Emerging Tech

Broken stylus voids AT&T warranty


AT&T warrantyI came by this report at The Consumerist, where an irate customer, Rob, is complaining that AT&T voided his warranty over a broken stylus.

Excerpt of Rob's comments:

"I've got an AT&T 8525, and I've had it since about mid-June. It was a refurbished model, and the stylus end (the end that screws in) was a little wobbly, but very functional still. We've got a little problem with it now, though. That tip on the stylus (a cheap, $3 part) has broken off.

The phone is fine, but the stylus is broken. That in itself isn't a big deal, what sucks is that the stylus is still in the phone, and I have no way of retrieving it without opening the phone up and voiding the warranty.

So, what am I to do? I call AT&T to tell them the situation... and I'm promptly informed that the warranty on my phone is now void because of physical damage. What?! A $3 part that's shipped with the phone breaks, and now the phone's warranty is void?"

Read Rob's full letter.

Are there any TR members out there who have encountered such nonsense before from AT&T or any other carrier for that matter?

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

8 comments
845
845

Why anyone would want to do anyhting with att & t is beyond me.... Look at all those high cell phone bills people are racking up.

kurt.towsley
kurt.towsley

All cell phone carriers lack in the customer service department (with the huge exception of Virgin Mobile), but I think AT&Ts has consistently been the worst. When they originally went Cingular they dumped their pay-as-you-go customers if they did anything wrong (its normal for pay-as-you-go customers to let their balances expire, for example, and they built in fees and made their balance-adding cards difficult to obtain). I sold AT&T contract phones at work and they wouldn't help you fix or remedy anything. I'm amazed at the number of people who are still willing to use them, as for me I will sooner go with no cell phone rather than sign a contract with AT&T. And this story sounds just like every interaction I've ever had with anyone from AT&T.

rkendsley
rkendsley

I have an older Treo 600. Battery had died, but the AT&T store would not or could not replace it. The battery is only accessable by cracking the case. They obviously wanted to sell a new phone. Got on the internet, got a new battery and some cheap case cracking tools and did it myself. It does not surprise me that AT&T and DELL would do such things. No one wants to step up and do the RIGHT thing. As for the store helping you, good luck. My guess is they will not.

AppSupSpec
AppSupSpec

You can probably go to an AT&T/Cingular store and have them do it. I'm not with AT&T, but I'm sure they have support in their stores.

thinker999
thinker999

As far as expecting the sales droids in *any* cell store, much less AT&T, don't count on it. They're all 20-something fashion plates who don't know a darn thing besides how to watch the clock, how to run the register, how to answer the phone, how to sell you a phone, and how to tell you that it isn't covered by the warranty or the plan. They're good-for-nothing. They couldn't 'tech' their way out of a wet paper bag. Their phone support people are not native English speakers, either. It's great as long as you have no problems and nothing breaks. But, if either of those happens, you're scr00d. And it's not likely to change, as that's the way that AT&T *wants* it. They don't care because they don't have to; much as they didn't care when they were 'the only phone company in town.' Now they're big enough again that they figure that they can afford to pi55 off a certain amount of folks and it doesn't really hurt their bottom line all that much.. Helping yourself would appear to be your only possible fruitful avenue. After all, they've already told you that your warranty is void, and no doubt annotated that in your file. So, you've got nothing to lose by trying to get a cracking kit and fixing it yourself. If that doesn't work, there's always e-bay, or other third-party vendors for a new/different phone. Best of luck.

rbgbaggage1970
rbgbaggage1970

But AT&T problems and troubles don't begin with a warranty issue. My AT&T horror story started with a phone order that resulted in the wrong item. Went to the store to replace it for the right one and they neglected to put the sim card in the device. When I got back I called them they said they could mail it to me. I'm out of town in a hospital and in a wheel chair . I had to hire a taxi to take me and my device to the store to exchange the device, then hire the same taxi to pick up the device's sim card. I'll avoid them like the plague in the future so watch out.

paulmah
paulmah

Are there any TR members out there who have encountered such nonsense before from AT&T or any other carrier for that matter?

Menopausal
Menopausal

The company I used to work for had Dell's Premier Support contracts (dedicated phone lines and all). A customer had a USB port that had gotten damaged on a GX270- the infamous model that had the bad capacitors that blew up a large percentage of the motherboards on this model. Dell informed them that even if they had the bad capacitors on their mobo, they would refuse to replace it until the customer first replaced the mobo for the USB port damage, at the customer's expense. (The USB port was not covered because the damage was from a cord being kicked.) The customer declined because there were plenty of other USB ports on the board and they didn't need that one. Come ON- your company ships a million bad mobo's and you tell one of your most profitable customers that you're going to be a jerk about one of them?

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