Wednesday, May 07, 2014

The smart phone owner

My smart phone had been charging erratically, sometimes overnight it charged fully, but sometimes it only goes to a few percent.  I asked a fellow at a kiosk in the Mall that sells phones what was the problem and he (as expected) said "you need a new battery," and he offered to sell me one for NIS 150 ($43). I declined and decided to take it to the place where I bought it, Cellcom.
When I entered the Cellcom office in Netanya the computer that gives out numbers was not working, not a good sign.  So they sent me to a guy who was obviously not interested in me, he took my phone and the charger and said they would test them.  Then he continued doing his own work.  When the person next to me left he said "why don't you go to her" indicating the girl in the next position.  I moved over, she was very nice and asked me what the problem was, I told ther that they were checking my battery and charger.  So she told me a story that the smart phone I have charges slowly and sometimes its not possible to tell what the problem is.  Then she said "wait a minute," and she got up, walked across the room and went out of the front door.
I sat there for 5 mins, time went by and then I got angry and I went to the clerk at the front desk and asked for the manager (in Hebrew and English).  He tried to ignore me, but I persisted, so he indicated a woman standing on the side, who was clearly the cashier.  Anyway I went to her and complained and she said "don't worry, she'll be back soon."  I said "that's not good enough," and then the fellow from the front desk came over and said, "she's talking to the expert (momchet), he's outside smoking," and he took me to the door to see.  When she saw me the girl stopped chatting with the guys there and came back and told me, "the expert says that he can't tell what is wrong, so we'll have to send your smart phone to the laboratory."  How this "expert" could know this is a mystery. 
When we got back to her desk she retrieved my phone and charger and told me that to send it to the laboratory for testing would cost NIS 275 ($79) and would take 2-3 days and it would wipe out all the information on my phone. So I asked was it the battery, and she said no, it does work but they are not sure why the phone is not charging.  If it did need a new battery though, it would cost a further NIS 150, a total of NIS 425 ($122).  I said thank you very much and I retrieved the smart phone and charger.  As I was leaving she said, "well, you could take it to the private dealer next door to have him check it."

So I went next door to the small cell-phone store, and asked the man, who was totally bored with his job, if he could tell me was it the battery or the charger that was wrong, and I told him that Cellcom had said the battery actually works.  So he connected my phone and charger to the electricity and he told me "it's not charging."  I said "I told you that."  So then he connected my phone to his charger, and immediately it began charging!  He said you need a new charger, cost NIS 50 ($14).  So I bought a new charger and it has been charging fine ever since.  Moral of this story, Cellcom was totally incompetent and/or dishonest.  I wasted about 30 mins there and if I had trusted them it would probably have cost me $122, instead in 5 mins I solved my problem for $14.  Conclusion, if you want to own a smart phone, be smart. 


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