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Frustrated with Gatewy Laptop Product Quality (Lemon), Warranty and Service
Posted by Donp on 10/27/2003
CONWAY, ARKANSAS -- This is a copy of a letter that I wrote to Gateway, after two years of a very frustrating experience with their product quality and service. The letter speaks for itself. Following my letter is their response letter dated October 3, 2003. This letter wonderfully speaks for Gateway, Inc. Their letter is a "must read" by the computer audience.

If you know of other web sites that I could post this letter on, please advise.


September 12, 2003

Gateway, Inc.
14303 Gateway Place
Poway, CA 92064

Re: Service Request 2-931274594, Customer ID 26573551
Gateway Solo 9500, SN BDB51350145, 0024600204

To Whom It May Concern:

This is to request that Gateway, Inc. replace the referenced laptop computer. This computer has been a lemon from day one. I have been totally dissatisfied with the computer and have expressed this many, many times to your technical staff. Due to my total dissatisfaction, I was advised to write this letter by your technical staff using the referenced service request number.

My latest experience with the computer was 7-22-03. The LCD viewer went out while watching a DVD movie (no, I didn’t drop it, had not dropped it, hadn’t even thought about dropping it, and there is no evidence from looking at the case that the computer has ever been dropped). I called your technical staff 7-22-03 and talked to Manzil, #105744, and he informed me that the LCD was bad. The best part of this conversation was that he informed me that the LCD was not covered under warranty. I even talked to his supervisor, Adam, and he confirmed the good news. They said they would have someone call me the next day with an estimate of the cost to replace the LCD and to arrange for me to ship the computer to you for repair. The estimate was $869. Good news? What this meant is that I would have to take a $2,284.99 computer and throw it in the trash can.
For your information, during the month of August, Dell had a laptop advertised with similar hardware for $699. None of this helps me. Regardless, I am the looser and Gateway continues to win with your present policy. All I ever wanted was to have a dependable laptop for use in my consulting engineering business. I have never had this from day one, thanks to Gateway.

I have read and re-read the limited warranty. I cannot find where the warranty excludes the LCD. The warranty simply states:

“Gateway Companies, Inc. warrants to the original end-user that the Product ( excluding Accessories) will be free from defects in materials and/or workmanship from the date of shipment for the period indicated on your invoice, except for portable batteries, docking stations, and Gateway-branded big screen monitors (27 inches or larger) for which the warranty period is one year from the date of shipment unless otherwise specifically indicated on your invoice.”

I purchased the computer 8-30-01 with a 3-year extended warranted that I paid an additional $105.00 for. I was assured by the Little Rock, AR Gateway staff that the computer was completely covered by the warranty. They assured me that the $105.00 I paid for the extended warranty was a bargain. I assume that I can now place this warranty on my bulletin board until it expires, as a reminded of Gateway’s efforts toward customer satisfaction, since I now have lost the use of my $2,284.99 lemon computer. I know, it is only money.

I regret having to spend my time writing this since all of my repair history is on your computer under my customer ID number. But since Gateway has a policy of not providing a hotline phone number that a person can call to express their total dissatisfaction with a Gateway Product, I am listing some of the wonderful experiences I have had with Gateway since my purchase of the lemon computer 8-30-01:

