Sandisk Working Very Hard To Lose Me As A Customer

I am a long time customer.  I have purchaed a total of 7 different Sansa mp3 players in various iterations.  I use my players for music, but primarily for podcasts.  I always preferred Sansa for this purpopse over all others (especially Apple products - I own an Iphone but much preferred the Sansa products for listening) because of their ease of integration with my PC and the ability to delete episodes from the player.

I was very pleased with my 8gb Fuze, which unfortunately was wrecked accidentally.  When I looked for a replacement, all that was available was the Fuze+.  I figured the upgrade would be a benefit.

I endured the difficulties of the early firmware, finding the unit very frustrating to use despite some nice features.  Nevertheless, it continued to improve with each firmware release.  I was very much looking forward to the next (the most recent) upgrade, which I anticipated would include the proper ordering of podcasts by track number.  Otherwise I was finding the Fuze+ to be satisfactory overall.

Then - as I was preparing a playlist for a party on July 16, the unit inexplicably died.  It was on and working, then suddenly it wasn’t.  Nothing could revive it.  Nothing at all.  I couldn’t even turn it on by plugging it in, so not only was my player gone, but also all the data. (Ironically the new firmware was released about a day later - apparently resolving my track ordering issue - but I have, so far, no way of knowing that for sure.)

I was very frustrated and annoyed, but at least I knew from previous experience that I would receive quick and responsive attention from Sandisk when I dealt with the return.  I was wrong.  Very, very wrong.

At first things seemed ok.  I contacted Sandisk, went through the problem, and they provided me with an RMA number.  That was July 21.  I returned the product to them on July 25.  It was confirmed as received by Sandisk on July 26.  As I was going on vacation for a few weeks, I just left it with Sandisk, assuming that the product would have been delivered at my home by the time I returned from vacation on August 16.  As much as I missed my player (I use it every day), and would certainly miss it on my vacation, I was prepared to live without it for a while.

I was flabbergasted to learn, upon my return, that the replacement unit had not arrived. I contacted Sandisk by telephone on August 18.  I was able to confirm that they had received the defective unit, but that no replacement had been sent out.  Despite the scripted apologies, I was provided with no coherent explanation of why the replcaement had not been sent. 

I was assured that the replacement would be sent within 24-48 hours.  Four days later, I called again to ask why I had received no confirmation that the unit had been sent.  Again, some poor fellow offered me no coherent explanation for the delay, and assured me, yet again, that the unit would be shipped immediately.

This time I did receive from Sandisk a tracking number for UPS.  When I checked the tracking number the day I received it, UPS provided me with the notice that “a shipping label” had been prepared on August 23, and that when the package was received from the shipper (Sandisk), I would recieve an update providing a date for delivery.

As of ten minutes ago, on August 29 - 6 days after the shipping label have been prepared - the message from UPS remains unchanged.  They have not received the package for shipment.  I have no idea when, OR IF, it will ever actually ship.

I have been without my player since July 16.  Sandisk has effectively done nothing to replace it.  Not only have I lost over 6 weeks of use (and counting) of the unit, I have lost the same amount of warranty time on whatever replacement I recieve.  I have no interest in contacting Sandisk again directly, as all I have ever received from the poor offshore call centre workers is worthless scripted platitudes, with no effort to address my particular concerns and frustrations.

In the meantime, I have discovered an Iphone App - Downcast - that addresses all of the reasons why I preferrred Sandisk products in the first place.  I can download any podcast directly to my phone, have all the metadata integrated seamlessly, organize them just as seamlessly, listen to podcasts IN ORDER and delete them directly when completed.  It is an absolutely fantastic piece of software that does everyhting it promises pefectly.  I have now become accustomed to using my Iphone for podcast listening, and, thanks to Downcast, frankly prefer it now to my previous experience with the Sandisk products.

So - to summarize - the failure of my Fuze+, coupled with Sandisk’s ridiculous inability to respond promptly (so far - at all) to my problem, has pushed me to another product that I would never have considered but for all of this.

I will continue to press Sansa for the completion of my RMA.  After all, I am out over $100.  However, I will keep using my Iphone for podcasts and, to a lesser extent, for music.  The replacement Fuze+, should it ever arrive, will be kept as a backup for my wife’s Fuze, if and when that ever fails. 

I have been a very, very, very loyal Sandisk customer for many years.  I have sung their praises far and wide to anyone who would listen, and poo-pooed the competition just as vigorously.  Now, thanks to this fiasco, those days are over.  I cannot imagine what Sandisk could ever do to get me back as a customer again.

I have excalated this to the RMA team at SanDisk HQ. It looks like there was an inventory issue with the Canadian warehouse. SanDisk is looking into the issue and you should be updated soon with shipping information. 

Forum Admin

slotmonsta

Nothing personal, but I’ll believe it when I see it.

Even if a replacement unit arrives, I am still out my time, my frustration, and the warranty time.  If the replacement is defective, I will be totally screwed if it fails, but not “in time”.

The other thing that must be addressed is the nearly useless information provided by your call centres, which I presume are situated somewhere outside of North America.  Every concern I raised, in particular my frustration at being cheated out of my warranty time, was met with “I am very sorry for your problem” and promises that, I now learn, had no prospect of being kept.  Nice words, but empty of meaning.  An effective call centre is one where each employee is actually empowered to help, rather than just given a script to follow.   As for the inventory issue, this is the first time I have received anything approaching an explanation (although still unsatisfactory) for the issue.  It is worth noting that nothing happened at all for the first three weeks until I called again.

If this was a restaurant dinner, I would not expect to be paying - this time or next.

As I said before - you have lost more than just a loyal customer that would have kept coming back.  You have also lost an effective and outspoken marketing messenger.  It is difficult for me to explain just how unhappy I am at the way that I have been treated.  My message about Sandisk products and customer service has most certainly changed.

Sorry to hear it and i hope Sansa makes things right with you

@Sansa i think he wants a free dinner…

Send him some McDonalds coupons lol

Replacement was delivered today, much to my surprise.

Wow! That slotmonsta really has pull! How’s THAT for service! :smileyvery-happy: