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Showing posts with label Note 7. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Note 7. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 is Impossible to Return

This Note 7 crap is so stupid.

Neither of my Samsung Galaxy Note 7 (the original I received, nor the replacement) has caught fire, exploded or even gotten hot.  I mean, not in the slightest.  It's hard for me to understand the issue at all, it's barely warm once I remove it from the charger.  All my other phones have been much. much hotter almost all the time.

I feel that I am being punished for wanting the very best phone on earth.  There is nothing wrong with my phone, and almost everything is right about it.

Sure, there are some curiously idiotic flaws to address...
  1. The note platform is meant for note taking and individual creativity.  But the curved edge surfaces are completely unreliable writing surfaces acting as an obstacle, a problem doubled with no touch sensitivity.
    • The curves are more like speed bumps, disallowing freeform drawing, sketching, painting or note-taking.
    • It is absolutely impossible to write to the edge of the screen (so that artists cannot digitally use the whole canvas in drawing or photo editing apps).
  2. Because of the first obvious flaw, one would think that this second flaw would not exist by giving the user an option to have the traditional Note flat screen (for function), but no, Samsung decided that it was more important to be pretty, so for the first time ever, we don't get to decide which one we want, and we have form (over function).
  3. The curved glass makes it impossible to apply Gorilla glass, or any tempered glass protector that will work.  Which wouldn't be a big deal, if the screen glass was gorilla glass already, but it's not.
  4. The SIM card shares the same cradle as the microSDcard, so when removing or changing out the microSDcard to plug it into your PC and download the photos, your phone is incapable of receiving or making phone calls.
  5. In order to unlock the microSDcard tray to remove or replace it, you have to carry around a special key. I put it on my key chain (makes sense, right?). Except for the fact that when I reach into my pocket to grab my keys, I am often poking myself with that key (right under the fingernail too, OUCH).  Guess what?  My part-time job is as a delivery driver, and I am constantly going for the keys in my pocket.
Of course, I need a smartphone for all of my jobs, as well as my businesses and self employment.  But I have been in and out of the Verizon store (pictured just below) so many times that it is ridiculous.

I have decided I needed to turn the phone in, even though I don't want to, but only because if it ever did catch fire in a public place, I might get sued.  

But, I can't return it...  

I was at Verizon a week ago getting answers to my questions.  I still had a couple of Galaxy Note 7 cases that I had to return to Best Buy, as Verizon wasn't going to reimburse me for them.  And there is the matter of the fast Samsung wireless charger stand I am not sure whether I will return or not.

This weekend, I purchased a used Samsung Galaxy Note 3 through Swappa.  I hope to receive it, soon.  I also went to the Geek app, Amazon and other online shopping sites and bought a bunch of Note 3 accessories, like screen protectors and cases, even a Qi charger and pad, extra battery chargers and a new battery.  All because I will not be without a real Note platform phone (and the Note 3 was actually the last real Note, though the 4 was good, I won't be able to replace the battery easily in the older Note 4 phones, so I chose the Note 3).

But, I still need that camera that I upgraded my previous old Note for.  Yup, that 4K UHD recording, super sharp high resolution photography kind of camera.  So, I'll grab a Google Pixel.  

There, I've decided.  I went back to the store yesterday and told them so.  They won't take the phone.  

They won't take the phone back.  Now, last week, they would've taken it back, but I had some big decisions to make.  I am going to be tied to the next phone I get for at least two years.  And there just isn't anything like the Note.

I have had messages telling me to take the phone back to my carrier.  Verizon is my carrier.  I pre-ordered my Samsung Galaxy Note 7 at this store.  I gave-up my Note 7 at this store.  I received my replacement Note 7 at this store.  

I was told to go online to the Verizon website and sign-up for the recall.  I did.  But I can't make modifications to my account, because my wife, the account owner that is paying this bill, hasn't made me an account manager.  

So, we log into her account on her phone in the My Verizon app.  But that doesn't let us do anything, and we are constantly having to re-login even though we have "Remember Me" checked when we log in.  Its just strange.  Who thought of this inept UI?

Yet, according to the FAQ that we keep getting sent the link to, I have to go to my carrier retailer where I purchased the Galaxy Note7, the Verizon Wireless store where I not only pre-ordered the thing, but also replaced the Note7.

So, I will go to the store when they open later today, and maybe they can get me squared-away.  I realize that I'm supposed to be sent a fire-proof box with fire-proof gloves... how dramatic.  But this thing works fine.  It's even cool to the touch.  

