A few weeks back, I wrote about a poor experience I had trying to get help for my broken iPhone 3G (the mute toggle switch broke). The staff was seriously hung up on their process to the point that they wouldn’t even let me show them where the process was broken.
This past weekend, I tried again, but with a different Apple store. This time I went to the Partridge Creek store in the Detroit suburbs. The experience was totally different.
From my side there was one important difference – I made an appointment for the Genius Bar. But note, I didn’t do it the last time, because the support links didn’t specify that I needed to make one first.
I went into the store early on Saturday, checked-in, showed the tech my problem, and within 10 minutes I was leaving the store with my replacement 16GB 3G. Easy.
The previous store could have asked me to wait and see if there was an opening, they could have looked to see if I was mistaken in saying the website did not indicate a need to make an appointment (when you approach through the support side rather than the specific store side), they simply could have said I’m sorry, but we aren’t able to help you today, but they didn’t. This store, however, helped we quickly and efficiently AND thanked me for coming into the store AND apologized for the inconvenience of my phone having been broken. I left the store feeling good about my experience there.
Note however, I learned they are supposed to replace like with like. They were not even supposed to change the color of my phone. There also was no option to pay a fee and upgrade the phone to the latest model. If they had not had a 16GB Black 3G in the store, I suspect they would have had to send my unit way and I would have had to wait for a re placement to be shipped.
Lessons Learned: Always make an appointment if you need service at an Apple Store. Also, each store may be managed a little differently. If you aren’t pleased with the result to obtain at one store, you may want to try a different store (if possible) or take up your concern with Apple support directly.