MadTECH Computers
Managed I.C.T Services Queensland

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Acer Support (Australia) review.

This review was originally for the Acer Aspire V3-372 laptop, but will go into reviewing the Acer Support Staff (Australia).

The laptop is mid-priced (RRP $1199, can be found online for $820 for the i5 256GB edition).

We purchased ours from MSY for $700 and is the 120GB SSD, 4GB model.  It has a 13.3 " screen, 1920 x 1080 resolution.  It has an i5-6200U processor

For connectivity it has a fold up Gigabit Ethernet adaptor, and wireless AC, and 2.4 and 5ghz bands, and has 3 USB (1 x USB 3.0 and 2 x USB 2.0). It has an SD Card expansion port, and HDMI Video.

It comes with Windows 10 installed (64 bit).  There is no DVD drive, and a 1 year limited mail in warranty.

The warranty had a hardware failure after 2 weeks use.  The client experienced slow internet speeds over a wireless connection.  I tested the unit myself at the madTECH Computers office at Varsity Lakes, Gold Coast.  I found that it did have very poor wireless performance.  I paused the Anti-virus (ESET) protection and this made no difference.  I performed backups, and re-installed Windows, back to factory settings.

When I went back to update the laptop and test, I found the wireless was still very slow, so this ruled out a software issue.  I then plugged in an Ethernet cable and the internet speed was back to normal.  I then configured all settings that could have made any difference including power settings, sleep settings, updated drivers, etc.  All  other devices connected to the same wireless SSID experienced no lag, therefore I diagnosed hardware wireless card failure, or motherboard failure, or the port where the wireless card was connected to the motherboard had failed.

I then called Acer Australia Support on 1300 365 500, experienced a 20 minute wait on hold, then talked to a rep.  I gave him the SNID.  Over the phone, talking to someone who speaks English as a second language; giving them serial numbers and SNID's is difficult and takes a lot of time.  He was reading from a script, asking me to turn off, and turn on etc.  He asked me to perform a factory reset, I explained this had already been done.  He confirmed hardware failure, and gave me a reference number for the call, and reported that I would receive a consignment note via email.  The courier was booked for the next business day.

Total time on phone 60 minutes.

Next day at the office, I followed up the Acer support as I didn't receive the consignment note required for the courier.  I was told the repair had been put on hold until I could provide a DLL number.  I think this is a specific number that the Acer software generates from within the Windows 10 operating system.   You can browse to it via File Explorer.  The Acer technician over the phone tried to get me to browse to the folder.  I explained that the laptop had been factory reset, and all files and folders had been wiped, and it was just a bare bones Windows machine now.  He explained that we couldn't proceed to repair without the DLL.  I asked to speak to his Case manager, and was transferred after some time waiting.

The Acer Case Manager realised the issue, and after hearing my complaints, agreed to provide another 2 months warranty, and approved the repair, and I was emailed the consignment notes, and said I would receive priority repair on the unit, to make up for our lost time.

Total Time on phone to date 120 minutes.

After 5 business days, and a few texts and emails from Acer warranty centre in Sydney, I received a call from Acer.  The support technician explained said that the repair centre had finished the repair, there was no hardware fault found, and that the issue had been resolved by doing a factory reset, and the unit could connect to the wireless fine.  I explained the issue was not connectivity but wireless speeds.  I asked them to test the wireless speeds, they said OK they would do that.

I then immediately received a notification the unit had been dispatched from the repair centre, meaning no testing had been done.

Total Time on phone 150 minutes.

I received the unit, and tested the wireless speeds straight away and it couldn't complete testing due to hardware failure.  I then purchased a USB wireless dongle as a work around, just to get the wireless speeds functional, this worked straight away.  The next day, the laptop stopped working totally, there was no video nor would it turn on.

I called Acer Support again, explained the situation to the helpdesk tech, who escalated the call to a service manager.  This manager was able to resolve the no video or power issue, by getting us to insert a paperclip into the underneath the case in a small pinhole, this is a hardware reset button.  After doing this, I was able to turn the unit on again.  I complained that this seemed like a problematic device and would continue to have problems, and could I get a refund.  However the case manager said I had to send the unit back to the repair centre as this was the only option.

Total Time on Phone 210 minutes.

The unit has since been sent away for service, and I will blog again after this issue is resolved so any one else can see how to deal with Acer Customer Support.

 

Queensland Consumer Guarantee

https://www.qld.gov.au/law/your-rights/consumer-rights-complaints-and-scams/buying-products-and-services/guarantees-warranties-refunds/when-business-fails-to-meet-consumer-guarantee/

Acer neglected to follow the Queensland Consumer Guarantee Act, which states:

Acceptable quality

A business guarantees that goods will be of acceptable quality. This means they must:

  • be fit for all of its usual purposes

  • look acceptable in appearance and finish

  • have no defects

  • be safe

  • be durable.

The laptop suffered a major failure (three times, the first for the wireless failure, then it was repaired, then it was a wireless failure again, and loss of power, wouldn't turn on:

Major failures

A major failure is when goods or services fall significantly short of a consumer guarantee. You have the right to choose which of these options to take in the event of a major failure.

Goods

A major failure with goods is when:

  • you would never have bought them if you knew about the problem

  • the goods are very different from what you saw in a description, sample or demonstration model

  • they’re broken (and can’t be repaired easily), which means they:

    • can’t do their normal job

    • don’t suit the reason you bought them (as long as you told the business about this before buying)

  • the goods are dangerous to use.

If there is a major failure with goods, you can choose to:

  • get a refund

  • swap them for an identical replacement (if it’s reasonable they can get one)

  • swap them for a replacement of similar value

  • keep the goods and be compensated for any drop in value.

kel toyne