1. On 12-5-01, the computer would not boot-up. The computer is 3-months old. I called technical support (by the way, sit down sometime in the quietness of your home, experience the wonderful Gateway call menu, and time yourself on how long it takes to reach a real live technical person) and talked to John, Event #60655534. He told me something to try with no success.
2. I called technical support back 12-5-01, 11:45 am and talked to Charlie. After going through the exciting Gateway telephone menu and the disappointment of not having a working computer, then expressing this to Charlie, he was so concerned that he hung up on me.
3. I called technical support back and talked to John, and then I talked to Doug, then to Andrew and then to a supervisor named Tim. Each required me to experience the wonderful Gateway telephone menu again and again. After all of the frustrating calls, they decided the hard drive had failed.
4. I don’t remember what happened between 12-5-01 and 12-10-01, but on 12-10-01, at noon, I called technical support and talked to Rick, then we were disconnected for some unknown reason. I then called back and talked to Ryan, 99490, and I believe he said I would have to send the computer in. This was Event #60655534.
5. On 12-12-01, I called technical support and talked to Mark. He said that I would have to send the computer to Gateway for repair. I am now 7-days into the wonderful Gateway customer satisfaction policy. On 12-12-01, Chris called to advise me of the procedures Gateway uses to pick up the lemon computer. Then we were disconnected before I received all of the needed information. I then had to call back the wonderful Gateway telephone menu and talk to Shawn. He told me that Airborn Express would pick up the computer after I received a box (by mail) to put the computer in for shipping. This happened as planned.
6. On 12-19-01, the computer was shipped back to me. I believe I received it on 12-22-01. The service department had replaced the hard drive and shipped it back to me. The good news about all of this, I lost all of my work related engineering files. There is no way to put a value on this loss, but I am sure it would be in the thousands of dollars. But I know that was my fault, since I did not have them backed up. I also know that under normal circumstances, you can retrieve files from a hard drive before discarding. I now know too that I am a Gateway, totally unsatisfied customer.
7. On approximately 12-21-01, I called technical support again at 2:30 pm and talked to Siin complaining about the US port on my computer not working. He gave me some things to try.
8. On 12-27-01, I called technical support and talked to Mike at 12:30 pm. I complained of not being able to use my USB port and the unavailable Help and Support on my computer, Event #61590712. His advice was to reload the “C” drive. This did not work, so I called technical service back 12-27-01 and talked to John. He said I needed another hard drive and he would mail me one and I could install it.
9. On 12-27-01, I called customary service to express my dissatisfaction with the computer. The computer is now 4-months old. I was convinced the computer was a lemon. Two replacement hard drives required in the first 4-months of use of the computer. I talked to Ed with no satisfaction. I then called the local Gateway store in Little Rock, AR and they advised me to call customer service.
10. On 12-27-01, I called back customer service and talked to James. He then transferred me to technical management. I talked to Tonya, #044, case management and she transferred me to portable management. I talked with Mark, not with portable management, but I am now connected with technical support. He transferred me, and then I was disconnected again. I then called technical support back and talked to Justine and during the conversation, I was, yes you guess it, disconnected again. By now, I am totally frustrated, disappointed and mentally exhausted from being a Gateway totally unsatisfied customer.
11. On 1-3-02, I tried something new; I conversed with Emory, via email. She said to carry the computer to the local store or call case management. Remember, the computer’s USB port was not working and Help and Support software would not boot up. So I called customer support, and during the conversation, you guessed it, the satisfied customer was disconnected. I called backed again and explained by problems.
12. I believe I received the replacement hard drive (it was a used part that had the famous words “reconditioned on it) the same day, 1-03-02. I called technical support and Justine walked me through the process of replacing the hard drive. After installing the used hard drive, you guessed it, the same two problems existed, no USB port nor Help and Support.
13. I called technical support again on 1-3-02 and talked to Lisa. She said that she had read about this complaint and suggested that the fix is to reset the computer clock. I reset it to May 2001 and she told me to do something that I don’t remember, but regardless, after resetting the clock back to the current date, the computer worked perfect. She gave me a #208-323-2551 for the fix. This was Event #61590712.
14. Then on the same day I had to call technical support back and I talked to Justine. The computer would not boot up. She suggested that I turn the computer off and hold the off button for 10 seconds before releasing. This worked. Thanks to Lisa and Justine, my $2,284.99 lemon computer was working perfect again. Remember, the computer is still 4-months old with 2 replacement hard drives and 24 phone calls to technical support. Time is only money.
15. On 8-13-02. I carried the computer to The Computer Works, a local computer repair center in Conway, AR. There was a short in the computer. You could slightly press on the computer and it would loose power or lock up. I was willing to pay for the repairs, even though it was still under warranty. This is indicative of how much I despise the effort that is required by Gateway to get the computer serviced. The Computer Works advised me that there was a crack in the main board and since it was under warranty, to contact Gateway. I continued trying to use the lemon computer by propping it up so as not to loose power. At the time I was doing technical writing for the federal government and my use and need for the computer was intense.
16. On 9-4-02 (the computer is now 13 months old) I carried the computer to your local store in Little Rock, AR. They review the electrical short problem and determined that they could not repair it. So they mailed the computer to your Gateway Repair Center, Irving, TX. It was received by the Center on 9-13-02.
17. On 9-13-02, the Repair Center replaced the fan
• On 9-17-02, they replaced the case and reflowed cold solder.
• From 9-18 to 9-26, there was no work on the computer.
• On 9-26-02, the Center had or did replace the main board, CPU, heat sink assembly, IC socket, video card, and the UA1 MB assembly. It was shipped out the same date, some 22 days later. All of my personal engineering files where gone again.
• During this 22 day period I continually tried to determine when the computer would be returned. I was told 9-4-02 at the local store in Little Rock, AR, that the Repair Center would return the computer in 5-7 business days. It is obvious that what you say is not always what you mean. I tried the Chat Center on 9-25-02 and talked to Storm. She replied with a cookbook answer: “As per our records the technicians at the service center are working hard on your system.” “Is there anything else I can help you with?” I pleaded with her to find a way to replace the computer since it was a lemon. She referred me to same old merry-go-round – the Client Care team.
• The Chat Center was only one of the many calls I made during this 22 day period. Since I was in dire need of my lemon computer, I called at various times to Tashi, #761, Rick (Supervisor) #035, Muridel, #2207, Avery, and Carol, in my efforts to find out the status of my computer. All, with the exception of Avery, gave me the typical “our technicians are working hard on your computer and it will be shipped soon.” Avery was the only one who actually took time to locate the computer, determined the expected return shipping date and even gave me her direct telephone line so I would not have to go back through the wonderful Gateway phone menu.
18. The computer again worked perfect until 7-22-03. The $2,284.99 lemon computer is now 23 months old. This is when the $869.00 LCD viewer went out and for some reason, it is not covered by warranty? This wonderful failure of my outstanding Gateway product was alluded to at the beginning of this letter.

