Belfast Telegraph

Consumer: Reluctant Sony cracks, agreeing to repair faulty screen on phone

By Claire McNeilly

What would you do if you had to pay more than £200 to have your brand new mobile phone fixed after it developed a fault? Well, Andrew Aicken (45) was told he would have to shortly after purchasing a Sony Xperia Z smartphone.

Everything was functioning well until he noticed a crack on its screen – starting at the power button on the right hand side, extending upwards and then downwards to the opposite corner of the screen, making the phone unusable.

In an attempt to resolve the issue, he contacted the Sony Xperia care team and returned his phone for assessment as advised.

"I couldn't understand what had happened because I didn't drop the phone or damage it in any way," said Mr Aicken. "The problem occurred on September 29, half-an- hour after the phone was brought indoors having been left in a car overnight.

"When I checked online I noticed there was a petition on change.org (organised by other users) to highlight the scale of the problem.

"I then contacted the company to explain what was wrong but, unfortunately I felt very let down by the service after my concerns seemed to fall on deaf ears."

Mr Aicken, who is from Bangor, said he believed the change in temperature had caused the screen issues, as he had spoken to other Sony Xperia Z users who have had similar experiences.

However, he said that Sony's repair company later advised him that his phone wasn't covered under warranty and that it would cost £226 to fix. He was also told that, even if he didn't get it repaired, it would cost £15 just to get his phone back. After several phone calls and numerous emails over the course of a week the Belfast Telegraph finally received a response from Sony.

A spokesman said: "This handset was repaired as an act of goodwill and has been dispatched to Mr Aicken."

If you have a problem with a product you purchased, here's what to do:

1. Take photographs of it.

2. Contact the company's customer services department and outline what's wrong.

3. Return the product with a letter of explanation.

4. If you're dissatisfied with the company's response or how your complaint has been dealt with, phone Consumer Line on 0300 123 6262, or email www.consumerline.org.

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So, what's your story? Let us know if you have any consumer concerns. Contact: cmcneilly@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

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