We are blogging mobile

Actually, we are ultra-mobile. Blogging without a desktop or notebook computer from the Nokia N800 Internet Tablet. Certainly exciting, and goes to show how powerful compact gadgets can be. No power cord. No keyboard. And you don’t even have to use the stylus to type. You can just tap on the screen. Hit publish and ‘Boom’ … as Steve Jobs would say ;) Now I just need to figure out how I can do basic photo editing since I like to post pictures. Though, I admit, photo editing on a 4″ screen could be a challenge ;) Haha. But, seriously, publishing images to a blog this way would be ultra sweet and do-able if it weren’t for the size of the images most people start out with. The smallest resolution images my cameras take is 1600×1200. Too big for blog purposes where <500px W and <25KB/img is desirable. I never thought I would think of how I can take smaller images with any of my cameras, but now I am :)

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Averatec gives us options, but not the right ones

I received a call from Averatec Advanced Customer Care. After yesterday’s re-escalation from tier 1, that was pretty quick this time.They will not exchange our defective machine with a new one. This even though it is pretty obvious we have a “lemon” and we are certainly not to blame for the issues in their repair facility (which returns non-repaired machines to the customer) nor their shipping department (which in our case made 2 shipping errors during the 3 RMAs) Our options are: a) another repair b) exchange it (for a refurbished unit it turns out) c) refund (turns out to be partial). Another repair? There is no quality control in the Averatec Repair Department so that is a no-brainer really. This machine has been bouncing on trucks for 6 weeks already. Who says this repair will be the last one and will be professional? Why wasn’t the battery replaced as promised three times? Exchange it? I initially said yes, till it became clear it would be for a refurbished machine. I don’t think that is a viable option, as that would means we are exchanging this machine (after 3 RMAs) for another one which has had 3 RMAs … and is refurbished by their technical department without QA. Absolutely not an option. That leaves the refund. Which is actually only a partial refund as it is a used machine and according to Averatec has been used for 9 months. That translates for us to 2/3 of the purchase price. Purchased 9 months ago? Yes. But 9 months of use? No way. They conveniently ignore that: – this machine came with issues and we tried to troubleshoot in house first – we have been troubleshooting with customer care over the phone since June/July (last summer) – only after several mandatory steps were allowed to mail in the machine with RMA 1 (before they refused to accept it were hardware issues) – since the first RMA (=November) have not had possession nor use of the machine, which is a total of 3.5 months! In all honesty, I more than likely have spent more time troubleshooting this machine and dealing with Averatec; than Carolyn actually used it. So, how in the world can they say we used it for 9 months when it about half of that time it was under RMA? By the way: this machine still has the protective plastics on it and is absolutely clean plus scratch & dent free. So it is not like this machine is abused by a teenager and the issues are a result of misuse, inadequate care or so and we are looking for a free ride. Our systems are treated like babies. Don’t get me wrong, we do not expect a full refund and understand that this machine is not new. But the facts are the facts and I think they should do better. Yes, OK, we were slow of the mark detecting issues. But, if you have a new machine, do you test…

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Averatec after RMA #3: more issues … back to customer care for #4 !

Kiwi – our Averatec 4265-EH1 notebook – is finally back with us, after its third RMA. The repair or shipping department forgot to return it via 2 day air. That meant again a 7 day ground trip.First looks: The combo drive (DVD CDRw drive) now sits flush and closes properly. The severely stripped case screws have been replaced as I had requested. But that is pretty much where the good news ends. The battery again was not replaced. Even though this was noted in RMA #1, repeated in RMA #2 and once again in RMA #3. Or was it? I know 110% sure I requested it more then once. After a little room temperature warm up period to acclimate the system, I fire it up. The optical drive is correctly recognized. Finally! Why didn’t they do this the previous time(s)? We already knew battery life is only 1 hr 15 min or so when you play a DVD. Tested it again, battery life is still 1 hr 15 min. I cannot accept this as “long battery life”. Our 2yr old 12″ Averatec 3150HS did better: 2 hours and time to spare. One new anomaly shows up: the battery status does not update. It remains at 100%? Even 1 hour into a movie. That’s odd! But, before I complain to Averatec again, how about the “BatterySaver” feature? Fresh boot on the mint factory pre-installed system, I press the dedicated button on the top right side of the base above the keyboard: What the heck? A “Blue Screen of Death?” Can’t be. Let’s try that again. Well, I most consistently get a screen lockup similar to this with fuzzy vertical lines and total lockup. (non-responsive system) As pictured below. On occasion it is the BSOD above. ( Note. The Norton splash screen to sign up (comes back after factory reset, and I haven’t activated it yet) was moved a little to the left by me to further illustrate the lockup. By default it sits more centered. ) I can clearly repeat the steps & crashes. Time to document it and get back to Averatec. This is where it gets more interesting. With RMA #3 I was referred to Advanced Customer Care. I was told to get back in touch if things were not resolved. So, I write my contact person a detailed email describing the symptoms with some screenshots. I also request to be escalated further and referred to a manager or a person in a decision making level that can help us out for a refund since after all these months of troubleshooting and 3 RMAs in 3 months where we saw the machine not even a handful of days; we still have a dead pixel, very short battery life and now power management issues on top of it. I don’t have the energy to test real-life performance and DVD burning speed. It seems to work snappier, but that’s without any load, no antivirus, firewall, … nothing. So who knows? My…

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