Dell Support Woes Again

As you will have read here I previously owned a Dell Inspiron Mini 10 (1011) and had a host of issues that resulted in the laptop being returned for a full refund.
I really liked my Dell Mini 10 so I thought I would give them another go.
I ordered another Dell Mini 10 from the Dell UK Outlet.

Once Bitten…

Things looked good, they now have the laptop with Windows 7, the last one was XP, they had lots in stock and the laptop was delivered in under a week, great service as usual.
Unpacking the laptop the alarm bells started to ring.

  1. The supplied manuals were not in English.
  2. The power adaptor was NOT a UK three pin plug
  3. The keyboard was a US keyboard rather than the UK layout

Not a problem, I’ll just give Dell a call and get this resolved…
The Dell answer machine confirmed that on a Saturday they are only open from 9am to 5pm, unfortunately I was calling them at 11:30am – why was I getting the answer machine?
Never mind, I’ll use the website and record my problem there. The web site recorded all my details, including my e-mail address. I sat back and waited for the standard template e-mail telling me how important my e-mail was and that it would be dealt with promptly on Monday morning. No confirmation e-mail arrived.
Come Monday afternoon (sarcasm)I’m at a loose end(/sarcasm) and I decide to call Dell to confirm that they received notification of my problem.
I get transferred from Technical Support to Customer Care. I cannot fault the agent I dealt with, he was clear, upfront and honest, but the outcome staggered me.
He confirmed that “We have recieved a LOT of complaints about Romanian units being shipped to the UK”.
My options were:

  1. He sends me out a new power supply in the post, I don’t need to return my Romanian one.
  2. He can arrange for the keyboard to be replaced but this may take a while, he knows of other cases where this has taken over two weeks.
  3. He can arrange for my laptop to be completely replaced by a UK unit and I can keep my Romanian one until a UK one is sourced but he cannot confirm the timescales for this, it may even be months.

This seems fair at first but after some clarification.

  1. If I accept a new power supply, I cannot then have the keyboard replaced.
  2. If I wait until a new keyboard is available, he cannot send out a new power supply before that (rendering my laptop unusable)
  3. If I accept a replacement unit, again a power supply cannot be shipped to cover the indeterminate period

I decided to take option four and go for a complete refund.
The galling thing is I have an agent that claims that there are no UK spec Inspiron Mini 10s in stock and no sight as to when one will be available. (177 inspiron mini 1011 laptops are listed on the web site at the moment)
In the meantime are proudly proclaiming that there is loads of stock and they are even giving money off!
Are they giving money off as they know that these are non UK spec laptops?
To make matters worse the call lasts an hour, yes sixty minutes !

My wife’s mini 10 has a bent palmrest which has scratched the screen, this is being collected for repair “sometime this week or next, will someone be in between 9 and 5?”

In Summary

The two laptops I bought for the kids have been fine!
The laptop I bought for my wife has been rebuilt incorrectly, damaging the screen.
My first laptop was not registered to me, had a hard disk swapped and Windows reinstalled, motherboard replaced and two (incorrect spec) LCD screens sent out before I opted for a refund.
My second laptop is non UK spec with an incorrect keyboard, no power supply and no firm date for a resolution.
Should I buy another Dell?

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