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First-class customer service from Toshiba


Hold up! Before you read on, please read this...

This post was published more than 13 years ago

I keep old posts on the site because I often enjoy reading old content on other people's sites. It can be interesting to see how views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have, to put it mildly, mellowed.

I'm not a believer in brushing the past under the carpet. I've written some offensive rubbish on here in the past: deleting it and pretending it never happened doesn't change that. I hope that stumbling across something that's 13 years old won't offend anyone anew, because I hope that people can understand that what I thought and felt and wrote about then is probably very different to what I think and feel and write about now. It's a relic of an (albeit recent) bygone era.

So, given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views may well have changed in the last 13 years. I have written some very silly things over the years, many of which I find utterly cringeworthy today.
  • This post might use words or language in ways which I would now consider highly inappropriate, offensive, embarrassing, or all three.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken, and embedded material might not appear properly.

Okay. Consider yourself duly warned. Read on...

My new(ish) Toshiba laptop developed a Hard Drive fault last week. This was more than a little annoying, given that the notebook is quite new – but the world isn’t perfect, and these things sometimes go wrong, especially when new.

So I phoned their 24/7 Global Support Line on a Sunday evening. My call was answered immediately, without queueing. The lovely technical support guy agreed with me in less than five minutes that the HD needed replacing, and organised for it to be done. I was called and emailed on Monday morning to explain the process, and to give me a pick-up slot. Communication throughout was helpful, apologetic, and impeccably polite.

The laptop was packed up and picked up by the courier exactly on time, and was back with me within three days, working perfectly and with a helpful report explaining the exact action that had been taken.

I didn’t think anyone could ask for much more from Toshiba customer support given that they fixed the laptop very efficiently at absolutely no cost to myself. But Toshiba now offer a full refund if a laptop develops a fault during the first year of operation. The company has acted absolutely impeccably.

It’s something certain companies could learn from – and something that would certainly make me buy from them again.

This 1,012th post was filed under: Miscellaneous.

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Comments and responses

Comment from Pete

    15.31, 19/12/2006

Fortunatly I have not had a problem with my toshiba laptop (thats done it now 🙂 ), but in the 3 years I have had it, and used it almost every day, it has been nothing but reliable. I have had a couple of toshiba laptops now, and my next will be toshiba also. Its great to here that the customer support is as good as the product.

Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)

    18.11, 19/12/2006

It is good to know that the customer service is so excellent. I have several friends with Toshiba notebooks, and mine is the first to go wrong. I’m more used to Compaq notebooks, but will be sticking to Toshiba from now on, after my poor experience with the Compaq.

In fact, one friend has a Toshiba that’s been going for well over five years – and, except for being considerably lower-spec than anything around nowadays, it still works a treat.

Comment from Mort Karman

    19.19, 25/12/2006

You are lucky you dealt with a decent firm. I got a HP computer new in September and it has never worked right. I called customer “service” and each time a nice person in India corrected the problem over the phone and it worked right for anywhere from a few hours to a few days. After several months of this HP agreed to take the unit to the factory service for repairs. It came back with even more things wrong with it. I called again to ask that they take this lemon back and give me a new tower. They refused. In desperation I called the manager of Wall-Mart where I bought this piece of crap and told him I had spent close to $1,600 on a computer I could not even type a single news story on without something going wrong. He agreed to replace it and promised to call me as soon as an ordered replacement comes in. Because of the holidays he said it will be early January, but that is not his fault. I appreciate the store doing the right thing. Several people I know have the same complaint about HP. I will never buy another of their products again. My Dell XPS works fine (purchased about same time) and the service from that company is good. The business community has credit bureaus where they check the credit of us little people. Perhaps we need a reverse credit bureau to rate the big companies on how they treat the customers. I would flunk HP.
Have a Happy New Year and keep up this fantastic toolbar. As a semi retired journalist I enjoy reading stuff from it. On a side note a warning to all who rwrite over the Internet. Some people take articles and use them in there own blogs, this is okay and no different then the old letters to the editor. But some criminal types are using the good names of writers and companies to try to go around the content controls people place on their computer. A few weeks ago I looked up “Mort Karman” on Yahoo and in addition to good stuff I found several of my articles I had written for All Headline News used without my or AHN permission.I don’t mind the legitimate ones. But “Mort Karman All Headline News staff writer” on porno sites is not good. This is not what this award winning photojournalist is doing in retirement. I have been told this is something being done to many unsuspecting people. So be warned and check. It is almost impossible to go after the porn producers as most are in offshore areas which do not have strong laws reguarding this kind of practice. To add insult to injury I am still waiting to get paid from All Headline Mews.I quit on 5 November and I still do not have my October cheque. They owe me close to $800 and for a person who is disabled and trying to live on a pension that is a lot of money.

Comment from Mort Karman

    21.12, 25/12/2006

Believe it or not, I can spel. I just can’t get my fingers to work so I can type.

Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)

    01.07, 26/12/2006

Thanks for the kind comments about the toolbar – it’s something people don’t tend to comment on too much, even though it has quite a few users!