Certainly, the problem isn't the battery.  It is more likely some screw-up in the assembly.  One has to wonder if some joker decided they would add a little scrap of metal shaving somewhere just to make the short-out happen.  

But this is a sickening migraine headache.  I have a life.  I have been back and forth to the Verizon store 7 times in pursuit of securing a Samsung Galaxy Note7, and I can't get the job done, as if I keep it I am setting myself up for liability issues, even higher insurance rates.  And if I could keep it without those worries, I would, only now I have returned the 2 Note7 cases that I bought and will never be able to replace them because no one will sell the Note 7, ever again.

This doesn't take into the account all the online research I have had to do to find an acceptable replacement for my primary phone (that I just bought and did all sorts of research on, yet settled for anyway).  Anything good hasn't been released to the market, yet.

I can't win.  And it is Samsung that has betrayed my loyalty by making me return the thing.  So, no thank you, Samsung, you traitor.  I was dealing with all your lack of vision, and trying to be happy anyway, but there is nothing out there that compares to the Note.  So I'll pre-order the Google Pixel XL 128 GB and just be happy with the best camera, and hope that my used Note 3 gets here soon in good condition, as described.

On top of that, I will steer the rest of my family away from ever buying Samsung products again.  By taking away my Note 7, I will guarantee you that when it comes time for my wife, son and mother to upgrade from their current Galaxy S6 phones, it won't be to a Samsung device.  I think they will like the iPhone more and more, or perhaps they will like my Google Pixel XL.  But never a Samsung, ever again.  Not even a new Samsung TV, tablet or camera will enter this house, now.

Samsung, you have spit all over my loyalty.  Goodbye!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Stupid 'Smart' Phones

I had been carrying around a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 for nearly 4 years, now.  It was time to upgrade, and Samsung finally announced that it wouldn't even make a Note 6 model, but that I could pre-order the Galaxy Note 7 on August 2nd.

The jump in the model number wasn't so irritating, but these kind of antics always seem to prove that whoever it is in charge of branding has their head up their butt.  Take the advance release of Windows 7, which was called Vista.  It wasn't finished and it wasn't up-to-snuff, but Microsoft had to do something to get a new version out, because Windows 7 (not called that at the time,) was taking forever.  Since the release of Windows 7, Microsoft has dumped all sorts of crappy OSes on us, 8, 8.1, and then the version skip... Windows 10, just so that they can seem as advanced as Apple, with its Mac OS X and iOS 10.

I don't personally know anyone that is happy with 8, 8.1 or even 10.  It seems that we have all settled into Windows 10 despite the fact that we prefer and miss Windows 7, just because it's so important to keep up-to-date.  But it isn't a very good OS at all, with only minute updates and flaunts a boring wardrobe in comparison to Windows 7.

This kind of waffling on versioning is purposely intended to confuse.  I suppose 8.1 counts as 9, now?  It's all just a marketing gimmick.  But there is no device on earth more gimmicky than the Samsung Galaxy Note 7.  Samsung, in its infinite wisdom, totally disregarded what the platform was all about.  The Note was designed for artistic and creative people, and for those who enjoyed using a pen, including note-taking students and business people.  Yet, it wasn't just good at what it did, it was clever.  "Was" being the operative word.

I went in to my local corporate Verizon store to check-out the device on August 2nd, 2016.  But in hindsight, the device wasn't actually made available to me since the SPen was missing.  Had I had the opportunity to try the SPen, I would not have pre-ordered this unit and awaited something better.

But since Samsung, in its infinite wisdom to give us pretty instead of uiseful, decided to not even allow anyone to choose whether they bought a curved edge screen or a full sized flat screen model, for the very first time ever, they effectively turned the device into junk because the curved glass is a completely unreliable writing surface that becomes an obstacle to the user.

On top of that, since the edges of the glass are curved, the width of the glass is measured disproportionately, and this is further complicated by the fact that most of the curved edge of the touch screen is completely useless.  This type of idiocy reveals that the Note 7 is no longer an artist's platform, and was never meant to be such since you cannot .  The Note 7 was simply a bad gimmick that further blackened the Note platform (irreplaceable battery in the Note 4, no microSDcard slot in the Note 5).

Perhaps, if Samsung offered a flatscreen Note 7 model, with touch sensitivity from edge to edge, it could have saved a great deal of face.  I know I didn't want a curved edge display, nor have I ever.  I was simply forced into it, because I knew and respected the Note platform.

