Sunday, December 12, 2010

Samsung and me

I and samsung do not have a very long relation, but whatever relation we have is very flawed. I have been trying to "believe" in samsung products, in their "limitless" support. But samsung makes it difficult for me to "believe" in them.

Lets take case by case what has happened in the past 4 years. I got a samsung refrigerator and a washing machine around 3 years back. The life of the refrigerator was not even 2 years. Within 1.5 years the refrigerator was out of gas. For those who are new to the refrigerator business, I would like to make it clear that refrigerator does use some gas for cooling purposes. Now i have used 2 refrigerators in my lifetime of 25 years. The first one was a really old one "leonard". It ran for around 15 years - after which it lost its color and the gas. We sold it at a profit after using it for 15 years. The next one was "kelvinator". It is still running. It needed a gas change after around 6 years - that too because I moved to delhi and there was no one at home for around 6 months. But my dear Samsung refrigerator lost its gas in 1.5 years only. I had the notion that it would be one in a million cases. But after 6 months of gas change the compressor went for a toss. Thanks to Samsung, for even it does not provide reliable products it does provide a guarantee - due to which i could get the compressor change. But both times i had to pay for the gas change. If it goes on like this, by the time the refrigerator is 10 years old (if it does run for 10 years), the cost of maintenance would exceed the cost of the refrigerator. Bang - that's where samsung is making money...

My second experience was with the washing machine i had bought. I still have an LG washing machine at home - and it still runs like a charm. In fact i enjoy washing clothes. It is still as noiseless as it was when we bought it around 10 years ago. But Samsung washing machine - it sounds like an electric drill. We have to wash clothes only in the afternoon. If we try washing clothes in the morning, it disturbs the sleep of people in this home as well as those of the neighbours. The dryer keeps on running at full speed even if you shut off the machine and open the dryer lid. It seems that the brake pads are worn off. What happened to "high" safety standards (if any) of Samsung.

I had got a Samsung mobile around 3 years back. It started facing problems after 1 year and i had to get it resolved. But recently I got another Samsung mobile - and it was within a month that i realized that this purchase was a big mistake. Within a month, the mobile stopped charging. Now this is a very interesting story.

I went to the samsung service center in sector 18, noida. The service center has closed and there was no clue as to where it has shifted. Even the customer care were not aware that the service center was closed. I went to a samsung dealer in noida sector 18, to enquire about another service center - and he did not know any service centers. It seems that once the product has been sold, the dealers forget the customer. What happened to "customer is the king" motto?? So I moved to another service center - which is in sector 29, Noida. The scene there was humorous and frustrating. There was a person who had the exact similar problem with his samsung mobile. He has been trying to rectify his mobile for the past 1 month - but the service center were unable to rectify it. They never have the required parts.

I had to sit in queue and wait for my call. Once i was at the reception, i told him my problem. The "technician" checked my mobile and verified the issue. He then opened up the mobile completely and told me that i will have to deposit the mobile for 7 days to get it fixed. It seems that the charging jack was faulty. I was like hey - what about my data? and why 7 days? Well according to them my data would be safe and 7 days are required to get the new part and fix it. And there is no guarantee that the new phone will not be scratched. The service people we so adamant that they denied to take the phone if i wrote "no scratch" on the form.

That was when i called up the customer care again and he connected me to the manager - Mr Ranjit. I had to repeat my story 2-3 times - I spent around an hour on the phone - after which the manager told me that i do not need to deposit the phone - all I need to do is give a photocopy of my bill. They will arrange for the part and once it is here he will personally call me to get it fixed. I was about to say "liar liar!!!", but I let it go. After waiting for 3 days, i tried calling the service center - but no one picked up the phone. I tried calling again after 6 days - it is easier to get your calls picked up in government offices. Eventually I gave up. No point in running after them. Maybe 6 months down the line, when my phone is all used up and scratched, i will dump it in the service center and purchase a "non" samsung phone.

It is just a random thought, whether there is a problem between me and Samsung - that Samsung products do not suit me or it is a general case. For one thing, i never had a samsung TV. Onida and LG both have been running for more than 10 years now without a single issue. It makes more sense to provide better products rather than "limitless" service (troubles) for endless problems on inferior products.

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