Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Quest for a Tablet

*sigh*  So I know my issues are never the 'worst out there', and no matter how I say it, somebody will say "there are those with X disease having to go without Y necessity".  But still, can't a guy get some luck?

Anyway, I bit the bullet, and ordered myself a tablet.  I debated long and hard over which to get.  There's literally thousands of blogs and videos to sort through and digest to understand the playing field out there.  It had boiled down to the Tab, the eeePad or the Xoom.

I eventually decided on the eeePad.  Chance for a keyboard dock, more battery, SD slot, etc.. etc.. etc..  This is not the point of my writing today.


Starts out with me placing the order on Futureshop.  They had me, they kept saying "only X number left", then it was "only (X-4) left", etc... until I just had to order it.  So I do and it takes a while before it says 'shipped'.

Now I knew going in, that it was over the July 1st weekend, so there would be some delays.  That wasn't my issue.  On the receipt it says "Purolator" and gives a tracking code.  When you click on the button that says "track this shipment" it gives you an error.  Futureshop's customer service agent was literally dumbfounded when I pointed it out.  He had no clue.  It was as if this was the first time he had ever seen an error message in his life.

What he suggested was call Purolator.  I call, wait forever on their automated system [these days there are no options to 'talk to a representative' as apparent as they use to be - you have to hunt for them], eventually somebody comes on and I give them the tracking number and I could literally hear their eyes roll as they say "that's a UPS shipment number, call them".  Thus ended that conversation.

So I check the number with UPS's website, and lo' and behold, it shows up.  Callooh Callay!

Eventually the day of shipment is upon me.  I was overjoyed as I saw that it was "out for shipment".  I could taste the honeycomb now.  [for those of you that don't know, Android OS uses a nickname of a dessert for their major release, each subsequent release uses the next alphabetical letter to pick a dessert:  cupcake, donut, eclair, froyo, gingerbread, honeycomb.  Next is ice cream sandwich].

I call UPS realizing that today nobody would be at the house for delivery.  I try UPS's customer service line... an eternity passes.  It's so disconcerting when there's no hold music.  Eventually I get somebody who says they try all day and I may not even be delivered to until the end of the day anyways.

So I wait... then I call the local store.  Figuring, maybe they know the driver, maybe he could detour to my office to drop it off.  Never know.  She then tells me a unique thing ... in Thunder Bay, apparently UPS has no trucks, so they use Purolator.

Follow this:

  • I order from future shop

  • they say purolator's shipping, but give a UPS number

  • UPS doesn't actually ship within town, but uses Purolator

I feel like a moebius strip here... of craziness.

The nice gal on the phone re-iterates the same thing that, maybe they will deliver after work, and if not, I could get the slip they left behind to go to the Puro depot to pick it up.

I feel better... somewhat.

I get home, there's no slip... so I just have to wait right?  They haven't delivered, so they'll be around shortly.  Just to be on the safe side I call Puro... no local number, and a bazillion minutes on the phone waiting I get anxious and hang up - call the UPS store again.  A new girl now tells me that the Puro trucks finish all runs at like 2pm.  So they must have come by... but there's no slip.

Only one way to find out - drive down.

At the depot, it's like they never expect customers to walk in ... ever.  I'm met with somewhat curious stares.  I had thought this would be easy.  Good lord no...

Eventually as they're talking and mash some buttons on a computer they come up with "that truck is just coming in now" and find my package.


I had a ball playing with it.  It was literally what I expected.  So much fun.

Until I noticed the dead pixel.  I could have lived with it, but it woulda just stared at me like the tell tale heart everytime I used it.  But, then there were 2... then 3 and 4.

Now I was in a conundrum.  Futureshop no longer listed the item on their site, so I couldn't order a replacement.  What to do?  The Galaxy Tabs were now backordered until mid-August... and the Xoom was $100 more.

Eventually I determined that Staples carried them in the store, so I returned it to Futureshop.  That was an ordeal.  I brought everything I had.  Apparently I missed something... the receipt.  I tried telling them that that was everything I got, but they didn't believe me.  I even brought the bubble wrap!!  I tried bringing up the order on my phone, but it was giving me an error.  Eventually they let me use their demo mac computer [seems wrong that the only thing that has gone right in this story happened on a Mac... ptoo!] to bring up the receipt.  Eventually I'm able to get my refund.   Oi.

So I go to Staples [right next door] to get my new one.  Eventually they bring out my 32GB and I ask if I can open it first to check it for defects.  While he starts doing that he mentions the warranty and I sorta get cajoled into it, so I say "get the 16GB instead, so that way I'll get the warranty".  He gets it... it has already been opened.  There's no packing material [you know, that film around it etc..], there's greasy fingerprints on it... but it's fine.  Hrmm...  While getting it, he finds that they have a dock too.  So he brings it out and we fiddle with it [it too has been previously opened].gallery_left

So, I'm leery, but good to go.  While he's ringing it up, he starts talking about the warranty - where I find it's not what I was expecting, nor how it was sold to me originally - so I have him remove the warranty option, and bring back the 32GB.  There's some raised eyebrows [apparently reneging on purchasing the optional warranty is a faux pas], but I muscle through the stares and take my purchase and leave.


It's then I realized I DIDN'T CHECK THE 32GB MODEL... but they're closing now, and besides - I'm sure it's fine.  Upon getting to my parents' for dinner I open it up... it's not fine.  There's 4 scuff marks on the glass panel inside.


No luck for me.

Tomorrow I will bring it back to Staples for a straight refund.  I'll have had it for less than 24hrs, so hopefully it shouldn't be an issue - however, I know Staples, there'll be blood, but I'll get my refund.

The question is... now what?  Get the 16GB that I know is fine, then get the warranty?  It's the Tablet I wanted.   Do I return it and preorder the Galaxy?

So fraught with mixed emotions here..

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