Surely, Samsung was trying to take the Note mainstream.  But that curved edge isn't even slightly useful and the sacrifice of functionality for a useless pretty form on a platform that relies on a stable writing surface (functionality).  Look at it this way, I bought the Note 2 because it was a large screen phablet.  As an aspiring artist and as a website and media designer, I could easily take notes, I could draw on photos, I could even pen a sketch or illustrate an idea to a client, easily.

But there is much more to it than that.  Unfortunately, the Koreans, Chinese, even the Japanese don't get us because their perspective is so small.  Perhaps it is hard for their small hands to hold a large phablet?  But I am 6'2", my son is 6'3" going on 6'4".  My wife is 5'8".  We are demonstrably taller, and larger, than our oriental world neighbors.  They don't understand our needs because of their smaller, compact perspective.

This has been proven again and again over time as you see department stores sell out of the limited larger sizes of clothes they send us, such as 40", 38" and 36" waist jeans, while we can't seem to get rid of the 28", 29", 30" & 31" smaller sizes that always wind-up on clearance because we have too many of them.  Girls and women's T-shirt clearance racks are full of XS & S sizes, because they send us more of them when we actually need more of the larger sizes.  And no matter who complains, these Asian companies are always sending out styles in lots with sizes that they deem are appropriate no matter the feedback they get.

Despite the  media and marketers poking fun at our big phones, the phablet platform is great for larger people with stout fingers.  When I moved from the tiny Droid X to the Samsung Galaxy Note 2, I could actually type efficiently, effectively without near as many typos.  It was literally an answer to a prayer.  I couldn't've been happier, to tell you the truth.

But after almost 4 years with a Note 2, it was past time to upgrade.  I wanted to upgrade top the Note 4 as soon as my 2 year contract was done, but the battery wasn't removable anymore, so I waited until the Note 5, but that was a terrible phone because I will definitely take high resolution photos and 4K UltraHD video, and it didn't even have enough memory, or any storage card, to accommodate that.  Just FullHD alone is about 3 to 4 GB an hour.  I easily take 20 minutes to an hour of video shooting the local deer and wildlife, every day on the bike trail.  The Note 5 only came in a 32 GB model and there was no microSDcard support, or any removable storage, for that matter.  It just wasn't practical.

For some reason, the corporate giants that produce phones think that using the cloud is perfectly acceptable, but its not unless you live in New York, Chicago or LA and never leave the city.  Out here in the real rural U.S. that people call "God's country", or disparagingly refer to as "fly-over country", neither internet nor cell coverage is reliable.  Plus, our data limits are curbed by the carriers themselves so that using the cloud, even just for backup, is impractical.

Certainly, those of us who require a removable memory card expansion slot have been left in the cold.  But it isn't just that the wild (mid)west has spotty coverage, if you are a real serious player in the scope of technology, as a corporate entity you are looking to expand and promote your brand.  It's an absolute requirement of your stock holders.

But you cannot expand into rural and developing areas without addressing their needs, and where does Apple, Google, etc.. have to expand its elitist flagship market but into the business minds and leaders of rural, developing and third world areas?

Oh sure, you can record your friends and family in a lower resolution.  But technology marches on and 640x480 video is now a tiny window on a PC screen and we miss out even sooner if we record video at anything less than the optimum resolution.  Eventually, my grandkid will say "Why did grandpa record at such a tiny resolution?  I can barely see you!" That, if he can actually still play the video I recorded of my son.

Of course we need to photograph and record stuff at the highest resolution possible.  We see all those old time photos of our ancestors and wish they were better.  Now the very formats we recorded our kids only 10 or 20 years ago are marginalized.

What Samsung has been trying to do with the Note platform is ruining a good thing.  Every Samsung Galaxy Note since the Note 3 has been a march down hill.  The brand was originally an impressive platform, but now that it is obvious that the Note 7 is shorting out, it seems that Samsung itself has finally killed off what was once the best flagship platform ever produced.

