I've visited the Apple Store in Fresno, CA twice recently.
The first time was when my Macbook battery started failing miserably...I bought the laptop in October 2006, and by October 2007 it was shutting down randomly when not plugged in, and when not shutting down, I'd get maybe an hour and a half of battery life. I found a page on Apple.com explaining that first generation Macbooks had extended warranties for free because of the defects, and if the update didn't solve the defect issue, to take it to an Apple store for support. So I scheduled an appointment.
I arrive at the so-called "Genius Bar" and speak with a "Genius." I explain that at about 270 charge cycles, my laptop began acting up, and I explained the symptoms. I explained that I saw on the Apple site that there was a recall on the batteries. (I mistakenly called it a recall).
"Genius": *gives me a strange look* I haven't heard of a recall.
Me: It's on the Apple site, that the first generation Macbook batteries have been extended...
"Genius": *verifies my Macbook serial number and all that, and goes in the back, comes out a few minutes later* That recall is for Powerbook G4 batteries...
Me: Oh, maybe it's not a recall exactly, but Apple is supposed to be replacing batteries for Macbooks.
"Genius": Well I don't know exactly what it is, and if you heard about it on the internet...
Me: I saw it on the official Apple site.
"Genius": On the discussion board...? You can't exactly trust them.....
Me: No, the Apple site, not the discussion board.
"Genius": *hands my Macbook back to me* Well, if you could find it and show it to me.
Me: Okay. *spends two minutes searching and finds it* Here. *shows it to him*
"Genius": *look at it for 10 seconds* Oh okay, I'll replace it. But it's not a recall....
Me: Okay, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to be confusing....Thank you for replacing it.
"Genius": *replaces it, and all is well*
All that irked me is that he didn't really seem to be interested in looking into it himself, but I was thrilled to have my battery replaced.
Second story, more irritating:
My husband's iPod has been periodically skipping certain songs...it loads them for a second, then skips...in particular, several FictionJunction YUUKA songs, amogst others. I make an appointment for the Apple store, believing the iPod is under warranty, and even if it isn't, it could be helpful anyway. I at least knew that my husband did a hard reset on it.
Me: *explains situation to a different "Genius" than before, shows him example of problem and explains the hard reset solution that was already tried*
"Genius": *looks up the serial number* It seems that the iPod is no longer under warranty...so, all I can really say is to try a full restore.
Me: Oh, I thought he had Apple care on it...I guess not. I don't know if he's tried the restore yet. *Thanks him and leaves*
I call my husband who says he thought he got Apple care for it, but then doubted himself. Later at home, he looks up the warranty himself on Apple.com.
He did have Apple Care on it that doesn't expire until December 2008.
Are all Mac Geniuses this lazy?
Third story, Microsoft related:
My husband's Xbox360 experienced the red ring of death in November, as it had a broken DVD drive. Microsoft replaced it without a hitch, and all was good, until earlier this month. Now there is no video, and it is related to the port on the console. Microsoft has extended the Xbox360 warranties to 3 years for the red ring of death, and according to them as well, general hardware failures. First, I called MS support and the tech, who didn't understand nor speak English well, said it would cost $99 to fix, as the console was a month out of the year- warranty. (It was purchased in Nov 2006, but my husband didn't receive it for Christmas until, well, Christmas day 2006.) I didn't know any better about the extended warranty, but I told the tech I'd have to ask my husband about it since he didn't have to pay $99 for the DVD drive fix. Husband does research and discovers the warranty extension. He calls MS support back, who states that the port issue is not a general hardware failure and the warranty does not cover it, so it's $99 or nothing. He emailed MS support, who agreed with the phone support tech. There's even a chance that the port was damaged when the drive was replaced, but MS still refuses to fix it so far. This is very disappointing...what would you classify this as besides a "general hardware failure"? I have no idea.