Again, I resent even further having to take one-half of a day of my time to write this letter. Your technical staff assures me that you’ll keep a history of my lemon computer within your computer filing system. This letter has cost me more than $500.00 of my time since I am in business for myself. Not only that, I have spent endless hours with your technical staff to determine solutions to the lemon computer. I have lost all of personal files twice. I was delayed in my technical writing contract during the 22 days you kept my computer for repair. This cost me over a thousand dollars. I have pleaded continually that this computer be replaced. Even “Best Buy” has a “3-time lemon” warranty. If you have to have your computer repaired 3-times during the warranty period, they will replace it free.

If you force me to throw my $2,284.99 lemon computer in the trash by refusing to replace it, you will win the battle as you have from the day I bought this lemon. But I want you to listen closely, I will win the war. I promise to insert this letter on the Gateway computer “user” site, I promise to send this letter to our local Better Business Bureau, I promise to send this letter to the Arkansas Attorney General’s Consumer Alert Division, I promise to share my lemon Gateway experience with every engineer or individual who is in the market for a computer and I promise to write PC World and other related magazines about my experience with the Gateway lemon product. I will win the war many times over if you decline and continue with an insensitive attitude towards replacing my LEMON Gateway Product.

AGAIN, THIS LETTER IS WRITTEN TO REQUEST THAT MY “LEMON” GATEWAY LAPTOP COMPUTER BE REPLACED – PERIOD.

I know I have been sarcastic, non-professional and somewhat unkind in this letter. I apologize for my tone, but I am so frustrated and disappointed with the lemon product. I believe Gateway will act positive on this request. All I want is a dependable computer that I can provide information and do the work that is required in my consulting engineering business. I do not want to purchase the lemon computer again, nor do I want to throw $2,284.99 in the trash can.


Sincerely,



Don L. Potter, P. E.
260 Grand Falls
Conway, AR 72032

Following is a copy of Gateway's response letter:


Gateway Incorporated
700 East 54th Street N
Sioux Falls, SD 57104
T: 605-357-1000


October 3, 2003

Don Potter
260 Grand Fls
Conway, AR 72032

ID 26573551

Dear Don Potter:

Thank you for your recent correspondence to Gateway. Your letter has reached the Executive Offices.

Gateway values you as a customer and your issues are important. At the point of delivery, you were provided with the Gateway Limited Warranty. Gateway policy is to repair computers within the terms of the Gateway Limited Warranty. Gateway will not deter from this policy. Unfortunately your computer is not within the guidelines of this document. There is nothing further that can be done. Any future correspondence will be filed and not be met with a reply.

Gateway's mission is to build great customer relationships and we are committed to your overall satisfaction. We are constantly striving to improve our company and pride ourselves on the quality of products and services we provide.

Thank you for taking the time to contact us.

Sincerely,


Keith Nussbaum
Emergency Response Specialist
Gateway Executive Offices

As I stated in my September 12, 2003 letter, I have read the limited warranty over and over, and I have never been able to find where the LCD is excluded. Regardless, the laptop was, is and always has been a lemon. A copy of the limited warranty may be faxed upon request.

Thank you for reading and sharing my frustration with Gateway. Please share this with any computer literate person that may be interested in a factual experience with Gateway.

     
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Posted by laurel on 2004-02-18:
The same thing happened to me. In my case, it was just the need for a replacement keyboard. Gateway is in financial difficulty but has no desire to keep its customers.

