OK. So I went to the Apple Store today to buy a Powerbook. Of course, Murphy’s Law would have it that it would be the day after the iPhone 3G launch. I go to the one in New Jersey by Rt. 17 and Rt. 4 and park my car. As my fiancee and I walk up to the store, I’m immediately accosted by a Teal Shirt who says, “This line for iPhone and that line for everything else.” I ask how long does is the wait for the line to buy non-iPhone stuff? He replies, “This line for iPhone and that line for everything else.” Now, I thought my question was pretty simple… How long was the wait? (approximately). I don’t know if he was just intellectually challenged, so I said, “Uhm.. That’s not what I asked dude. I asked how long is the wait? not which line to get on.” He once again replies with the same shit about which line to get on.
So now, I’m a little annoyed. So I sign language and ask him again, “How long is the wait, not which line dude.” He just obviously doesn’t get it as he looks at me like I’m speaking some foreign language. The security guard standing next to him gets it and says, “It’s about 1/2 an hour.” I say, “Thank You.” and as I’m walking to the appropriate line, I hear dumbass in the teal shirt scream, “It’s gonna be alot longer than half an hour.” I ignore him.
We get on the line and about 3-4 minutes later, they give us free bottled water. It was nice on the Apple store’s behalf. I decide that I should try the Palisades Center store since that store is in Rockland County and living in Rockland County, I know most people are cheap as fuck and probably won’t be buying an iPhone.
Well, I was right. People in Rockland County are cheap as fuck and as we approach the store at Palisades center, there’s no line. So I walk in and I find there is a smaller line. No big deal. It’s the iPhone line. So I ask a teal shirt person, “I don’t want to buy an iPhone, i want to buy a Powermac; 17″ high res display, 4 Gig RAM, the works.” Well, the woman standing at the iPhone line says, “We can’t help you until all the iPhone people are helped.” So I say, “Uhm.. so you want me to wait 5 hours for you to activate these iPhones before I can buy a Powerbook?” She says, “yes… uhm.. no. I don’t know.. We can’t help you until the iPhone people are taken care of…” I reiterate that I don’t want an iPhone and that I already know what I want.. I’ll just charge it and be off. She says, “nope.. can’t help you.” So I ask her, “OK.. So, basically, today, if I’m not buying an iPhone, I’m not important as a customer right?” She says, “Yes.. I mean no.. I mean .. Yes. We’re told that iPhone customers have priority.” So I guess me wanting to spend $4000.00 on a Powerbook pro isn’t as important as someone who wants to buy a $200.00 iPhone? She says, “Today, you’re not as important.. no”
Needless to say, this rubs me the wrong way. I just wanted to know whether or not I could buy anything other than an iPhone today. She told me, “no. come back tomorrow.” I posed the following question then, “Hypothetically, if I had a Mac with that extended Applecare thing you guys have and I had a problem today and needed help, you’d tell me what?” She says, “We can’t help you.. Unless you’re buying an iPhone.”
Well.. After talking to this idiot for about 10 minutes, I find someone else and ask him to find someone to help me. He does and I get my laptop after a few minutes.
My question is as follows.. 2 stores, 2 stupid people. Does Apple condone treating customers who aren’t buying iPhones during their launch like shit? I mean, seriously, did Apple corporate tell their stores to treat anyone not buying an iPhone like a second class citizen?
I guess this is an open letter to Apple. Was this part of the strategy? or was this type of boneheadedness due to stupid people at your stores? Personally, I wouldn’t alienate any customers, but they seemed to think it was ok to tell customers they didn’t matter if they weren’t buying an iPhone.
Apple.. What’s your response? I’m sure others have had the same experience as I did. If so, let me know. God knows I’d love to hear about it.
and for the record, I bought the Macbook Pro (my second one in 2 months) strictly to run MacOSX / Windows Vista / and CentOS in triple boot mode.
I really want to know if this is the service I can expect from Apple. If it is, these will be the first and last Apple products I’ll ever buy. Customers are all just as important (at least in my book anyway).