Browsing Category

Other Reviews

Nokia Customer Care Sucks

Just a cry for help!
If you have had some bad experience with the Nokia Customer Care, leave a comment.
If you can help me by getting my phone fixed under warranty, please, please do let me know.
My phone *IS* actually under warranty but those dumb nuts at the Nokia Care Center are out to rip me off!
Thanks again.
If you do not fall in either one of those categories above, you can safely skip this post.
Though a dig post would be useful 😉
Here goes:
Nokia is an excellent phone company. It really is.
We have had about 6 Nokia handsets in our house – and all of them have been rock solid and given brilliant performance – even under severe conditions.
I just love the UI of the phones. They are not over the top – just simple, intuitive and gets the job done bloody well. I’m a fan for life and would not dream of getting any other phone.
But that’s where the honeymoon ended a while ago.
God forbid something happens to your phone – you will be at the mercy of one of the worst customer care units you can experience in your lifetime. Even the government run BSNL customer care units are friendlier and more informative than the morons that populate the Nokia Care service centers.
I purchased 2 Nokia E51s for me and my dad last Feb in 2008. The phone is a gem.
It’s a perfect business phone and there is nothing that you cannot do on it. I fell in love with it the moment I read the feature list on the back of the box.
However, this phone has also been the reason for much pain and suffering.
In June the same year (2008), the message key of my phone suddenly stopped working. It just wouldn’t respond. I ignored the problem as I was not using that key anyways and continued to use the phone – I was able to live with it.
The problem really took off later when by September 4 of the number keys stopped working completely. They would start responding erratically every now and then – but mostly they wouldn’t work at all. So, I was stuck with a brand new 15,0000 bucks phone with the number 5, 6, 8 and 9 keys not responding at all. I could not message any longer – nor could I add contacts to my address book or even dial numbers not within my address book.
I decided to take it to one of the Nokia Customer Care centers (Kaustubh Telecom at Golibar Maidan) in Pune. After checking the piece, to my utter shock and surprise, the guy informed me that the phone was no longer under warranty as the problem I was facing was due to water getting into the handset.
I assured the engineer that no such thing had happened as I was extremely careful about keeping the cellphone dry. It had never gotten wet in the rain and what he said was impossible.
When I told him to show me the water damage, he refused to do so.
He however told me that he would try to fix my phone using one method which would cost me 350 bucks. The other method would be to replace my keypad which would cost me 1200 bucks. I opted for method 1.
He took the phone inside, tried something but could not fix it.
When I later called the manager of the shop and asked him to fix my phone under warranty, he started arguing with me. He hung up on me yelling that his engineers were trained and if they said there was a water problem, there was one.
I left the center completely disillusioned. When I got home, I realized that the engineer had even managed to crack the body of my phone by screwing in the screws real tight.
I kept using the phone as it was – just receiving calls and making calls using the address book.
I later learnt that there were a number of Nokia Care centers in Pune and that Kaustubh Telecom wasn’t the only one.
I decided to go and try another one – at F.C. Road.
On showing the handset there, the engineer informed me that the base plate of the keypad has been scratched by a very sharp object and hence will need to be replaced.
This will definitely not come under warranty as there is a physical damage to the internal parts.
On informing them that I had shown it to Kaustubh Telecom – their own Care Center branch, they told me to take it up with them – which I am sure is going to be of no use.
One more shocking thing is that these Nokia Care centers refuse the warranties of 90% of the phones which come to them on the grounds of water seepage.
Their modulus operandi seems to be:

  1. Accept the phone under warranty.
  2. Open it up (or pretend to do so).
  3. Report a water problem and then charge the hapless victim large amounts of money to do nothing at all.

I am completely angry and disillusioned with this entire episode and my faith in Nokia has gone down quite a bit. Not because they make bad phones – but their after sales service is so pathetic that you would be better off throwing off your 15K phone and getting a new one than get aggravated and cheated in chasing around these Customer Care people.
This is definitely one place where Nokia can learn a lesson or two from the Sony Erricson guys and Motorolla guys. These people atleast honestly repair your handset if it is under warranty even if they charge astronomical sums post warranty.
But I guess it’s the model which Nokia has chosen to follow – that of franchising the service.
There is no non-static room to speak off – their engineers work out in the customer area, they (engineers) also seem completely uneducated, freshly graduated students and their main goal seems to be “ripping off the customer as much as they possibly can”.
I bet they even have a “Ripper of the month” contest going on to see who can extract how much money from an unsuspecting customer.
Feels like your dentist doesn’t it? But believe you me, this one is a lot more painful.
My advice now is – buy a Nokia phone if you really need to – but pray that nothing ever happens to it.
That will probably be your worst nightmare!

