Sunday, November 20, 2016

The Lenovo and Best Buy Experience


I'm sure that I am not the only person out there who at one time thought the "Thinkpad" was the panacea of laptops, and to own one was to have achieved status. That of course was many years ago, when IBM's flagship PC product always maintained cutting edge and usability. Now of course it is a Lenovo product and sometimes it is hard to get your head out of your ass and realize that with Lenovo comes the best China has to offer, and that isn't exactly a good thing. Throw in the degeneration of the computer buying market in general and you basically get what you get. You either buy from the source or you buy from one of the three or four places left to buy a computer and it is all a recipe for disaster that we all can't seem to avoid.

I finally broke down and bought a new computer because the computer I owned (that I bought refurbished at that) was getting to sow to accomplish things efficiently. My life is difficult enough without having to deal with taking twice as long getting anything done on a computer. I researched so that I could get the balance I needed at a price I could afford, and the name Lenovo kept coming up. My mind said "hey they own the IBM brands now so they have to be good" and they also just happened to have the features I wanted at a decent price. They were also on sale at Best Buy, which is basically all you have left when it comes to technology stores around here. Don't get me wrong this decision took me several weeks and finally the nerve to do it.

The Lenovo - 300s-08IHH Desktop - Intel Core i5 - 16GB Memory - 2TB Hard Drive came in after a few days, and I waited until the weekend when I had time to set it up. The speed was great, and I was able to process my huge website a hell of a lot faster. I was able to process my videos a hell of a lot faster, and I was able to free up a lot of time. Then things started going on the unit. First it was the wireless, but I ignored it because I could hook up the lan. It seemed like a stupid feature anyway. Then within a couple of months the unit was just shutting down on me, often. I ran the hardware scan that comes with the computer and it told me without a shadow of a doubt that the memory was failing. It also gave me a code so that I could give that to tech support. I was rather impressed at how easy this appeared to be.

It wasn't easy in the least. Tech support ignored me for days by e-mail. Then they acted flustered by phone. All I wanted was new memory, and I could fix it myself. No, they decided that I had to bring it into Best Buy and they would fix it. They made it sound pretty easy, so I drove out to Best Buy (about 20 minutes away each way) and spoke to a really confused employee who didn't seem to understand the easy fix policy. A manager finally came out after another 20 minutes to explain that the easy policy was they sent it to Kentucky, and Lenovo would get back to me. They assured me that it wouldn't be more than a few months. I was getting grumpy, so the manager offered to swap it out for another computer. Of course they don't have those here, so I would have to pick a different computer and pay a little extra.

Now let's talk for a minute about what happens when you are forced to trade in a new computer for another one, for those who don't have this issue. All the software I had gotten FOR the new Lenovo, probably gone. Most software licenses (not all) end with the computer they were installed on. Of course it bets having a computer that only can stay on for 10 minutes. I'd like to tell you how it went on the new HP I paid an extra $115 to upgrade to, but I can't. This brings us to the Best Buy portion of the experience. They didn't have any of the computers that were comparable for a nominal cost, so I had to plunk down the money and wait for the new one to come in. I waited, and I waited, and I waited.

When I finally called them on Friday I found some tech support that made Lenovo seem like a happy experience. I waited 25 minutes on hold. I know because my phone tells me how long I have been on it. I spoke to someone who took all my information and then put me on hold. 15 minutes later another person came on the phone and she couldn't understand what the issue was, because it said that I had taken the computer with me. She needed to put me on hold to speak to the warehouse manager. Another 10 minutes on hold and thankfully the warehouse manager must have been an honest person because he/she told her that I couldn't have taken it with me because it wasn't in stock that day, and I didn't get the one that came in that week because they sold it.

Well after she apologized to me she told me that they would ship me on. I hope to get it on Tuesday. Why would I give such a long winded and pretty lame review here? Well because after I put an honest review of the Lenovo, and the experience on Best Buy as the website e-mails kept begging me to do, it hasn't been posted and they deleted all of my Best Buy points. It goes to show why I iss Circuit City, but it also reminds me why the brick and mortar establishments are losing ground to the online sites. Newegg, Amazon or a myriad of other online sites wouldn't have put e through this, but the most important thing to remember is you get what you get when you forget where your purchases come from to begin with.