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Palm OS PDAs >> Palm Inc.

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xr628
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Palm's poor tech support indicates Palm is going down
      #22779 - 02/21/06 10:38 PM

I bought a Lifedrive for daily use in my medical practice in May of 05. I like it. It locked up due to hardware failure after a few months. Fine, it happens. The refurbished replacement dies similarly after a few weeks. Fine. The next repleacement arrives DOA, completely dead. Tech support tells me that because it is my second replacement in one year, I have to wait 7 days for an engineering review. As if it were my fault that I got a DOA unit. The previous units were pristine, never dropped or missused.
Look at Palm's tech support page. It takes some effort to find an actual tech support number. For those of you who have not tried it, the person who you actually speak with is a receptionist who tediously goes through the same decision tree as the web site. I have a physically dead unit and still have to listen to walk through of a boot process on a dead black screen. No Palm customer ever talks to a technically knowledgable person on their tech support line. Ever. IMHO Palm is not interested in supporting their products.


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Jacob_SpindelModerator
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Re: Palm's poor tech support indicates Palm is going down [Re: xr628]
      #22784 - 02/22/06 12:24 PM

So any tech company with poor support is on the brink of going out of business?

Oh no! It's the end of the tech industry! Get out your paper planners and stone tablets!
</sarcastic>

Frankly, getting that many problems that quickly is more likely to be a user error rather than a "hardware problem." Although it is theoretically possible to get several lemons in a row, most users who think that they did have actually just reinstalled the same incompatible software over and over because they didn't read Palm's HotSync instructions.

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roadgecko352
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Re: Palm's poor tech support indicates Palm is going down [Re: Jacob_Spindel]
      #22786 - 02/22/06 12:42 PM

How bad the tech support is may not have any bearing on the status of the company but I have had similar problems. I bought a Life Drive in October 2005. I took good care of it and used it every day. One day in December I checked my Calendar before I left for work and it was working fine but by the time I got to work it would not turn on. The only software installed on it was palm approved software from the Palm Store. After going back and forth with the email support for a couple weeks I got a phone number to request a repair order. I had to send it in two times before they fixed that problem and now that I have it back it still doesn't work. It turns on but it won't go past the inital stylus setup. It continuously asks me to tap the bullseye. Now I am having trouble getting a replacement at all and I am starting to doubt that it will work since they won't send me a new one but rather a refurbished one. Which no doubt means that they think they fixed a broken one.
I am frustrated because I have only been out of college about 2 years and I don't really have $500 to waste on a piece of junk. I bought another Palm because I really liked the one my Uncle had given me in high school and the Handspring that was part of my tech package in college, but now I feel like I should have bought something else.


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xr628
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Re: Palm's poor tech support indicates Palm is going down [Re: roadgecko352]
      #22792 - 02/22/06 06:44 PM

No need to flame. I did not intend to offend or to sound too opinionated. However, the computer/tech sector is competitive. IMHO once it becomes widely known, tech support this bad is not sutainable even for a great device like the LifeDrive. If I knew then what I know now, I would not have purchased the LifeDrive. Most people cannot afford $499 replacements every few months or even weeks. BTW if anyone reading this thread does'nt believe my experience, try the support line yourself.

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xr628
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Re: Palm's poor tech support indicates Palm is going down [Re: xr628]
      #22793 - 02/22/06 06:52 PM

Hey Jacob, by the way I don't think your comments suggesting user (me) error is pertinent. The third unit was DOA. Gecko had a similar problem. Dead is dead. This is not user error. That was the central point of this thread. If it was my error Palm could have easily notified me.

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Jacob_SpindelModerator
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Re: Palm's poor tech support indicates Palm is going down [Re: xr628]
      #22796 - 02/23/06 10:45 AM

I'm not flaming - I'm just speaking from experience. I do tons of Palm troubleshooting here and on other boards, and the fact is that many "Palm hardware problems" do turn out to be user errors. I haven't seen your actual units, and if one was truly DOA, then that one certainly wasn't your fault. I tried to make it clear that I was speaking "statistically" rather than referring to your individual case, since I don't know the specifics.

I think it actually is already well known that Palm has poor support, unfortunately. Although it would certainly be nice if they would solve their own problems, it would also be a good idea to research these things a little more yourself before buying such an expensive device.

Just because Palm decides to send you a replacement doesn't mean it really was a hardware problem - it just means that the tech support people were stumped, which, unfortunately, doesn't take much, as you've discovered.

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Dan_42
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Re: Palm's poor tech support indicates Palm is going down [Re: Jacob_Spindel]
      #23933 - 05/16/06 09:52 PM

I think that the quality of responses via Palm's support section of the website IS pretty poor, and has been for several years now. In fact, when was it ever good? With my older models (Palm Vx), I don't recall ever needing to consult support since there weren't really any issues that came up.

The newer Palm OS 5 and up devices have been more complicated and had more software conflicts (why else do you have to soft reset at least once per day? Why did the reset function on the lifedrive become a dedicated button?) and as such probably caused more confusion

Despite the general unhelpfulness of their support, they still seem to be having pretty good business. So, I'm not sure if there's really a correlation there (though one would think there should be).

I'll go as far as to say that their website seems better organized in 2006 than previously; it's been quicker and more responsive (in my experience, YMMV) when searching for help questions and software downloads.


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kayen
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Re: Palm's poor tech support indicates Palm is going down [Re: Jacob_Spindel]
      #24612 - 07/23/06 12:51 PM

Quote:

Frankly, getting that many problems that quickly is more likely to be a user error rather than a "hardware problem." Although it is theoretically possible to get several lemons in a row




This is Palm we're talking about. Their products are badly made and backed by even worse support. Anyone who buys one of their products today is just asking for trouble.


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