BTW, your LCD issue, it is probably not burned out. Most likely the connection wire popped loose. The same thing happened with mine. Fortunately, I have a friend certified in laptop repair and he opened it up and popped it back on and added a bit of electrical tape.
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Warning, Don't Buy From Gateway!!!
Posted by Neil_mddx on 09/02/2010
I purchased a Gateway computer on 4/19/2010. Just recently the hard drive went down and would not boot. I took it back to Best Buy to see what they could do. They sent it off to be repaired and told me I would have to call Gateway and get a recovery disk, as they could not do that, to get the computer back to the way I bought it. Ok, fine, no problem, but when I called they told me the software warranty was only for 90 days and I would have to purchase the disk from them even though the hardware is warranted for 1 year, and that is what caused the problem to begin with. It was the rudest customer service department that I have ever dealt with, tech support just told me to go to the website and hung up on me.

I looked up the terms of the warranty and under the hardware section it states, and I quote exactly, "The scope of technical support consists of helping You diagnose and resolve problems with defects in Products covered by this Agreement, and, for PC Products, REINSTALLING THE FACTORY-INSTALLED OPERATING SYSTEM AND (SOFTWARE) to restore it to the original factory configuration". I kept mailing them back stating this and they kept responding with there is nothing they can do.

It was a hardware problem that occurred and they don't care, just saying that it's past 90 days and I'm brushed off by them every time. I highly recommend whoever reads this that they look elsewhere for a computer. DO NOT USE GATEWAY!!! Worst customer service ever! Will not stand by a warranty that it states in their terms of the warranty that they warrant. Absolute joke for a customer service department
     
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Posted by Alain on 2010-09-03:
I'm surprised a recovery disk didn't come with the computer and also that they wouldn't do something as simple as reinstall the software that it originally had.
Posted by Obsfucation on 2010-09-03:
When the disk doesn't come with the machine (and it hardly ever does) it is because the machine has a utility that creates the disks for you,. You're supposed to run it as part of the setup, and you get reminded to do it more than once. If you don't do it, you don't have any recovery disks, and when you need them you have to buy them. It's just a fact of life.
Posted by Ponie on 2010-09-04:
Obsfucation, did you cash your last payroll check from Gateway? :)

neil, how did you determine that this is a hardware problem? As you can see, my computer knowledge is summed up in three words: Point and click.
Posted by neil_mddx on 2010-09-04:
Mine isn't much better at all. I took it back to best buy, and after their geek squad looked at it they told me it was the hard drive and sent it off to be replaced
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-09-04:
Thanks for the post. Gateway is another one I will cross off my list. Yes, they do tell you to make a recovery disk, but I'm tired of companies profitting off their ill-made products. If they want to keep customers, they really need to treat them better. After all, they are so many other computers to choose from. Over the years, there have been many I would not buy again: Compaq, HP, Dell, Gateway.....and the list will go on. Any product can break sooner than expected, but it's how a company handles the warranty repair that either impresses me or makes me know to shop elsewhere in the future. The recovery disk costs them pennies. They blew it!
Posted by neil_mddx on 2010-09-22:
Just to let anyone know who reads this, persistence pays off. I finally got a hold of someone in the US who could make some sense, or just tired of dealing with me, whichever it worked. They mailed the Cd's for free. Don't give in to companies like gateway or acer, who owns gateway. Also, if anyone out there could use a direct email to someone above the overseas customer service, it is cic_helpdesk@tx.acer.com Try it, worked for me, and good luck to all
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Single Worst Customer Service I have ever received.
Posted by BADriver on 08/12/2011
I returned my computer under warranty in order to have the problem that thousands of other users (according to Google) fixed.( I suggest you Google " Gateway computer will not boot" before buying.) I was told that it "had major induced trauma" and that I had 12 hours to call back to give them 200$ to fix it, or it would be shipped back, not repaired.
I did, thinking it would be cheaper to get robbed of 200$ for a fictional trauma, then buy a new computer. Apparently, it only takes 6 hours to fix a " major induced trauma" AND begin the shipping, When I called back to have the address changed, so someone would be there to sign for it, " it had already been shipped." Tricky. When I pleaded for them to call FedEx and re route, I was told that Gateway's policy was that they will not pay the 11$ FedEx charged.
I will not only never buy another Gateway product, I will go out of my way to make sure my friends, family, and strangers never buy another product from them.
If you are looking for someone polite, friendly and informed, I suggest you avoid " Tracy" at 866-616-2237 or " David" Badge number 25935 who you will get if you call Customer Support at 949 471 7000.. Call either one of these people immediately if you would like to be chuckled at while they stand behind Gateway's Policies.
     
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Posted by At Your Service on 2011-08-13:
I don't think Googleing something as generic as "Gateway computer will not boot" would give anyone a real indication of problems with Gateway. Try replacing the "Gateway" with any other major name brand and you'll like see something very similar.

I would also suggest there was nothing wrong with them sending the computer to the original address you provided.

