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warning (comment?) about dell’s completecare service

When I purchased my laptop a little bit over a year ago, I added Dell’s CompleteCare service to it. This was advertised (at the time) as “3-year Next Business Day Onsite warranty with CompleteCare”. To me, this implied that the CompleteCare service would be rendered on-site on the next-day. However, a couple weeks ago, I pulled a stupid, and spilled hot chocolate all over my laptop. After talking to many manager and such, Dell demanded that my laptop be sent in to the depot for service. I was rather irritated (to say the least), but finally found a CompleteCare terms and conditions sheet online that did specify that CompleteCare service is generally rendered at a depot.

Dell did do a pretty quick turn-around — they had someone from DHL out with a box to pick it up on a Thursday, and I received the laptop the next Wednesday. However, the hard drive was still not fixed — the laptop included a note saying the depot didn’t have the hard drive in stock, and they would ship me one out. I called support, and ensured that they were shipping it out – I got it the next day. It also turned out that they didn’t include the PCMCIA card blank (no big deal), and the Bluetooth card.. they also shipped those out without a problem. I was also a little annoyed that they shipped the laptop back second-day delivery (it shipped on Monday) when the manager had promised me that they would expedite it as much as possible, but I guess that’s ok.

I waited a week or two to post this, because I was *really* annoyed that they wouldn’t do the service onsite, and wanted some time to calm down before posting a nasty rant. Looking back, they still did a pretty decent job – their warranty service still beats what any other company I’ve seen would have done (“You spilled hot chocolate on your laptop? Buy a new one.”) I certainly will not buy another laptop from Dell Home, though — any future purchases will be from Dell Small Business. That way, I’ll at least talk to someone who has a reasonable grasp of the English language.

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