It's unbelieveable how incompetent sales and technical staff are

Five weeks ago, I decided to buy a new LED TV. I had read about the Samsung UE27D5000 model on sites, including Amazon, and seen it in shops. I phoned Samsung sales to get a few details about it, and the first thing the salesman said was that there was no such model. To be fair to him, it wasn’t listed on Samasung’s UK website, but as it is part of their current model range (the ‘D’ designates 2011) this, in itself, rather surprised me.

I also wanted to know about connecting a pvr to the TV. He told me I didn’t need to because ‘all Samsung TVs come with pvrs.’ No they don’t.

Earlier today, it started switching itself off. I rang Samsung tech support. The only correct thing they said was that I needed to download the latest software update. How they told me to download and install it - over five separate phone calls - couldn’t have been more incorrect. In the end, I discovered how to do it myself by reading the manual. Absolutely un-fucking-believable.

So, Samsung, so far, you have failed three out of three times. And your pathetic attempts have left an - as far as I can see - unremovable error message. So -oh joy of joys - I’ll be phoning you again on Monday. I’m not optimistic.

About 10 years ago, my company purchased several dozen 17 inch Samsung monitors for industrial applications.

It wasn’t so much the fact that the monitors had an unacceptably high failure rate, so much as it was Samsung’s response to the problem, which left a bitter taste in our mouths to this day.

I’ll be senile before I spend another nickel on one of their products.

I cannot understand how companies these days think so little of their customers that they put us through telephone hell to even get to talk to a human and then that human don’t know fuck-all.

Oy, it seems that tech support at all companies is that way these days doesn’t it?
yeah, I’ve dealt with samsung tech support, ya couldn’t be more right

I have good luck with Samsung products but have never had to deal with their sales or support. And I’m glad I haven’t!

Time to invoke the Sale of Goods Act and return them as unfit?


I phoned them this morning, and explained, in detail, the current fault. I had to repeat myself several times because she didn’t seem to properly understand the issue. When I thought that I’d got her to fully grasp it, she played her killer move. She said; ‘You phoned on Friday. Is that fault sorted out?’ I said that it was - though I sorted it out myself and that their incorrect instructions had created the current problem. She then said: ‘I’m glad that your problem has been resolved. Thank you for calling Samsung UK.’ I’m honestly not making this up. When I had managed to get her back on track, she told me that the TV is faulty - really? I wondered why I was ringing her - and that they would take it in for repair.

I bought it from Amazon (UK) and I always thought that you had some sort of redress after 30 days - but apparently not. It says on their site that after 30 days, it’s up to me and the manufacturer.

Just to be clear, your first call was before you’d bought anything, right? Why did you choose to give them money after they demonstrated themselves to be incompetent? I’m not saying you deserve the poor treatment you’re getting, but, well, if we keep rewarding them, why would they change?

I bought a Samsung LCD TV not quite three years ago. It also shuts itself off and back on occasionally. More problematic, a few months ago it began taking longer and longer to power on when it was cold, and would make repeated clicking noises for nearly a full minute before finally coming on. Doing a bit of research online, I found that this is apparently a very common problem resulting from failing capacitors. To Samsung’s credit, then authorized a free “one-time” repair even though it was past its warranty period of two years, and it was a house call so I didn’t have to take it anywhere. (This took a couple of phone calls / live chats to accomplish.)

That problem is fixed, but now the TV makes a high-pitched whine when it’s powered off (on standby) but plugged in. A failing power supply, I think. I’ve been unplugging it at night so the cat doesn’t have to listen to the continuous screech (which oddly, my wife says she can’t hear).

I’ve been happy with the TV for the most part, but they really seem to have some quality control issues on a mass scale. I probably won’t buy another Samsung when this TV dies.

My favorite story. I was at Best Buy years ago and overheard a sales person selling someone a Home Theater in a box. It consisted of a DVD/receiver and some cheapo 5.1 speakers. The sales person told the customer that she wouldn’t get true surround sound unless she upgraded from composite video to S-Video cables. I still have to wonder if he was just trying to sell a cable or if he really was that stupid. I was this > < close to stepping in, but I figured for the $10 she would spend on the cable, I really didn’t want to get in the middle of it.