That doesn't mean I'm a big Gateway fan, though, either.
Posted by bcd on 2011-08-13:
It's impossible to form an opinion about this post without knowing what the malfunction was. If it included a software issue, the fee may be reasonable if it included data recovery and software reinstallation.

Typing in any brand computer with "will not boot" into Google will return many hits.
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Do Not Buy A Gateway
Posted by NoGatewayinOhio on 10/02/2007
Last weekend I purchased two Gateway Computers. Since that time I've had to contact technical support and Gateway Corporate Headquarters several times.

The machines I purchased are JUNK. They are less than a week old and already in need of service. I asked Gateway to exchange the computer, but they refuse and actually told me I should have researched the computer and the warranty before I bought it. I cannot agree more. This is my fault for failing to do due diligence as a consumer. Both computers have trouble connecting to the internet, both are slow because they are running Windows Vista OS which requires 1Gig of ram. Gateway only installed 512 MB of ram. This should be illegal. Also, one of the computer's cd/dvd rom drive has never worked. This is after Gateway mailed me a new drive to replace the one the unit came with. Their tech support is laughable. They know nothing and keep you on the phone for hours asking you to do the same steps over and over again, when they clearly are not resolving the problem. All of this on your dime, mind you, because there is no toll free support for non-business customers. Calling corporate is a waste of time. They, shockingly, know or care even less about the customer than the tech support people. Whatever you do not buy a Gateway Computer.

This company does not provide a quality product to the consumer and refuses to take any steps to make the problem right. I've read that they are being assumed by ACER computers at some point. Don't know if it's true or not, but do your homework before you buy.
     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2007-10-02:
Sorry to hear of your problems. Gateway is one of the brands we recommend to our clients. I use a Gateway Media model fully loaded with 4G of ram and it has never failed me in a year now. I got one of the last ones with XP as I did not want to be the guinea pig with Vista. I might suggest your issues are with Vista more than the box? Send me an email and I will see if I can help you out. Send me any error messages you may be getting if you send me an email. Good luck!
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-10-02:
superbowl: great help !
<;O)
Posted by Extended Warranty on 2007-10-02:
"This company does not provide a quality product to the consumer and refuses to take any steps to make the problem right"

Or is it that they do offer a quality product and you chose the $349 model? Don't be blaming Gateway for your penny pinching. FYI, the cheapest laptop will require the cheapest parts.
Posted by LarryDan on 2007-10-03:
Most of these bottom of the line computers are running on Vista home basic with 512 MB of ram. Nothing illegal about it, they will run, just not near maximum. You should be able to pick up another 512 at a reasonable price (try newegg!) to put in the machines and better your user experience. However you're still running Vista, so probably not. Hopefully their first service pack will elminate most of the Vista problems.
Posted by Furko on 2007-10-03:
I am with you, having posted my own review about 22-inch Gateway LCD monitors on the same day that yours came out (10/02).

I was amazed, really, that there is NO WARANTY with a Gateway product. There was nothing in either boxes, and I finally had to call directory assistance to get a toll number for them.

Yes, ACER purchaserd GATEWAY in September. This was not a "merger" but an outright purchase by one company of another. ACER is crazy is they don't kill off the Gateway brand. If they don't, it is just going to bite them in the fanny eventually.

With respect to "Gateway Tech Support," the day after I paid good money for these monitors, I was on a toll-call on my dime, being told that to get help will cost me $79.95. Apparently, Gateway is making aditional money out of the fact that their products stink to Kingdom Come.

Furko
Posted by JSU05Grad on 2007-10-13:
I wish I would have seen this write up sooner. I purchased my ML3109 when my Dell Inspiron 1100 finally went out. I basically bought the Gateway b/c it was light, nice looking, and cheap. I thought it would be good considering I only need it for the internet. Well, turns out this computer even sucks for using only the internet!

Does anyone have this same problem:

I will be using the internet and suddenly the page will upload to another "Gateway Search" page that says that link could not be found. Most of the time the link shown on the search page is UNKOWN to me. I have no idea where it came from or anything. I try to go back to the previous page, but then it will always take me back to that dang Gateway Search page. Am I the only one that is having this problem?!

It tends to happen a lot on MySpace.com, but still happens occassionally on other sites such as Yahoo and Hotmail.