There just isn't anything that compares.  This is clear when I look around for a replacement, now that my Note 7 recall replacement phone is being recalled.
  1. Nothing comes with a multi-pressure sensitive stylus that slides neatly into the phone.  NOTHING!
  2. Apple is the only real competition to Samsung, but they refuse to support any sort of removable storage solution and require everyone to use the cloud.  And now Apple is removing the stereo earphone jack so that we have to carry around a dongle to listen to our MP3s or even swipe credit cards for our businesses?  UNACCEPTABLE!  
  3. Apple offers a pen, but it's easily lost without a dock in the phone to keep it.
  4. Motorola put out the modular phone, the Moto Droid Z, which looked very interesting, until I learned that it no longer offers a stereo earjack, same as Apple's iPhone 7.  Why?  I have both PayPal Here and Square credit card processing I need to use, without a dongle.  Plus, I love to listen to my now rather large library of Google Play Music.  Again, UNACCEPTABLE!  
  5. Google's Nexus and Pixel phones are also absolute crap for anyone in a rural setting because they are also leaving out those of us that require a removable storage solution.  The Drive is nice, but we need access to it to use it in rural areas, and that is spotty, around here.
  6. Hey, I might be an amateur photo and video buff, but that's primarily because I don't want to carry around a lot of gear and I enjoy my mobility, on the bike trail, through the parks, having a camera phone should work for me.  But no one offers anything good, anymore.
There was a day when a company could see the demand of consumers and answer it, but without a Note, I am quite F'ed.  

I'll send my replacement Note 7 in when someone comes out with a phone to fill the void that ruining the Note platform has left behind.  I am not letting it go until there is a solution out there for me, somewhere.

My Note 2 died after pre-ordering the Note 7, and I have to wonder if Samsung zapped it on purpose.  

Has Samsung's reputation faltered?  You bet it has, miserably.  Most likely, it is unrecoverable from here on out.  As a family, we have purchased the following Samsung products based on our happiness with the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 and 3 different Samsung Galaxy S 3 phones;
  • 3 more Samsung Galaxy S 6 phones (and of these, 2 users are not happy without the microSDcard support).
  • The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 (it's going to be recalled a second time without a phone to fill its niche?).  I wonder who's going to pay for the 2 cases I bought for it, this time?
  • The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Wireless Standing Fast Charger (as I don't want another Galaxy now, it's not going to help me out anymore, will I get my money back?).   
  • A Samsung hands-free Bluetooth earpeice (which works really well).
  • A 2014 Samsung 32" SHDTV (and it's been my experience that the 2014 SHDTVs are forgotten as far as apps and support go).
  • A Samsung Galaxy CORE Prime (that although is tiny & slow, it has come in quite handy as a second line after I upgraded from the old cellphone when my Note 2 was zapped, especially with having to keep exchanging phones every week or so, and NEEDING a smart phone as a simple requirement for both my job and my business).
  • A Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7" (that I intended to use specifically as a remote for the above 32" SHDTV, but Samsung killed support for it).
  • A Samsung stainless steel french door refrigerator (we actually bought a cooler, better model, but the delivery men switched it on us for this for this stupid model "because the 2 drawer model won't make it through the door").
I think its time that our family boycott all Samsung products, now.

UPDATE: And yet, after searching for well over 3 days now, it seems the only acceptable choice is an older Note (# 3 or 4).  

It's a shame, my father was in the Korean war.  I expected great things, and was happy to see them do well, but now it is clear that they can't deliver and are just taking advantage of us.

That's my take, and I do feel betrayed.  I am a brand expert.  I know this will destroy Samsung's reputation.  But the real reason it does, is because of our experience with them.  Our original buys were awesome devices.  After that, we kept up the loyalty, despite mediocre user experiences owning everything else we have purchased from them.  Despite my very vocal input and feedback, Samsung ceases to think about what I, or any consumer wants.  

It's just a shame.  

Yes, they could come back, but it is obvious that there is a lot for the company to deal with.  It would require that they produce quality technology that people want, and from my experience, they are no longer capable of that.  This debacle with the Note 7 is specifically for trying to mainstream the Note flagship and put it into more people's hands.  But they ruined the platform with 'pretty' over practical performance.  

I certainly have given-up on them, completely.

UPDATE (Oct 13): Although I am considering a Google Pixel phone, it is a stretch for me, without any removable storage solution.  But, at least it has an earjack, ahem... Apple & Motorola... AHEM!

I am also playing with the idea of getting an iPhone and an Aonit Pixel Stylus, but it doesn't seem to support the iPhone 6S Plus or iPhone 7 Plus, yet?  There's always something!  Isn't there?

In the end my only choice might to get an old Note until someone answers the call to provide the flagship phone we all need, complete with a great camera, a multi-pressure sensitive stylus, the microSDcard slot and the old handy earphone jack.

UPDATE (Oct 14): What happens if I turn in the phone and can't find a replacement right away, do I lose my ancient easy-to-remember phone number?  There are just too many unanswered questions and one news program says one thing while another says something different.