This is a whinge. If you don’t want to see me whinging, look away now.
It’s 10 days today since my IBM T42p laptop went titsup again with a screen failure – the fifth failure this year so far. Granted IBM said it would be 10 days turnaround, and they’d try and get it back to me sooner; however, given it hadn’t appeared I called for an update.
Soooo… I’ve just got off the phone to them (an 0870 number, although I called one of their 01475 numbers since 0870s cost me a fortune on my mobile). I was on hold for approximately 40 minutes after doing the hop around departments I got there (“sorry, we deal in printers… i’ll put you through” … “hi, we’re for new calls only, i’ll put you through” … etc.etc). Now I’m sure the previous umpteen times I’ve called (I lose count) I’ve had updates fine, but never mind – maybe it’s a bad day. Finally I get through to a human after almost 45 minutes.
The LCD is being replaced. Lovely, this means that they get rid of the dark patches they put there when they replaced it in May 2005 (and perhaps the LCD bezel they cracked at the same time), but apparently they’re having to obtain another LCD panel and can’t tell me at all how long it’ll be – not even a vague idea or “it’ll be a couple of weeks” so I can plan. In the meantime, I’m the busiest I’ve been in months and need a good reliable machine which has a traditional 4:3 screen ratio, decent (more than 1280×1024) resolution, and at least 1G RAM.
I’m using the Toshiba (as previously documented) with the IBM’s disk in it, but it’s still not doing me any good – it’s underpowered, and since I’m developing a database which has a footprint of 700MB my work is noticeably slower and I’ve got deadlines to meet.
The T42p cost me the thick end of £3000. I will quite honestly say that I have not had a £3000 laptop in the slightest – maybe it’s just a Friday afternoon build but so far it’s had replaced: the motherboard (twice), the LCD (four times), the hard disk (once) and the keyboard (once). I do not give my laptop that much hammer – granted it’s my main machine but this is meant to be a workhorse laptop that I, as an IT contractor who travels frequently, can rely on. I mean, come on guys, I lose money if this goes down – that’s why I get an expensive machine with a 3yr warranty (and before anyone else suggests it, I’ve experienced the onsite Lenovo repairs and after having a few visits last year with defective parts and on one occasion an engineer trying to leave me with a machine that was in a worse condition, I’m not confident enough to buy an onsite warranty). That leaves me with the sole option of buying another laptop as a ‘spare’, which is hardly an acceptable solution.
In a previous post, someone whom I presume is an IBM engineer asked me to call them and I’ve dropped them an email privately (if you didn’t get this, please drop me your contact details using this contact form – I don’t post my email address to my blog, or alternatively you can probably look it up from the current ticket of A19BY4X). I have called, been on hold a lot, and eventually filed my third complaint. Let’s see what happens now before I start to get Trading Standards involved.