Any thoughts on how to fix it?! HELP ME!
Posted by propmgr on 2007-10-18:
I don't have that problem, I've got a different one. Is anyone having this one:

The computer won't power off all the way at shut down.... I have to turn off via the power button, at next boot up I have to power up in safe mode and then restart. UGH!
Posted by Anonymous on 2007-10-18:
PropMgr, you have some bad stuff in your system registry. There are a couple good cleaners out there, one I like is Ccleaner.com. Download it and run the cleaner, then registry cleaner then click on tools, startup and remove all the programs you do not need to load when your PC starts (which will be most of them). Then do a good defrag and all should be well again. Good luck!
Posted by JSU05Grad on 2007-10-21:
I've learned that you can uninstall this "Gateway Search Page" and that seemed to help. If you ever has the same problem I am having, then once the search page comes up there is a link that you can click to show what to look for and how to uninstall the program. It may be called something different than "Gateway Search."

I have uninstalled the program and it seems to work better; however, if a page cannot be pulled up, then it will just show an internet explorer page. I still have to reload the page.

Any suggestions? See my post on 10/13/2007 for further explanations.
Posted by panamax on 2007-11-10:
A friend purchased this model. I was appalled at its performance; too slow, poor wireless performance, excess oem add ons, intolerably long boot up time. When I discovered only 512 mb Ram I was blown away. I could not believe they would put it out w less than 1 Gb or Ram.

We purchased 2MB of Ram and that pretty much solved most of the problems, BUT boot up is still on the slow side. So spend $100 for some good RAM and this machine will thank you for it.
Posted by dongeorge on 2007-12-02:
I recently purchased a refurbished Gateway computer via Tiger Direct Canada.

Thankfully, within the 90 day warranty, a problem came up, which was covered. However,
the service that Gateway's Utah based call center provides to Canadian clients, is one of the worse experiences I've had in 25 years of being a consumer.

Since I bought the machine on an "in-person" basis at a Tiger Direct retail location, the Gateway call center was not able to find a record of my purchase. Apparently, all they're able to see is online purchases.

So I had to fax my photopied receipts in. Scan and email as an attachment was not an option. This is a technology company in 2007, and fax was their only means provided for this type of communication. Tell me that's not user difficult. I acknowledge there are some that don't have access to a scanner, so the fax channel needs to exist for that group of people, but anyone else who can scan and email, should have email delivery as an option.

I have to believe that managing email and attachments is far easier than the trials of managing a fax machine and all of the associated problems that can go wrong with that medium.

I faxed 3 or 4 times, and then when they still didn't have my fax, I decided I had enough and called Gateway's head office in California. Luckily, I got through to someone right away, and he provided me with his email address and I sent the receipts.

A new power supply was on it's way to me the same day. My pc would not boot up, only the fan, so this new power supply was their first attempt at fixing same.

I get the power supply a few days later, and install it, and it didn't rectify the problem. I call back into their Utah call center, and I'm advised then it has to be the motherboard. So it's arranged for DHL to drop off a box, which I would pack the machine in, and they'd deliver it to their repair vendor here in the Toronto area.

That process goes smoothly. The repair vendor receives the machine, which I verify via the DHL website a day after it left my house.

4 days later, I decide to call into the Gateway call center to check up on the status of repairs on my machine, and find out when I might be able to expect it's return.

Here's where the next big problem erupts. The young lady that took my call, was either too lazy to read all of the file notes, or she just didn't have access to the all of the file notes...not sure which, but she had no record of my machine being picked up by DHL, and she wasn't able to track my machine.

She then decided that I need to be transferred to "retail sales dispatch" to find my machine, which made no sense to me, since this was a service/warranty issue. I didn't need to be transferred to a sales dispatch department.

I immediately ask her, before she transferred me, to speak with a manager. 10 minutes of hold time later, I finally get a manager who provides me with a response that made a bit of sense: it could take as much as 7 business days if parts are not in stock with the repair vendor. I'm still left with the feeling that this was a canned response however, and even this manager didn't really know what was happening with my computer.

You'd think that Gateway would provide a portal / database for their repair suppliers to use, to communicate status.

I hang up, still not knowing what was happening with my machine. I email the gentleman back at the Gateway head office in California explaining all of this and requested his help.

4-5 hours later the same day....I'll never know for sure if the guy in the Gateway head office was involved or not....my computer arrives at my house via DHL.

I plug everything back in, and everything is now working fine. That was 2 days ago. We shall see how things go from here.

The service repair vendor that Gateway has hired...Decision One Canada....did a good job.

That call center of theirs in Utah, either does not have access to the correct tools to do a good job, or they're simply too damn lazy.

For that reason alone, I will think twice before ever buying another Gateway Computer again.