BSNL Customer Care

Better late than never…
’’Good Evening Sir … This is Indrajeet. How may I help you ?’’
I was stunned.
I really was.
I took a couple of seconds to check the number I had dialed on the LCD screen and then match it with the telephone directory number.
I had dialed 1500 which is the 24 hour BSNL customer care service.
After, recovering from the state of shock, I told the customer care service guy, that our other telephone line had gone dead on New Year’s Eve and we couldn’t register the complaint as the complaint registration number was not being answered.
’’No Problem Sir. Could you please give me the details ?’’
I did.
’’Sorry for the inconvenience. Your phone will be online within a day’s time.’’
Next day by 12 pm, it was.
I had called the customer care number the previous day at 9:00 pm.
The day after, I received another call from BSNL.
’’Sir, you had registered a complaint of your phone having gone dead.’’
’’Yes, I did.’’
’’Is it working now ?’’
’’Yes. Thank you.’’
’’Thank you sir, for using BSNL services.’’

Is this the BSNL we remember ?
Gone are the days when we would have to listen to music for the good part of an hour waiting for the helpdesk to answer.
The times, when registering a complaint after 4 p.m was impossible.
When, we would have to plead and beg with the customer service, and even call them three to four times for our telephones to get fixed … which would happen only in 3 – 4 day’s time.
Make way for the new BSNL.
( Competition does get the best out of anything, doesn’t it ? )
The Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited has woken up and smelled the coffee.
It was about time.
Being the biggest telecom providers in the country ( a monopoly which they had enjoyed for long ), they are now threatened by the likes of Tata, Hughes and Reliance.
BSNL has off late, come up with some fantastic schemes.
A visit to their website ( www.bsnl.co.in ) will give you more details.
Services like Internet, Caller Line Identification, Call Waiting are all free now.
BSNL promises to give you a new telephone connection instantly on registering with them.
No more waiting for months.
The drab, tissue paper material telephone bills are now passe.
The bills are now Computer Printed ( by Laser Printers, I think ) and come in an easy to read and understand format … in an envelope … by post.
You can also pay your bills online by their e-bill payment scheme.
One really amazing feature that I HAVE to mention is that you can now check all your phone bills and services that you have subscribed to … online.
I registered with their services and within a week’s time, they sent me the pin and password by Post.
I was really impressed.
I still am.
Such services and customer care services provided by a Govt. Company are very, very rare.
Kudos to the people at BSNL and keep up the good work.
Before I end, I’d like to share another experience.
I had bought the BSNL internet package sometime earlier and had trouble logging in at night.
I called the customer care service at 12:30 am … Yes. It was A.M
And the call was answered.
The problem was fixed and I received an email and a phone call the next day asking me whether my problems were solved.
Truly, amazing …
Keep up the good work guys.
Makes me proud to be an Indian.
A Side Note
This review is about the BSNL landline services and not the WLL or Cell One Services.
Also, after almost a year and a half since writing this review, I have come to the conclusion, that other than basic queries and facilities, the helpdesk is completely, utterly useless …
They are still there where they started a year and a half ago … Hence I am going to drop the rating one notch … 🙁

Kandisa (Music)

