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Old 08-29-2011, 07:11 AM   #1
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Extremely disappointed in Kobo's replacement policy

I purchased a Kobo Touch which was unfortunately defective. It stopped working after one day of use. The screen simply went blank and nothing could help.

I live overseas, so I couldn't go to a store and replace it and had to rely on Kobo's customer service. It took some time until I got a reply from them, and then until they said all options were explored and I should send them my device for replacement.

However, they said that after checking if my KT was indeed defective or broken by my action (I can understand the need for this), they would send me back a REFURBISHED replacement device.
In addition, they do not support international shipping, so I had to pay for both shipping my defective device back to them and for shipping their replacement device to me.

At the end of it all, after paying $140 for a new device plus 3 times international shipping, what I get is a refurbished device two months later.
I expected better than this.
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Old 08-29-2011, 07:18 AM   #2
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This is what pretty much all companies do. If you send in a device for a warranty repair, you'll get back a refurbished unit of a similar age. It doesn't mean there'll be anything wrong with it.

As far as the shipping goes: that's the consequence of buying a reading device outside the region in which it's officially sold, I'm afraid.

I honestly don't think you have anything to be disappointed about (other than the fact that it stopped working, of course!).
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Old 08-29-2011, 07:42 PM   #3
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I disagree.

I don't have a problem with the refurbished replacement KT, but I think having to pay for all the shipping is a bit rough.
After all the customer bought a brand new item that should have just worked. It stopped doing so through no fault of his or hers, while still being under warranty. I would accept having to pay for shipping it back to Kobo, but they should then cover the shipping cost back to the customer.
I also disagree with the "outside the region in which it's officially sold" bit.
He or she probably bought it from Borders which officially shipped internationally at the time. It's not like it was done via a 3rd party forwarder or similar.

In summary:
1. Refurbished replacement: ok
2. Shipping cost to Kobo: ok, but not great service
3. Shipping cost backt to customer: not ok

Just my opinion
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Old 08-29-2011, 07:55 PM   #4
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This is fairly standard. Most companies, for any product, but especially an electronic one, will ask you to return the broken unit. If it costs over 100 bucks or so, they will probably return a refurbished unit.

There is nothing wrong with professionally refurbished units. I buy them, as a matter of course, because they're cheaper and they're just as good. If it's been gone over by the manufacturer, it is as good as a new unit.

The one thing I will say is that they should offer to pay return shipping. That's a bit cheap on their part.

Last edited by SmokeAndMirrors; 08-29-2011 at 08:02 PM.
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Old 08-29-2011, 09:14 PM   #5
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Kobo is deffinitely NOT the only company to do this. So don't get too upset over it.
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Old 08-29-2011, 09:19 PM   #6
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microsoft and the 360 is a big one you can compare to. especially when they had the red ring of death problem, people were expected to pay the shipping. they changed their policy up after that but at the beginning it was similar.
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Old 08-29-2011, 10:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by siraks View Post
microsoft and the 360 is a big one you can compare to. especially when they had the red ring of death problem, people were expected to pay the shipping. they changed their policy up after that but at the beginning it was similar.
Microsoft was lucky they weren't forced to recall and replace all those early Xbox360's (which to be honest they should have as it had known defects that manifested at very high rates) - (to my mind) the whole replacement policy came about to stem off the inevitable lawsuits that could have followed (and it was cheaper than the alternative - full recall & replace).

As to Kobo, like dafrizz I'm a little disappointed at the return shipping also, though as others overall I'm not surprised. Having heard some pretty favourable (re: glowing) reports of Amazon's support for Kindle hardware (some owners in AU having Amazon just sending them a replacement unit with no need to ship their failed unit back) it is likely an area they can improve along with their general customer support response times (for email - unsure phone?) which a few people have expressed lackluster experiences.

Oh and as to refurbished, with the device failing only after a day (pretty close to DOA if you ask me) I'd like a new replacement also (be the smarter thing to do from a perception point of view to counter such an early fault), though I know this is also pretty standard, and if the refurb is as-new looking there isn't much to complain about.

I'd personally contact Kobo (rather than just posting here). Maybe they'd be willing to give you some book gift/credit to offset your less than steller experience.

Try;
tweeting -> http://twitter.com/kobo
or posting on -> http://getsatisfaction.com/kobo

or use Skype Out etc.. to phone their customer support number.

Any feedback and subsequent improvements they can make is better for all of us.

Last edited by molman; 08-29-2011 at 11:08 PM. Reason: not speak good :)
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Old 08-29-2011, 10:44 PM   #8
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Maybe refurbished is tested better so a little less likely to have problems?
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Old 08-30-2011, 09:08 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baggins View Post
I purchased a Kobo Touch which was unfortunately defective. It stopped working after one day of use. The screen simply went blank and nothing could help.

I live overseas, so I couldn't go to a store and replace it and had to rely on Kobo's customer service.
I'm sorry you had a bad experience but, as others have said, buying something outside of the region it is sold in, you can't expect free warranty service.

You didn't mention why you didn't return it to the original retailer? Did you pay cash for it?
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Old 08-31-2011, 04:35 AM   #10
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It's fine. I'm taking it easy. So long as I'll have a working eReader I'll be happy. I still like Kobo as a whole, and look forward to have a wokring KT.

My disappointment stemmed from expecting to have a new device, and never actually having that. The one I bought worked for only one day, and the one I'll get won't be new. If it's standard policy to send a replacement device of the same age as the one replaced, then that age is brand new in my case.

Regarding the original retailer, it was Borders, so it's not very practical dealing with them.

I just hope I manage to receive my replacement device before I go travelling in 3 weeks.
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Old 08-31-2011, 04:48 AM   #11
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I do agree with you that, if the device failed within a day of purchase, it should be replaced by a new one.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:26 AM   #12
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I have to agree with this.
I think that if the device fails on it's first day then it should be replaced with a new one. baggins paid for a new Kobo not a refurbished one and he should have received a new one that worked.
I also think that Kobo should have paid to ship the replacement to you as presumably you have already paid for them to ship the faulty one.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:32 AM   #13
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I also think that Kobo should have paid to ship the replacement to you as presumably you have already paid for them to ship the faulty one.
I believe that this is what they do do if you live in an area in which the Kobo is officially sold. The issue here is that the OP lives in a place that the Kobo is not officially sold. That being the base, one can't really expect Kobo to bear the cost of international shipping.
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Old 08-31-2011, 09:44 PM   #14
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@HarryT: Don't think that is quite fair as Borders US did sell it to him. (not like he got on eBay or such).

Its a bit of an odd situation as it probably should have gone back to Borders US who should have issued a new replacement. Their current situation makes things a little abnormal.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:41 PM   #15
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Well Borders in the US officially sold me a Kobo. They certainly knew where I lived and they charged me extra for the international post to get it to me. I didn't do anything sneaky to get my Kobo - no false address, no forwarding company.
I assume baggins did the same as he indicated that he was initially charged international postage.
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