Posted by imnotrich on 2009-12-27:
I've had 3+ years of good luck with my ML-3109 so far, of course I knew enough about computers to know that 512mb wasn't sufficient for vista and I immediately installed 2gb. Until this weekend, the only issues I had related were Vista problems and also the junk drivers for the wireless card (realtek 8185 extensible b/g). No driver updates from gateway of course. On several occasions I was ready to upgrade to XP. And forget about warranty. My past experience with both Gateway and E-machines is that they will refuse to honor the warranty and in the unlikely event they will issue an rma they will send your computer back unfixed. Gateway/E machines call center personnel are rude, abusive, abrasive, dishonest, they will cuss, they will refuse to connect you to their supervisor and they WILL hangup on you. Well today I noticed the cpu cooling fan is not doing an adequate job and there is no easy way to access it. Poor engineering. But that's the thing about laptops today. Even the more expensive ones are throw away items. But disagree with the post about $300 laptops. For $300 I should be able to get a product that works.
Posted by CheapLaw on 2010-12-07:
I have advice for students to purchase a cheap laptop. The ML3109 is a fine piece of machinery. It allows you to replace the keyboard. That in of itself is huge. You can find parts easily. The piece of sh*t Vista went. I bought the ML3109 for about $100 too much, but it worked as is. I got an OEM version of Windows 7, reformatted the hard drives, and installed 7. Viola the system is fast and runs. You will need 1GB memory that is a given, but after that no problems. I got this because of Exam Pro's requirements. Netbooks and the anything from Apple are a joke for serious school work. Buy used ML3109 and do as I have done and viola a good boat anchor of a computer for your school work.
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Horrible Gateway Experience, 10/04
Posted by TEECEE on 10/13/2004
i purchased a $1,500 gateway laptop less than one year ago and now the HD already has bad sectors and i have to get it completely replaced. this after only light personal usage! unbelievable.
but the WORST part is i have had the sh*ttiest time with their customer service and tech support. these people are Dumb. i don't know a d*mn thing about computers, but it seems they are reading Windows for Dummies Volume 1 as they feed me generic answers!
THEN, everytime i log back on to the support chat, i get a new person who i have to start completely over with!!!
the icing on the cake is that i'll have to pay for the $hipping.
i've asked multiple times for their CEO's email, but am ignored. i even asked for upper-level management to address my concerns, but to no avail.
it seems they really dont care if a customer is unhappy. thats why their stock is going to be trading in the OTC range soon.
does anyone on this board have the CEO's email? please email me at teecee0000@yahoo.com with it, thanks!
     
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Posted by tander on 2004-10-13:
Gateway Contact Information
--Feel free to call, write, or e-mail Gateway, but do so maturely.

Website: http://www.gateway.com
Customer Service - 1-800-369-1409
Tech Support - 1-800-846-2301
Tech Support Rep Answering Machine - 1-800-846-2042 ext. 24298
Headquarters:
Gateway, Inc.
CEO Wayne Inouye
7565 Irvine Center Drive
Irvine, CA 92618
phone: 1-858-848-3401, (949) 471-7001
fax: 1-858-848-2681
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Gateway Laptop Sucks
Posted by Rond on 08/02/2013
Gateway NE71B series laptop is the biggest piece of[snip] I've seen in a long time. Mouse doesn't work right half the time, it freezes up 5 times a day, email locks it up every time I open it. I will never own any piece of garbage from Gateway again
     
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5 Day Old Laptop and It's Dead, Taking It Back for Another Brand
Posted by Gdmettler13 on 06/17/2013
LAWRENCEBURG, INDIANA -- I have never had a laptop and was very excited to get my new Gateway. Five days after purchasing it the screen froze up with only a black screen and the white arrow. I called a tech support number first and the only way they could help was to sell me an $99 tech support package. Then I called another number and I was told to take off the battery and then put it back on and tap f2, again nothing but an offer for me to ship it back. So I am taking it back for a different manufacturer!
     
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Customer Service
Posted by WSGWTW1 on 06/14/2013
I called Gateway due to the fact that the pre-installed software was not working. The computer was 2 weeks old, and still under warranty. I was told over and over that I could not be helped and I would be transferred to DELL who for a FEE would help me. I HATE THIS COMPUTER, IT RUNS SLOW AND DOES NOT LOAD ANY PRELOADED SOFTWEAR QUICKLY DO NOT BUY
     
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Posted by trmn8r on 2013-06-14:
Not buying a Gateway computer with preloaded software covers a lot of ground. Specifying the model and software would be helpful.

