Still Life with a Plate of Onions, 1889
In February of this year, I decided it was a good time to update my ancient MacBook from 2010 with only one functioning USB port to a Dell laptop. I was buying a lot of books on Amazon and decided, hey, why not. Amazon is everything to everyone. The desk, bookshelf, and a Van Gogh reproduction of ?Trees And Undergrowth? that I purchased without problems could attest to that.
After much research, I decided to go with the Dell XPS 9570, the laptop of choice for those fleeing the sinking MacBook dongle ship. And sure enough, I found one on Amazon for a lesser price than other stores. I figured I?d save some money on refurbished since it came with a 90 day warranty. It was Amazon, after all, and I?ve ordered so many things on there without problems.
I received the package on February 26th. ?AVALLAX? said the sticker instead of the usual Amazon box.
Immediately, there were problems. The laptop kept heating up. The speakers were shot. It wouldn?t go to sleep either. I was afraid of carrying it in my laptop bag without setting it on fire.
This was advertised as new but worked as something you?d find in the Goodwill computer section.
The more I contacted Dell and complained, the hotter the laptop got. None of the BIOS updates or drivers did anything except open my eyes at how creepy technical support has gotten. Going to a website as instructed by Dell tech support, the first thing I saw was a screen that read:
?Do you allow Dell to use your mouse and keyboard??
Watching someone click through all your tabs and then download driver updates was a trip.
Once, the tech even forgot to log out out of the control app. If I hadn?t clicked it off, Dell would have had access to all my files. Not like I copied everything over but still.
Well, at least Dell was genuine about what they could help me with. Amazon was a whole other trip.
After losing hope getting the laptop fixed through Dell, I finally reached out to the seller. ?Contact dell for upport? the message back from EPI ELECTRONICS ( FAST SHIPPING ) read. The support email for Avallax didn?t even get a response. Did I order this from Amazon or some Nigerian scam artist? But hey, not to worry. At least I?m covered by Amazon Renewed.
?Amazon Renewed is your trusted destination for pre-owned and refurbished products that are inspected and tested to work and look like new. An Amazon qualified supplier will provide a replacement or refund within 90 days of your receipt if the product does not work as expected.
I feel much better now. Amazon has my back. Right?
Looking up the order again, I noticed that the seller has changed their name from EPI-ELECTRONICS ( FAST SHIPPING ) to MASTERTRONICS (WORLDWIDE SHIPPING & FAST SERVICE) and now has a one-star review that was written on April 16th, two months after I had ordered the laptop, which ends with ?I will never ever will buy a dell computer, nor trust amazon refurbished.?
Lucky me. If I had seen that review, I would have steered clear and never made the purchase. But wait, it?s Amazon!
Reading over the website again, I remind myself that ?Amazon Renewed is your trusted destination for pre-owned and refurbished products that are inspected and tested to work and look like new.?
Meanwhile, the battery life on my supposedly ?new condition? Dell had dropped down to two hours instead of the advertised eight.
But just like I thought, Amazon stepped in and made everything right again. Calling support, the wait time was short and the answers sweet. ?We?re so sorry to hear about your problems? an Indian man named Nelson said, oblivious to the rattle of voices inside of the warehouse. ?We will get you a refund as soon as possible.?
This scenario repeated itself over and over as I had tried to find out exactly when that might be.
?Thank you for the warm approached during our conversation? read a message from Anne D.
?Your Guarantee reimbursement will be credited directly to the same payment method used for your purchase? read another from Anne R.
I was still convinced I had nothing to worry about? even though my conversations started to sound more and more like they were coming from scam artists that somehow duped me into thinking they worked for Amazon. Except, this was actually Amazon.
Finally I got an message back stating my claim was denied. After calling Amazon again, Reynaldo assures me that this was an error and to call back in the next three days to process my refund.
?Everything should be in the notes under your file and the next representative will know what to do.?
Nothing of the sort happened. Calling back Friday, I was shuffled around once again. After waiting two hours for a supervisor, I was asked for my number and told the request had been escalated only to turn around and message the seller on my behalf again.
?Talk to Dell!? the message back from EPI-ELECTRONICS read.
After that, I sat down and wrote a long email to email@example.com detailing my problems. I got a reply back right away.
?Rest assured, we will take each and every action to prevent you from bearing any loss at Amazon.com as we value our customer investment and trust, more than anything else.?We are committed to helping you resolve this matter.?
?read the message from Purva.
A few minutes later, an email from firstname.lastname@example.org told me quite the opposite.
?Although we understand your position, we have reviewed this claim and we stand by our decision. We cannot give you more information about this matter, and we may not reply to further emails about this claim.?
The same email was for some reason also forwarded to me again a few hours later. The most rude thing about it? It wasn?t signed with any name at all.
And there you have it. I thought I was ordering a laptop through Amazon. But instead it looks like I unknowingly ended up ordering a laptop from a website called Avallax.com that just happens to be a one star seller on Amazon.
And that Amazon Renewed Guarantee I thought I was covered with for 90 days? Not a single word about it from anyone I came in contact with.
The desk, bookshelf and even the Van Gogh canvas hanging on my wall now all tell a different story. I no longer want any part of Amazon culture. In the end, the one star seller will continue to sell their laptops, the confused and underpaid customer support will continue to tell customers they should trust Amazon? and I have decided to cancel my Amazon account.
Thank goodness I will never have to see another screen begging me to come back to Prime ever again.
UPDATE: The laptop refuses to power on completely now and I can?t even get the data off. This is after four months of using it. Dell is now offering a replacement while I never want to deal with either company ever again and just want a refund for this incredible waste of time.
FINAL UPDATE: Dell did sent me a replacement laptop. It was also refurbished and works much better. It still has sleep issues sometimes, if I run a bit too many programs. A random reset when you turn it back on does occasionally occur but not enough for me to consider it unusable. The keyboard feels very cheap. One thing that I got out of this is two power cords. When I shipped the broken laptop back, I forgot to include it. They didn?t seem to mind and now I have an extra one.
Dell also spammed me horribly later on with emails stating how ?your warranty is about to expire.? The unsubscribe links never worked and it took a a few emails for them to stop the spam. I also sometimes get a promotional card from Dell in the mail that has AVALLAX printed on top of my address. It?s probably their inside joke at this point.
Still Life with a Plate of Onions, 1889
Trees And Undergrowth, 1887
Fishing Boats On The Beach, 1888
The Siesta, 1890
At Eternity?s Gate, 1890
Head of a Peasant with Cap, 1884
Portrait of Joseph Roulin, 1889
Two Little Girls, 1890
Self portrait, 1889
Portrait of Madame Augustine Roulin, 1888
La Berceuse (Augustine Roulin), 1889
Two Peasant Women Digging in Field with Snow, 1890
Sower at Sunset, 1888