Monday, July 14, 2008

Carphone Warehouse: Technically inept or lying bastards?

OK, so I was going to wait a few weeks until the potential rush for iPhones eased off before I decided to take the plunge, but after realising that my contract with 3 whom I have had three problem free years of service was ending on 11th July it occured to me that it was the ideal time to switch.

Anyway, it's the Thursday (1oth) and accepting that I'm probably in for a bit of a wait due to the stuff I'm reading on the net I say to myself, "I'll head over to the CPW website and see if they're still taking orders." I visit the site and to my surprise they have the 16Gb phone "IN STOCK"!

OK there's a note saying that orders received after 3:30pm will not be delivered on the Friday, which is fine for me, so off I go, calling 3 asking for the PAC code so that I can transfer the number. This code is valid for 30 days so obviously the clock is now ticking. (Incidentally, the stuff that 3 were offering me to stay with them was mindbendingly stunning and if I hadn't already committed myself to the iPhone I would have jumped at it, no details but basically any phone I wanted for free, and the sort of tarrif that would make an O2 iPhone subscriber's eyes bleed, including unlimited data) Anyway, I go through the buying process, at each stage the words "In Stock" are there so I'm ploughing on thinking it just might happen.

Finally I get to the last confirmation page still expecting the rug to get pulled and finally... I get a confirmation mail for the order. I do the order status page and it tells me that it will be delivered on the 12th (the Saturday) and I'm thinking "yay!"

Then, later in the evening I get a mail telling me that, to paraphrase: "hey valued customer, you just ordered something on our site, we took your order but now we can't get you what you wanted. Don't worry though, now we have your details we'll be sure to get around to sorting you out at some unspecified time in the future, of our choosing, tosser!"

Now I know how limited stock was, and I know how I'm not the only person to miss out, but the one thing, the ONLY thing that is pissing me off about this whole story is the fact that Carphone Fucking Warehouse had "IN STOCK" plastered all over the iPhone pages and were more than happy to accept my details and go through the charade of taking my order when in fact they in no way, shape or form had any capability or intention of matching up an ORDER with a fucking STOCK ITEM.

Is it just me, or in this day and age with the software and computer capabilities we have available to us is to beyond a large company like CPW to be able to in real-time, match orders with specific items they have in stock? Is it?

I don't fucking think so... although clearly that kind of service is either beyond them or they truly don't give a flying fuck about customers. Which is made self evident in the image below which is taken from their highly informative and useful order status page:

Translation: "You know when you ordered something and we told you it was in stock? Well we lied, but we know you'll sit around waiting so we'll try to do something about it when we can be arsed and you'll just have to guess when that might be. Oh yeah, and here's the date we lied about when we said we would get it to you, just so you can imagine what it would have been like to actually get the thing. Just to rub it in a little bit more!"


Nic Wise said...

I bought it from CPW, and I would never set foot in the place again. They tried to push their insurance (£12/month) rather than o2's (£7.50/month), pushed me into getting a useless and needless screen protector, and to top it off, I get a call today saying "hows the handset going? great! now, about the insurance you bought in the store"

And, in store: "no, you can't move your number from your old O2 account - you have to move it to (eg) orange then back to O2". BULLSHIT. O2 did it in 2 mins over the phone.

If I get billed for it, I'm going to kick up mighty hell. Avoid Carphone Warehouse like the plague. Go to O2 or Apple. I'd trust a street vendor in Brixton more than them now. :)

thumblounge said...

I had a fucking nightmare with CPW at Gapton Hall in Great Yarmouth. Stood in the queue behind 6 other people for an hour before the doors opened late at 8.20am. guess the muppets read the memo wrong. It was an 8.02am launch.

Once in, the manager wouldn't tell any of us what he had in stock until it was our turn at the counter. Twat!

Of course, once we got there, the 16gb was already out of stock, but he was hoping to switch us to an 8gb iPhone.

I asked my wife to leave the shop and ploughed in to the fucker for being a c*nt. Though only verbally... I didn't want to spend my morning in the back of a cop car just because CPW are useless wankers.

Shaun Austin said...

To follow up the story. I finally got the phone a little over a week later, but only after I had to ring up and find out what the hell was going on. CPW had actually taken the cash from my account, even though at that time they had no idea if or when they were going to be able to match up my order with an actual SKU.

On the plus side, my business interaction with CPW is completed and so I don't need to deal with them again.

The phone is great. Yes the camera is shite, and I have actually had an instance when cut and paste would have been handy already. But using the thing is an absolute joy!

If only the area I lived in had as good an O2 coverage as their website claims. But THAT is another post!