Gateway's Horrendous Display of Customer Service
NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- First off, it is no coincidence that Gateway Review Forums are absolutely loaded with terrible reviews. That should be noted by anyone reading this, and passed on accordingly. I'm a fairly reasonable guy, and I can confidently say that the customer service I recently received from Gateway has undoubtedly been the worst customer service I've ever experienced.
Similar to many other reviews on these forums, my issue with Gateway involved their warranty, the repair center, and Gateway's failure to act with even the slightest amount of integrity during the entire process. I'm not even a classic reviewer - I haven't written one in years. I've been pissed off and tempted plenty of times, but I'll usually just let it go. This situation with Gateway, however, is just so absolutely horrendous, that I am left with no choice but to do my part in spreading the word on the pathetic excuse for a company that is Gateway.
I bought my Gateway PC (Windows 8) on May 21st, 2013. Not 2 months later, I cannot install Windows Updates without an immediate freeze, cannot shut down the computer, cannot restart, reset, refresh to factory settings, system restore - nothing. The hardware is busted. So I call up Gateway and after basic troubleshooting attempts, they advise me to send it in for repair under my 1-year Limited Warranty. After a long discussion, they tell me to ship it out to them in Texas to the Acer Repair Center. I was foolish enough to not consider the shipping cost, which was ~$40.00, until after the fact. That night, I call up Gateway requesting a refund on the $40.00 - reasoning that I just bought the computer two months ago and should not be responsible to pay for the shipment out to them - and they tell me they won't do it. So that pissed me off, but I had other things going on - and I let it slide.
Two weeks later (yesterday), my computer arrives back from the Acer/Gateway Repair Center. Very excited, I open it up and plug it in. Had I read these other reviews, I would have already known what was about to happen. I turn it on - and this is 100% accurate - within 30 seconds, I realize that every single problem with the PC remained unfixed. I literally couldn't even believe it, so I tried a couple of things with the hopes that it was just rusty. Negative. Gateway had sent me back my PC, two weeks later, in the same defective condition it went out. Not a single defect was fixed. So I call Gateway. My biggest issue was not that it remained defective (although that obviously pissed me off quite a bit), but that it took me one attempt to plainly see that the computer was not fixed. I logged on, did a quick check, and immediately noticed. What does that say about Gateway's technicians, let alone Gateway's level of care for their customers? After 30 minutes or so of back and forth, I make my way to the "highest" level of customer service that exists at Gateway - the corporate section. Needless to say, the conversation was highly unsatisfactory. I wish I had recorded the phone call so I could post it right here with my review. The customer service at this level wasn't just horrendous, it was virtually non-existent. At the end of the long, fruitless conversation I had with that robot, the best Gateway was willing to offer me was a 30-day extension on my warranty (10 months away). And she couldn't tell me enough how great of a courtesy I was receiving from Gateway. I was so appalled by this suggestion that I refused it, and don't regret doing so. Despite me explaining that I bought the computer two months ago, paid $40 to ship it out there, and patiently waited two weeks for its return only to find it in the same condition in which I sent it out - there was nothing Gateway would do to rectify the situation. So that was that. My computer is currently on its way back to Texas, likely to return defective for a second time. In the literal sense of the word, it is truly unbelievable that a company of this size could possibly be so devoid of integrity.
I think it's safe to say that I wish you stay far away from Gateway products, both for my, and your, personal well-being. At least until they get their act together, which doesn't seem like it's going to happen anytime soon. For one, based on my, and everyone else's recent experience with Gateway, their computers seem to be very poorly manufactured. Every other review you find on Gateway mentions continuous failures in their PC/Laptop. Second, when your computer does inevitably malfunction, you will have no choice but to ship it out to Gateway's Repair Center. Who knows what those numbskulls even do over there, but if we're going off of these reviews, they certainly aren't doing their job. And third, every single time you have even the slightest issue with your computer, you have to deal with this disgrace of a customer service process. I remain stunned from the entire experience and my subsequent discovery of all these other reviews. I advise anyone considering purchasing a Gateway product to think twice, and even three times, before doing so. They simply cannot be trusted right now.
I let the Gateway corporate team know before I got off the phone that I would spread word of my experience with them, and that is what I must do. Take these words, and spread them.
- Buzz Funksteen