Usually, assistance with software is not covered under a warranty. Did the software run slowly right away, or is there a chance that something (eg virus, trojan, etc) was picked up off the internet?
Posted by John Nicholson on 2013-06-14:
Without more info it is difficult to judge the validity of your complaint or to help you. I have owned three Gateways and have never had a problem. My last one died last year after 7 years of service. Since you had the machine for two weeks, I suspect something happened in that time period to mess up your computer. Don't blame Gateway unnecessarily. Perhaps a virus, corrupted file(s), etc. Why not just try to restore it to the day you got it or use your recovery disk and put it back to day one?
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Will NEVER Buy a Gateway Laptop Again.
Posted by Beernutz75 on 06/06/2012
CALIFORNIA, CALIFORNIA -- Whatever you do, DO NOT BUY GATEWAY OR ACER. This is not a relationship that you want to get into. Gateway is defined by poor quality products and ZERO customer service. ZERO.

I purchased an NV Series Gateway laptop and within the first two months had my first issue, I took it back to Best Buy and it was sent back to Gateway where they had to replace a piece of faulty hardware. A couple months later the Gateway laptop failed again, and once more I took it back to Best Buy who sent it off and had a new mother board installed. A few months later, the same thing happened, failure, and ANOTHER mother board had to be installed. At this point I was requesting a new computer because it was close to the end of what I consider a short one year warranty and I had already had so many failures and spent so many weeks without my computer. Well, not long after the warranty expired, so too did the battery. The Gateway battery had a catastrophic failure, I lost data and now the battery will not charge. Since that time, my Gateway laptop has become a desk top, always having to be tethered to a wall outlet.

The most recent issue is that it will not start up; it keeps freezing and will not allow me to recover to the last good configuration. I have contacted Gateways tech support but they require a $200 fee for their help. I spent just under 2 hours getting the run around by their tech support and then a supervisor. When I told them I wanted to speak with a corporate customer service rep, I was given a phone number which ultimately got me to another call center in India where they finally admitted that they were in fact tech support as well and not customer service. What you can expect from Gateway is a shabby product that will be patched up and barely kept together until your warranty runs out and then you are on your own unless you want to cough up even more money and time to get it fixed (over the phone by the way).
     
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Posted by FoDaddy19 on 2012-06-06:
The 1 year standard warranty is pretty much the same no matter what make of laptop you get, Dell, HP,etc., they mostly have 1 year warranties. Also if you're under the manufacturer's warranty. They make the call on whether or not to replace the unit. It's not like a extended warranty where after three repairs they automatically (in theory) give you a new laptop.

But yeah, it does sound like you got a lemon. It's unfortunate but it does happen. Gateway has gone downhill considerably since their heyday in the late 90's. They used to make decent stuff as far as mass-market computers go.
Posted by Nodrog on 2013-05-23:
I can forgive a hardware or software error (things like this happen), but their policy on customer service has ruled me out of ever doing business with this group ever again. Im considering hanging around retail stores in a bid to convince other consumers to choose another option.
Posted by Stevie B on 2013-12-10:
Have a 32bit Vista Gateway from 2009. It runs some old Quickbooks software I use, whereas my newer laptops don't. OS corrupted and Gateway says they don't provide support on machines over 3 years old, like keeping digital files takes up too much space in a warehouse somewhere. Will try installing a purchased copy of Vista and hope I get get the drivers I need for this machine. I've had Toshiba's, and now a Gateway. Both pooped out on me, but my Asus seem to chug right along. Have two of those. Gateway obviously trying to force customers to upgrade their machines by withholding support. I'll withhold any money spent on a Gateway product from now on.
Posted by RF on 2013-12-12:
I appreciate the responses here and in additional forums I have searched on Gateway computers. They have been consistent that Gateway is a poor built machine and worse service. I ordered a Gateway NV laptop model last night and cancelled my order today. Going back to purchase a HP laptop. Thanks.
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Problems connecting peripherals/bad customer service
Posted by Rmohre on 03/24/2012
I regret having bought this laptop. I have had problems connecting it to my printer (it doesn't even recognize that it is connected) and connecting the laptop to my external monitor with an HDMI cable and getting a full-screen image. I have no problems connecting with the three older laptops I own--a Dell, a Toshiba, and an HP--so I'm confident it is the Gateway laptop. Your tech support was unable to solve the monitor issue and told me my only recourse on my three-month-still-under-warranty computer is to PAY for tech support. The lack of competency in dealing with my monitor issue makes me doubt you'll be able to fix the printer issue unless I pay for tech support. Sad. I will rely on Googling the problems to find solutions; it's likely I'll have more success.

I wish I could get my money back on this laptop and will tell anyone who asks (or many who don't) that they shouldn't buy a Gateway computer.
     
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Posted by Alain on 2012-03-26:
I just read an article reviewing Gateway/Acer 2011 and their Tech Support only got a 4/15 pts. so you are probably better off listening to someone on Goggle. http://www.laptopmag.com/mobile-life/acer-gateway-brand-rating-2011.aspx
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