Rich Warren | Pursuit of Apple battery an uphill climb

Rich Warren | Pursuit of Apple battery an uphill climb

Put an "i" before any electronic device, and it becomes the Apple of your eye. Most Apple owners regard the rest of the electronics industry the way the Crusaders of the Middle Ages felt about the infidels. Thus, few people complain about the faults and flaws of Apple, except for the following reader who wrote this in response to my Jan. 28 iPhone battery replacement column:

"On Jan. 8, I took my iPhone to the Simply Mac store at the mall to replace the battery. I was told that I had to have an appointment and that in order to get an appointment, I had to contact Apple directly first. The store personnel also added that when I called, I should expect to be put on hold for as long as 50 minutes.

"I called Apple that day, and after a 40-minute wait, I spoke to representative Desirae Thomas. I explained the reason for my call, and she requested that I allow her access to my phone to check on the status of my battery. I agreed, and she conducted the check, taking several minutes of course, and promptly told me that my battery was in good shape. I explained that despite that report, I wanted my battery replaced. She explained that she needed to make an appointment with an Apple store to have that done. She indicated that the closest store was in Orland Park. I told her that was unacceptable and that there was a Simply Mac store here in town and that they were the ones who directed me to call Apple for an appointment. She said she would call the Simply Mac store right then to make an appointment. After a short while, she came back on line and indicated she was getting a busy signal. She said that she would try again later and then call me back the following Friday at 3 p.m. to confirm an appointment time. I expressed concern over that promise and explained that I had been promised so many times about callbacks that never occurred. She assured me that she was a senior representative and would make the call.

"At about 3:30 p.m. on that Friday, she did return the call and said that she would have a battery shipped to Simply Mac within three days. They would then call me to set up a time to have the battery changed out.

"At the end of the next week, Jan. 19, Jason at Apple called stating that the request for a battery for my phone had come across his desk and he wanted to know the situation. I explained all that had transpired. He said I had been told information that was not accurate.

"He stated that I needed to take my phone into the Simply Mac store to let them look at my phone and then they would order the battery at that time. I would be told the wait time would be dependent upon Apple. He said the current wait time is around the end of March early April before a battery could be sent out to an Apple store and that he didn't know the wait time for a Simply Mac store, but I should ask when I take my phone in.

"I called Desirae Thomas' phone that day and left a message for her to call me to explain her foul. Of course, I have not heard back. I have not followed up or taken any action since then."

My question to the reader is that if Apple said the battery did not require replacement, why he insisted on replacing it? As far as Apple, its representatives could have handled this much better, either by immediately denying a replacement or providing a guaranteed window for replacement. Considering the more than $900 billion market cap for Apple, it could afford to give our reader a $30 battery.

Rich Warren, who lives in the Champaign area, is a longtime reviewer of consumer electronics. Email him at hifiguy@mchsi.com.

Topics (2):Internet, Technology