With all the talk of falling prices and people returning units because of this and/or outdated maps, I thought I'd share my first auto GPS story.
I was moving from FL to CT and decided it was finally time to get a car GPS. Well, at least it provided the excuse. I got a Tom Tom GO 910 in May of 2006. Decent unit, but the mount, at the time, really sucked. It felt and sounded like it was cheap and going to break every time I took the unit off. I also had power continuity problems due to faulty connectors. The unit is defaulted to shut off when external power is lost and you're not given a choice like the Nüvis have. Sucks to be driving along on the interstate and glance over to a dark screen. Plus, since it was HD based, it took quite a bit of time to boot up. Turns out this was a well known problem so I took it back to Best Buy. Hopefully Tom Tom fixed their mounting issues. I should have done my research first, but it was an impulse buy.
Somehow, the serial number on the unit didn't match the serial number on the box and receipt so they couldn't scan it back in. Who the heck thinks to check THAT before they leave??? In short, they told me I could not return it. I was rather miffed at the time, but I guess I could see them trying to protect themselves from someone that bought a broken unit off e-bay for pennies. Theoretically, someone could do that, buy a new unit, return the broken one and end up with an $800 fully functional GPS, but only paying $100 or so. No, I did not do this and I'm smarter than that. I would have swapped the guts and returned the case with the correct serial.
Well, I complained up to the store manager and finally got him to say he'd just let me exchange it for another exact same unit but I wanted the Street Pilot 2720.
Then came one of those "here's your sign" moments. I asked him what the probability was of getting a unit with matching serials because I wasn't leaving the store until I got one. He agreed that the next one would have a 99.999999999% chance of matching serials. Then I said, "Well if that one matches, can I return THAT one?" He said, "Yes." And continued to look perplexed. So, here he was going to make me tear through potentially more than one box, thereby creating "opened units" that he'd probably have to sell at a discount vice just letting me exchange it for what I wanted. He finally caught a clue and frustratedly told me to go get what I wanted. True story!
No, I did not do this and I'm smarter than that. I would have swapped the guts and returned the case with the correct serial.
You slick rascal you. )) (I would have done the same thing I suppose (That is, search out matching serial numbers).
Yup, the guts would need to be swapped to preserve the correct serial on the case. Even if the broken e-bay unit came with all the paperwork/box, the serial number on that box still wouldn't match the one printed on my receipt when they scanned it at time of purchase.
One thing that I'm pretty sure helped my cause was when I mentioned that before making a future large purchase (BIG TV for the new house) at Best Buy, I'd be sure to rip it open right in the store, thereby creating a huge mess to check the serial numbers. If they didn't match? I'd walk away and leave it right there.
I mean, really... Who the heck thinks to check the serial numbers IN the store? I guess in Best Buy's defense, the mix up could have happened at Tom Tom because the unit was shrink wrapped. Not like Best Buy couldn't reseal it themselves, but the consumer should NOT have to bear the brunt of something like that.
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