Skip to comments.Apple's Genius Bar Rocks
Posted on 11/27/2007 1:33:54 PM PST by Swordmaker
I'm a Windows laptop user but keep thinking about switching to a mac, maybe next year. So for me the Genius Bar at Apple stores was something that I never paid enough attention to, again because I'm not a mac user. Today that changed as I made my first visit to the Genius Bar and it left such a positive impression on me that I thought I'd share my experience.
It all started this morning with my iPhone. For some reason the bottom 1/4 of my screen would not respond to any touching. Powering off/on, restarting, using various applications - nothing changed. It got to a point that in the dialer I was unable to hit the call button. The entire horizontal area across the bottom simply became a dead spot- not cool.
So I called at&t and they told me to call Apple iPhone support. 5 minutes later I was talking to a rep at Apple and after explaining my situation he told me to go to an Apple store and talk to someone in the Genius Bar to get more help. So I hopped in my car and drove to downtown San Francisco and walked over to the Apple store there. Walked in and was immediately greeted by one of their new concierge people (wearing the blue shirts). I quickly explained what the problem was and he escorted me to an Apple store employee (Dan) who then took me upstairs to the Genius Bar. He talked to them and got me on their standby list to be helped. During this time I felt like a VIP but you know what, I was just some customer who came in with a problem with my iPhone and they treated me as a friend - amazing.
Waited 15 minutes and then was able to speak to one of the knowledgeable Genius Bar reps. I showed her the problem on my iPhone and she then asked if I had everything backed up. "Yep, go ahead and do what you need to" I told her and then she reset my iPhone. After the reset it still was showing the dead spot behavior on the screen so she said "no problem, we'll swap this out with a new one." 10 minutes later she handed me my new iPhone (took out my SIM card and verified with at&t through iTunes that this was my new iPhone) and had me sign a receipt. Signed it and off I went with my new iPhone with the entire screen working, as it should ;o)
Got home, connected to my laptop and opened up iTunes. It connected to at&t to verify my device and asked me if I wanted to restore my settings and I said yes. About 10 minutes later my iPhone was ready to be synced so I synced my contacts, calendar, photos, video and music - this took about 30 minutes total (lots of music).
Guess what, in about 3 hours I went from having a semi-functioning iPhone to a brand new one with all of my settings and files the exact same way. Even my wallpaper, SMS messages, recent calls and voice messages are all there. The fact that this all worked and barely put a dent in my day is fantastic.
What I'm really impressed about is the level of service and attention to personal touch that the Apple store employees and Genius Bar team have. Now I know that if I did have a mac laptop that I would get the same, professional level of service. Honestly I can't think of too many other stores or brands that have that level of customer satisfaction. Kudos Apple!
Bill Perry is an evangelist for mobile and devices at Adobe and focuses on the Americas, APAC and Japan regions
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The other nice thing about the Genius Bar is that you can make an appointment via the internet and know what time you will be waited on. This is convenient for me as I’m an hour’s drive from the nearest Apple store.
Thanks. Reminds me of a situation when I returned my Motorola i860 phone as it kept cutting out reception wise, and they just took my phone apart and added a new antenna. I brought it back a week later as it was wordse than before, they took it apart again until I said, hey Im payingfor insurance on the thing how bout giving me a new phone. They said they don’t do that unless it is lost or stolen.
Next visit: "Hey, I lost my cell phone!"
But - can I get a beer at the Genius Bar?
I was thinking of trying that but there was a $50 fee so I nixed that idea. I just bought a new Moto Q which was a better phone than the i860 anyway.
my son is on the genius bar, thanks. I take that as a compliment
On the other hand, I have an LG phone that about a couple of years old, and has never needed any more service than me taking off the battery and putting it back on.
Sounds like the Iphone may have reliability issues.
You must be "living right", because my experience with LG phones (received as a replacement from Cingular for a broken Motorola - went through three defective LG phones before they decided to try something else, family who have had LG phones, students who have tried LG phones, and friends). The vast majority of LG phones I have seen or know someone who has owned one have been garbage. I won't go so far as to say they are 100% junk - but my experience is just that.
So be happy yours has been basically trouble free (except why are you having to remove and replace the battery?).
We’ve been to the Genius Bar a couple of times and have always left very pleased and impressed.
Did you ever try to take out the battery? I've had several brand of cell phones, and it solves most problems. I think I learned the trick on a Sony.
You have missed the point of the story. It isn’t about reliability of an individual gadget. It is about the customer experience when one of those gadgets gets whacked out.
No electronics maker has zero failure rates. But all too many have no customer service, and rather than the customer becoming a “raving fan”, he becomes a detractor of the product.
Apple doesn’t have that problem. Some of the biggest Apple “evangelists” are recent switchers—from Windows to Mac especially.
This article is about the “halo” effect if nothing else.
Real men use Linux.
But why would they need a ‘genius bar’ if their equipment is reliable? I haven’t had to take my cell phone in for service, My AMD based machine has never needed service; my Pentium machine never needed service; Even my old 386 and Osborne never needed to be taken in for service.
If it is a difficulty of use problem instead of a hardware problem, perhaps Apple should start loading XP on their machines.
Re: why genius bar if equipment is reliable.
I have never has to return one of my Macs to Apple for repair either. That doesn’t mean the don’t have their share of broken or defective products. However, Apple has the lowest repair rate of any computer maker and by far the highest customer satisfaction rate. For the iPhone it’s in the low 90s percentile. The closest smartphone is at 52%.
With 25,000,000 OSX Macs, 110,000,000 iPods, and almost 2 million iPhones in the installed base even 1% failure rate (it’s higher than that) would mean a potential 1,370,000 users needing tech support. Apple provides much of it free of charge at their Genius Bars. Would you prefer to pay $80 an hour from the PC oriented Geek Squad?
As for usage issues, OSX is far easier to use and more reliable than Windows XP so why would Apple install a buggy, driver problem laden OS?
Yeah, but they only serve Guinness.
You’re joking! That would be too cool.
Of course I’m joking. But that would be cool!