They were selling the cable—they get whacked if they don’t have the required ‘attachments’. And it was probably closer to $50

Often those employees get very little training. The Internet is almost always your best bet; but you knew that already.

(and by the way, I work in tech support and at least try to give a shit but the problem is just that in general, sloppy work ethics and poor attention to detail are allowed to slide far too often)

I researched my prospective purchase quite thoroughly, and the range of TVs get good reviews. I wanted a 27" LED TV, and there isn’t much choiice. At the time, I thought that it must be just one incompetent salesman. I had no idea that that applied to tech support as well. I’ve looked for an alternative make and, with regret, I think I’d have to buy a Samsung again.

It’s difficult to find out about tech support until you need them.

You mean those people who are paid $8-10 per hour, given only a couple of hours of training and access to shitty on-line tools and are somehow expected by the customers to be perfect experts on every aspect of every product their company sells and supports?

I am constantly amazed at how much I am expected to know about obscure functions of our products by screaming assholes who expect me to have years of experience doing things 99.9% of our customers have no interest in and that I have never had a call about in the last several years. Then of course, they want me to instantly connect them with a subject matter expert or the person who wrote the software. Sorry sunshine, ain’t going to happen.

Then what is the point of tech support? It seems like you’re saying the customer should be given a list of what the support guy can handle, and for everything else - they do what?

I appreciate that is not always the support guy’s fault; it can be the lack of training or support from their employers. But the point of contact for the customer is the support guy. There is, of course, no excuse for rudeness or aggression; but the frustration can build up to unbearable levels. In my examples above, the support staff were just not listening to what I had said. (I did remain civil.)

Well, a good tech support person understands that it’s impossible for anyone to know everything about every possible feature of every doowhizdad that’s been on the market for 5 minutes (and will stay on it about that much longer) off the top of his/her head. Which is why the right answer to a question you don’t know the answer to is “I’m not sure, but I can find out.” Of course, instead many simply make some shit up since they’re not really held accountable for what they say and it’s easier that way.

The other bit I love is that at the beginning of every call, you get that message ‘your call will be recorded for training purposes.’ Huh.

I think amazon are wrong here and are trying to fob you off. Quartz is, I think correct when he/she says that the Sale of Goods act applies here and Amazon are still on the hook.
Key bit although the whole guidance is worth reading carefully:

Key bit although the whole guidance is worth reading:

I am not a lawyer but after reading through a lot of guff on the sale of goods act, the usual sticking point comes down to what is a ‘reasonable’ amount of time for a product or service to fail. I think Amazon would struggle to say 5 weeks is reasonable for a TV. My understanding after reading through all the bumf is they don’t have a leg to stand on if the thing breaks in the first six months. Go back to them and threaten to report them to Trading Standards if needs be.

Good luck!

Thank you, Promethea, but I think the situation is a little complicated. When I first bought the TV, it didn’t appear to have a fault; that only appeared last Saturday. A firmware upgrade has solved that problem, but the instructions I received from Samsung to install it has created another problem. Annoyingly, I’m sure it’s not a mechanical fault, but a firmware/software one which, if the tech support were clued up enough, they could lead me through curing it. There is a service menu - which is not for the end user - and I’m sure the answer lies in there somewhere.

So, the original fault probably was there originally, didn’t appear until later, but should have been easily sorted out without creating another problem.

Another way of looking at it is that you purchased a brand new TV which didn’t work as promised (switching itself off). And despite three attempts via the manufacturer to get the TV working as promised, they’ve failed. And so amazon have sold you a duff TV and thus owe it you to repair or replace. I couldn’t see anything in law to say that once you take advice from the manufacturer about fixing defective products as directed that it absolves the seller of their obligations (although I’m open to corrections there).

I get that it would be about a billion times easier if Sansung knew how to fix their products, of course. If nothing else, sending stuff back is a pain in the arse.

I really hope you get the TV working - I’ll watch this space with interest. Also, forgive me if it’s too obvious but have you tried googling the error message to see if other users have the problem and any fixes?