As for HP… I haven’t heard any good comments about their customer service from anyone, and your experience does nothing to change that! I certainly wouldn’t buy from them again.

And thanks for the heads-up about people stealing articles and the like – it’s something I’ll watch out for.

Merry Christmas, too!

Comment from Anonymous

    09.18, 18/04/2007

That’s all very well but my Toshiba hard drive has been replaced THREE TIMES so far. Good customer service can’t simply make up for bad bad products…

Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)

    15.38, 18/04/2007

Good customer service can’t make up for bad products, but I’ve found Toshiba products to be pretty good on the whole – and the experience has been much better than the nightmare of working with HP.

Comment from Andrew

    15.04, 27/06/2007

I am nothing but dissapointed with Toshiba’s customer service. I bought an LCD TV 2 months ago and it delveloped a fault, it took them 2 days to get an engineer to me (I say engineer, it was in fact a elderly gentlemen who had no technical expertise), he turned up in a rusty van, scratched his head then loaded my new into the back van which was decked with old sofa cushions so my TV would receive any damage. I would have thought they would send a Toshiba engineer and not just ‘some bloke’ from a local repair centre. I was not left (or even offered) a loan TV set, apparently this isn’t Toshiba’s policy. I find it amazing that they can (and do) offer customers who have bought their £150 DVD players a loaner but for those who have shelled out £1500 you get nothing. I was told my TV would returned to me within 2 weeks.
When my Sony monitor developed a fault a courier picked it up and left a replacement the next day
Needless to say I will not be buying Toshiba again.

Comment from Mr Bean

    14.57, 29/07/2008

I have several Toshiba products including TV’s and a laptop computer and have always find there products well prices and to be good quality.

Toshiba W42WL58P is perfect for a HD ready TV and has a clear picture with quality sound and all the inputs you will need plus a easy to use remote control with cool looks

Unfortunately after 16 months of service my Toshiba went bang but I would still recommend the product and will get myself a new Toshiba HD TV in a few years time.

Warning about MediaMarkt & E-Care scam.

E-Care ref 538008

I Purchased the 42 inch Toshiba TV from MediaMarkt in Belgium and it went wrong so under the guarantee I asked for the TV to repaired and contacted E-Care in Antwerp who then picked the TV up some two weeks later.

After several more weeks I contacted E-Care who said they could not get the parts to repair the TV and would send a credit note to MediaMarkt so that I could go and get myself a new TV and since the credit note was ‘In the post’ and I had been without a TV for two months I paid a deposit for a new TV.

Day after day I contacted MediaMarkt to ask if the credit note had arrived so that I could pick my new TV up only to be told the credit note had not arrived and that they were chasing it up.

Today some ten weeks later I am still without a TV and have been told that the parts to fix the TV have arrived and I will be getting my old TV returned some time later this week.

Clearly E-Care and MediaMarkt have been telling Lies and using me as pig in the middle and have failed to provide a reasonable service in taking far too long to fix and return my TV and using deceit as a delaying tactic.

Does anyone know the legal position on this ?

I would avoid both companies unless you like being scammed like me.

Comment from Anonymous

    18.52, 19/12/2008

Toshiba Repair Service Negligent, and in Breach of Contract:

I had a very different experience with Toshiba:

I submitted my Toshiba U300 for repair on Nov 12 because it wasn’t making any sound. They told us it would take 3-5 days. I called to check up on the 21st Nov, when I was told it was waiting on the workbench to begin work, which had only just been approved. The estimate was then changed again to 3-5 days from then, and I was told that in all likelihood it would be back with me by the 27th when I was leaving the county. It wasn’t. It took until Dec 9th to get back, with no explanation. When it got back the power board had a problem that never existed before – it shuts off on its own, at randomn, anywhere between 20 seconds and 10 minutes of power up. No saving, and all work is lost.

We called on the 10th Dec, and while trying to negotiate an immediate repair over the phone I was lied to 4 times:
1) Nick from Customer Services told me he would put me through to head office. Instead, he put through to his supervisor.
Keith Harding, his supervisor, refused to provide an onsite repair. Instead, he fed me three seperate lies
2) that he would make sure this was a “Priority Repair” with their service contractor, Teleplan. Over a week later, Dec 19, not a single thing has been done on it.
3) that he personally would follow up with me on the status of the computer with a phone call or email the following day. He never called, he never emailed.
4) that the computer would be picked up the next day, the 11th Dec. It wasn’t picked up until the 12th.

No explanation was made for any of these errors. No accountability can be found by anyone in the company. They refuse to make good on the repair service that customers pay for, and develop long chains of excuses and responsibility-avoidance in their attempts to exhaust enquirers. But their company is in the wrong. They promise up to 5 days, and they take a month. And no one is taking action.

These issues are endemic throughout the company, and people report similar crap service all around the world despite having paid for warranty repairs. Toshiba as a corporation has institutionalized systematic deceit and betrayal of their customers. I recommend a class-action lawsuit against Toshiba. What do you think?

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