Background: I used to be a very "loyal" ASUS customer – my mom uses ASUS, both my current and last laptop are ASUS, and I’ve been using this brand way back since I was in China.
I’ve been pretty satisfied with their computers, until last year. Last April (I think), I bought a laptop (ASUS X555LAB) from Best Buy Online. The purchase was pretty successful, with a couple delays during the shipping which was understandable. But the problem starts 2 weeks after the purchase: the system did not start up – hard drive failed. I went to Best Buy, where I originally bought the device at. I got the following response: just because I installed a dual boot operating system on my device, they refused to fix this (they said ASUS will not cover warranty with custom software installed). I explained that dual boot is only installing another piece of software along side of the original Windows operating system. The "Geek Squad" guy just kept telling me that they will not fix this unless I buy a $200 (I think) Best Buy warranty package. This was just ridiculous – I bought this device during sale at $500, and I had to pay another $200 just for fixing it? What did the warranty do?
I kept on asking: what if I go to ASUS customer service, will they fix it for me?
Best Buy people said no – "They will not cover units with custom software installed".
I simply argued, "Define ‘software’ – if an operating system is a software, isn’t Microsoft Office, Google Chrome, or any other Windows software, too? Will you still cover the unit if I have these installed?"
They sounded like idiots that did not know how computers worked.
Losing my trust and patience with Best Buy customer service, I decided to go online for an ASUS RMA(Return Merchandise Authorization) process. And the fixing was free.
The problem I had for the first RMA was, the service representative did not offer a shipping label to me that time, which I received during the next few times, so I had to pay for the shipment. Not a big problem, but definitely an issue with the training process of customer service representatives.
Nothing happened for the next half year after I received my device back from the first RMA process.
There came the second issue. For most of the time, my laptop is always connected to the power cord as I usually use it as a desktop PC. During one of those rare cases when I had to unplug it from the power cord around a month ago, a weird thing happened: as soon as the battery percentage went under 50%, the backlight of the LCD display began to flash. At first it was bearable, yet it became intense – every mouse move will cause the screen to flash and I can’t even use the machine on battery anymore. Very disappointed with the quality of the device, I decided to return it to ASUS’s repair facility again. And I can say, that was the worst experience ever. FedEX shipping had delays, which they could not avoid because of the snow storm on the west coast. But after receiving the unit, the online status of the repair became "unfound/RMA does not exist". I was really concerned that my device has been lost, so I tried to contact ASUS’s customer service again. It was probably the nineth or tenth time I was chatting with the online service people. They told me they had "technical difficulties" and I need to wait for 24 hours to see a status update. So I waited. It didn’t update on the second night, neither did it update on the next. I finally lost my patience, and tried to text these people again. This time, I got a different response: manual fault, but the device is waiting for parts. "Alright, then I’ll wait." I said.
Surprisingly, the device was shipped on very next day after that chat. I received the device a week later, (that delivery was so slow they need to upgrade their service), didn’t actually check if the problem was fixed or not, which I regretted not doing. Last week, I had another "unusual" occasion where I had to put the device on battery. The same exact problem came back again. I thought that it was the same problem happening again, but after chatting (yup, again) with a representative I was told that the device actually left the facility UNFIXED during the last repair.
Now I have to send it back to ASUS and start the stupid process all over again. I am extremely unsatisfied with the quality of both the product and the customer service of the company. I used to be a loyal customer, but unfortunately they just ruined my loyalty. I am absolutely not buying an ASUS device for my next laptop anymore. I have nowhere to complain but to share my story here on my blog. So please, next time when you choose a device, no matter if it’s a phone or a computer, read the reviews and check the ratings of the customer service. Real story, real experience; no pain, no gain.
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