Apple On Line Store Has Problems.

Apple On Line Store Has Problems.

I ordered a new Mac Book Pro for my self with apple care and a iTouch for my daughter.  My E-mail notifications for this order came to be a bit weird.  The order was cut into two. The iTouch was on one order while the laptop was on the second.  The iTouch arrived extremely fast, with gift wrapping that I do not remember ordering, and was charged $5.  The iTouch qualified for a rebate but I never was notified how to get the rebate.  I called customer service and was told to got to a web site and that process went really smooth.

I thought I had paid for expedited shipping for the laptop but the iTouch came extremely fast while the laptop took way too long to arrive.  It appeared to me that they applied the expedite shipping, $18, to a $100 iTouch and NOT a $2,487.00 laptop.   That made my daughter real happy but I am paying the bill, they did not know that, and I had to wait.

I never got any E-mail or snail mail or package for the Apple protection plan.  I finally called two months later and was told that indeed the tech support computers did show that I had paid for the plan.  I was told that a package should have been send with a certificate and a CD inside.  Their records showed the package was sent.  Well, I am still waiting for it for over two months.  I had to call another number and was told that they would send a certificate but no CD!  I would have to go to a web site and download the software and burn my own CD!  Incredible.  I went to the web site and it did not work.  I called Apple technical support again and they approved sending me a CD.  That was cool.  I was given another web site address, a longer one to try out and it did not work either using Firefox or Safari.  Funny thing, tech support told me the hypertext transfer protocol was “HTTPS” but I found I could only get response using “HTTP”.  Tech support told me the address they gave me worked on their machine.  Https indicates a secure site and a number of issues need to be set correctly and working correctly with your browser as follows: SSL settings, proxy settings, security software such as firewalls.

Boston University offers a wonderful test to see if your web browser is set correctly for proper SSL operation:

All my testing revealed nothing wrong, so my assumption was there was a problem with the Apple web site.

Here are my issues with Apple:

  • If the customer pays for expedited shipping, pun intended, deliver!  This issue is not just a problem for Apple but I experience this problem with most Internet businesses.  You pay for expedited shipping but for some cockamamie reason, you don’t get it.
  • I should have been sent an e-mail telling me how to complete the rebate process for the iTouch.
  • I should have been sent an e-mail telling me that I should expect to receive, in the mail, a package offering the  Apple Protection Plan certificate and CD.
  • When I was directed to a secure web site as a backup option for me to get a copy of the software, make the site work.

Here are the positive aspects of these problems:

  • Apple does have a wonderful support infrastructure that seems to come to the rescue when problems need to be resolved.
  • I had to put Windows XP into my Apple laptop for ham radio and astronomy applications using Boot Camp .  The frustrations arising from the Windows operating system are so apparent and significant, in comparison to the Macintosh operating system.  This validates, in my mind, the huge cost I paid for the Mac laptop.  If you like to tinker, get a Windows machine.  If you like to get work done, get a Mac.

Summary: I recommend that you buy from an Apple Super Store instead of through the Internet store.  It seems to me that almost all these issues and dissapointments, I had,  would not have happened if I had walked into a store and dealt with Apple sales people.  Next, if you buy on line and want expidited shipping you will naturaly pay more, just make sure you will get the item(s) the exact day you expect or sooner.  My recommendation is to not pay for any expidited shipping.

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