved this problem two weeks ago!

So I wrote a snarky blog post (below) and replied with a crabby comment. About 30 minutes later I got a f/u email:
Dear Apple Customer,
The prior communication you received from Apple stating the need for additional information was in error.
We completed your refund for a hard drive replacement as part of the iMac 1TB Seagate Hard Drive Replacement Program.
Refund Amount: 281.25
Credit Memo Number: 111111
Case ID: 11111
Follow Up Number: 111111
You will receive your refund in four-to-six weeks.
So it was a mistake. I wonder how many customers got this, and how many are as cranky and post-election sleep-deprived as I am (and my team won, imagine how cranky I'd be if I voted GOP).
Original title: Apple's defective drive replacement program: lousy customer service

I wasn't delighted that Apple took a year to admit that my iMac's hard drive was defective, but I was glad to apply for a refund for the replacement I purchased. I received an email asking for bank details, which I sent on.

Today Apple sent me another email asking again for the bank details I'd already sent and for a scanned receipt for a repair that was done by Apple at their store over a year ago:
Dear Apple Customer,
Product Serial Number(s): XXXXXX
Case ID: 11111
Follow Up Number: 1111
Thank you for submitting a refund request. We need a repair receipt and banking details to complete your refund.
Please contact the service center that replaced your hard drive and obtain a receipt, if you do not already have it.
Reply to this email and attach a scan of the receipt. Do not change the subject line.
This is lousy customer service.

Update: I asked on Apple's discussion board if others had run into this problem. The post was removed about twenty minutes later, and I received this note:

Apple removed your post titled, "iMac 1TB drive replacement program: Apple gets nasty about refund," because it contained the following:
Non-technical posts
Non-constructive rants or complaints
Well, no complaint there - 'nasty about refund' wasn't the smartest subject line. Still, that was a pretty fast deletion by the standard of past years.


jasoninlex said...

So is it true that you have to give Apple you bank account and routing number to get a refund? I'm in the same situation right now. I just had my hard drive fail in my iMac and a couple weeks later I got an email from Apple saying that there was this replacement program going on. So I contacted Apple to get a refund for the hard drive that I already replaced with my own money. They said that someone else would have to contact me in a couple of days, so I waited and then got this email requesting my bank information to get my refund. I was too afraid to give them my bank details because it felt like one of those scam emails from Nigeria. I went to the Apple store to ask some of the geniuses there, and they said that Apple would never do such a thing, but then another genius spoke up and said yes they are doing that for the hard drive program...

I still haven't given them my information yet because I'm trying to make sure this isn't a scam...

John Gordon said...

Yeah, weirdly and stupidly this is indeed what Apple is doing. An extremely bad practice.

In fact, they didn't do the direct deposit, they sent me a check. So they really didn't need that information and shouldn't have requested it.