Assignment completion time saw us friends hot swapping music.
Bored with the conventional music albums, we were digging up and ’Different’ music that we had.
Thats when my friend lent me his ’Indian Safari’ Tape. The tape was a mixed compilations of various artistes … all good songs … but the one that really caught my attention was ’Kandisa’ by Indian Ocean .
I was hooked. I just had to have the cassette.
The next day, I plopped into music world and bought the cassette for 65 bucks !
The attendant told me the CD costs Rs. 395/- ( wow ! )
The cassette is just so amazingly refreshing. It is the kind of music that you mightn’t have heard lots. Its totally alternative. New vibes.
Their music is somewhat in the league of ’Alms for Shanti’ but different in their own way. Very soothing, very refreshing … so earthy !
The cassette starts of with ’Kya Maloom’ which is an amazing track. The other great tracks which I really loved were ’Kandisa’ which is the title track ( last on side B ). This is actually a Syrian Catholic Hymn which has been sung for more than 1000 years and the band has done a really amazing job recreating the magic.
Another really great track – ’Ma Rewa’ is a folksy song about the Narmada and really peppy. ’’Hille Re’’, ’’Leaving Home’’ are some of the other tracks that I adore.
The cassette has a total of 7 tracks.
Most of the songs don’t have a lot of vocals … only lots of music which is fantastic.
The music will appeal to people of all ages, cultures, languages, and tastes.
To a person who swears by Metallica and one who loves N’Sync and group.
Everyone in my family ( including my mom ) just loved the music.
The music is perfect for listening anytime, anyplace.
It transports you to a place … a green place … you under the shadows of the trees on a lazy, sunny afternoon, relaxing, with the green grass under your bare feet and a the sound of water flowing from babbling brook completing the perfect picture.
Thats where you go when you listen to the songs.
The album is marketed by Times Music, but hasn’t had a lot of publicity ( as you will later read from the cassette cover booklet ), so not many people know about the album. But all those who own it, will treasure it … I assure you.
The cassette will make the perfect gift for anyone and also the perfect music to accompany you on those long drives on a picnic.
Just go grab a copy, I assure you … you’ll love it.
Happy listening …

Microsoft Windows Xp

Microsoft has come a long, long way … Way back from the late eighties to now, they have established their supremacy and can we call, their legacy in the world of operating systems … Well, Windows Xp is the newest horse from their stables and it sure beats all its predecessors hands down … Microsoft claims that this, to date, is the most simple to use operating system and I totally agree ! This operating system comes in two flavours –
’’ The Home Edition ’’ and the ’’Professional Edition’’ the difference being in the features and of course, their pricing … The Home Edition sells for around Rs. 4000/- while the other one goes for around Rs. 9500/- Microsoft sure packs a lot of Features with this baby. It has games, disc accessories, a picture viewer, and the works … all the things that came with the previous versions are here … And did I mention there is also a movie maker thrown in for good measure ? Well, it is not a completely hi-fi movie editing suite, but will do for the home user … It comes with 11 games and the controversial Internet Explorer 6 for your net browsing needs with Outlook Express 6 as your Email Client … Also comes with the MSN messenger service … an IM service to stay in touch with your friends …
As for the Ease of Use , this OS sure thrashes the competition and even sits on them … If I may say so, this is the most simple to use Operating System which I have ever seen for New Comers … It is so simple that it is disgusting ! But for old junkies, you can revert back to the old Interface that we know and love … so no hassles in this department ….
The User Interface is just stunning ! One of the best that Microsoft has come up with … It has integrated the Windows Blinds software into in Interface by which the whole of Windows is totally skinable and you can tweak it to your heart’s desire … The explorer is also changed … for the better and it offers the common tasks that you can do, in a bar at the side for faster working … Also the ability to see all the pictures as their thumbnails within the explorer and also the ability to change a folder’s icon according to the content within the folder is a nice touch …
Hardware Compatibility is again, one of the areas where Microsoft is miles ahead .. It supports tonnes of hardware … many of which I haven’t even heard of … The only problem arises when you have very, very old devices … but then the drivers to most of these devices are available on the internet … Microsoft takes great pains in providing this hardware support and other operating systems like Linux are still trying to cope up …
Stability in this OS has been greatly increased … You will see very few Blue Screens of Death and the system hardly ever crashes … unless you really mess around too much with it …
The Security Features are also quite good and if you install the OS in an NTFS partition, it provides you with a plethora of encryption options … Another notable feature in this OS is the system compatibility feature in which you can make Windows Xp behave like Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2000 to suit the older versions of some programs that you might have … thus making the Operating system … pretty much backward compatible … Also, unlike Windows NT and 2000 which game amazing stability and performance … but do not allow you to play games or give bad performance while watching movies or playing music, this baby rocks the house in the entertainment department with the bundled Windows Media Player ( and now Windows Media Player 9 is available for download !!! ) If you are looking for an operating system which gives you performance, stability and also allows you to play your games, then go for Windows Xp … and enjoy the Experience !