Okay, I bought my V1 back in 1997 and I have been a very proud owner since. I have referred many of my friends to the V1 as well. I have had numerous RDs by other manufacturers before, but they were all disappointments (not here to start a debate, just my own experience). Well, when I am online (on this forum), I see so many people are happy with VR's customer service. This is why I was taken by complete surprise today when I called about my upgrade! Their customer service representatives were so unfriendly!
You see, I sent in my V1 1.7 firmware 2.6xx or 2.8xx (forget which one) for an upgrade to V1 1.8 firmware 3.826 last tuesday. My unit arrived on friday at VR's. That same day VR called me, but I slept in late and missed their call. By the time I called them they were closed (I'm on the west coast of Canada). So, this morning (monday), I called them to find out why they called me.
When a lady answered the phone, I told her that I had sent in my old unit for an upgrade and VR had called me and that's why I am calling them. She asked for my name and so I gave her my name. All of a sudden, her tone of voice changed (they seem to speak in a mono tone kind of voice all the time anyway). The first words that came out of her mouth were "We need to find out how to ship back to you. Do you want UPS Ground, or Next Day Air?" (again, not in a friendly tone of voicel) I thought to myself, "what's going on here? I followed the upgrade page's instruction carefully and I picked the UPS-2 Day $14.00". So, I asked her what happened to my choice (that I indicated with my upgrade form). She basically just ignored my question, so I asked her again and again. Until, finally, she said that the option is not available to Canada! I then told her that UPS-2 Day was one of the choices. She just said, "no, it has never been... blah blah blah".
At that point, I was not happy with how she was treating me. Hence, I asked for her manager. A minute later, another lady picked up the phone. As soon as she picked up the phone, she said "well, we are giving you two choices, so what's the matter?". Well, the point is this, I know that I followed the upgrades instruction on VR's site and did nothing wrong. And instead of admitting that they somehow screwed up somewhere, they try to hide the fact that it is THEIR fault and want me to just fold and pick the Next Day Air (which costs US$49!!! she said that it just went up from US$45 today). Get this, I asked her what's her name and guess what? She said her name is Margaret Valentine!!! Anyway, I told her that the UPS-2 Day was (and still is) one shipping option. She said that I had missed a line saying that those rates do not apply to Canada. NO, IT DOES NOT SAY THAT ON THEIR WEB PAGE'S UPGRADE SECTION, EVEN NOW! So, it is not a simple matter of me just give way to their pressure tactics. It is a matter of principle! I did nothing wrong and they won't admit it. Anyway, she insisted that I missed that line (at that point, I did not argue with her because I wanted to check after I hang up).
After asking her over and over after what went wrong, I was so fed up that I told her "Excuse my language, but this really sucks." Guess what? She went on to say "No, I will not excuse that langauge. It is inappropriate at anytime... blah blah blah." I thought to myself "well, neither is the way VR is handling their own mistakes! By being rude to the customer? A return customer?" And give me a break, I did not say F... this F... that. She couldn't handle the word "sucks"? LOL Well, if they were to treat their customers with respect, then they would not get such comments, would they? And it is okay for them to keep barking the same question to me over and over again? Anyway, as soon as she was done, she said "well, VR will split the difference with you, so you pay US$30 for Next Day Air, okay?" I thought "What the hell is this? How she all of a sudden came to this solution?" Anyway, I went silent for a couple of seconds and agreed. At the end, I told her, I want to suggest to her that VR needs to correct that error. Again, first words out of her mouth were "I am sorry you missed it. It says on the Web page". So, I gave her the courtesy and did not argue with her. And we hung up.
So, right after the call, I went to VR's site to find out how the hell did I miss those comments about the S&H not applicable to Canada. Well, I checked, and SHE WAS WRONG! The upgrade page's order forms and instructions do not have that line ANYWHERE!!! So, my logical guess was that it must be on the online store page. I went through a mock purchase and sure enough, it does say on that page! BUT NOT IN THE UPGRADE SECTION!!! I was certain that I did not miss anything when I was preparing for the upgrade.
Well, I called her right back and just said "oh Margaret, I just went to your company's site and it does not say that in the upgrade section". Before I even finished the line, she said "I will check today, and if it is not there I will refund you the difference. It must be that our Web page guy forgot to put that line in that section." I said "okay, just wanted you to know" (And I said all that in a very calm voice). Then we hung up. The thing was, she was not even surprised by what I told her (judging by her reaction). Thus, I think she knows that there is a problem with the upgrade section, but all along she pretended that VR's Web site is 100% mistake-free.
I am actually more pissed off right now then when I was talking to her. It's kinda like some teachers who think they are always right, so they won't even bother to double check their own info. Then, when they find out that they are wrong, they won't admit it. I just couldn't stand the fact that she gave me crap and was rude to me right off the bat?! She is wrong and at no point in the conversation did she appologize to me, even after I confirmed that she/they were wrong! I mean, come on. It is also ridiculous for them not to even double check their own info on the Web site before she/they lay all the blame on me! My word of advice is that don't get strong-armed by companies that simply won't admit to their own faults/mistakes. And the sad part is that this is not the first experience of this kind that I have had with major companies--they simply will not admit to any fault on their part. Firestone tires, anyone? By the way, I encourage you guys to try a mock upgrade right now and see if they have corrected that yet. I bet you that the little chart that says UPS-2 Day is not available to Canada is still not there yet.
I just wanted to blow off some steam, and share my unexpected and shocking experience, that's all--a company that so many people praises in regards to customer service. I know that many of you have had great experiences with VR's customer service, but this is what I experienced today.
And no, I am not anti-VR even now.