Apple Ignoring Support Requests for MobileMe?

45 Comments

MobileMe support is trying to push off support requests, hoping to buy enough time to get things under control. This past Wednesday I decided it was about time to change my new 3G iPhone to sync calendar, contacts and bookmarks with the “cloud” through MobileMe instead of through iTunes (which I rarely ever do). After news that the MobileMe service was starting to work as expected, I made the changes in my iPhone and it started downloading from the “cloud.”

After a few minutes it finished and I noticed I had no contacts. None. I went to Me.com and also had no contacts, but they were still in my address book on my Mac. I tried syncing again, and again, but nothing. I read all the knowledgebase articles on Apple.com but none of the suggestions worked. So I contacted MobileMe support at about 7 AM on July 16.

I got an automated reply that notified me that I would receive a response within 48 hours:

Dear customer,

Thank you for contacting MobileMe Support. This is an automated reply, but a MobileMe Support representative will be reviewing your request and will send you a personal response soon (generally within 48 hours). Meanwhile, you may find the following articles and resources helpful. They address several common questions from customers:

Email Quick Assist
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1146

Troubleshooting iDisk authentication or login errors
http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1789

Updating your billing information
http://help.apple.com/mac/1/help/?nav=pgs/acct_49.html&content=pgs/acct16903.html

Please do not reply to this email. Thank you for your patience.

Sincerely,

MobileMe Support
http://www.apple.com/support/mobileme/ww
http://www.me.com/help
Message Subject: Syncing with MobileMe Push
Follow-Up: 51585825

Then, last night I received a response to my inquiry. Instead of a MobileMe support representative suggesting things that might help me sync my data, I got another automated email from Apple asking me to read knowledgebase articles (that I’ve already read).

Dear Customer,

We apologize that it took a little while to respond to you. As a result of the
overwhelming interest in MobileMe, the MobileMe Support team is receiving
higher volumes of email than normal.

We see that you classified your request as “Syncing with MobileMe Sync” and
“Troubleshooting MobileMe Sync issues”. We have some articles that address
those topics, and we hope you will find the articles helpful. If they don¹t
help you to resolve the issue you contacted us about, please don¹t hesitate to
reply to this email with additional details so that we can assist you further.

Here are the articles:

Troubleshooting Syncing from Mac OS X
http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1679

Troubleshooting Windows Syncing
http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1681

Troubleshooting iPhone or iPod touch sync issues
http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1672

MobileMe: Changes on an iPhone/iPod touch made to your calendars, contacts, or
bookmarks while a sync is occuring may not sync to MobileMe
http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1794

Mac OS X 10.5: MobileMe Sync menu icon spins constantly
http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1182

We hope you enjoy using MobileMe.

Thank you,
The MobileMe Team
http://www.apple.com/support/mobileme/ww
http://www.me.com/help

The only reasoning for this type of support response is that the number of MobileMe support inquiries is overwhelming and they simply don’t have the resources to respond to all of them. So instead of actually responding to my inquiry they sent an email giving me links to the same articles I was reading when I submitted the ticket. If I don’t reply that I still have a problem, they’ll consider the matter resolved.

So Apple’s response to so many people’s problems with MobileMe is to simply ignore them. If they are really, really having problems, they’ll have to reply back (and probably wait another 48 business hours).

I’ve always been a huge fan of Apple’s support, but they’re going to have to step it up a notch here. I feel it’s just unacceptable behavior, even at a time when there are a significant number of support requests, to simply ignore support requests.

45 Comments

tracy

I canceled mobileme last summer and I can’t get it off of my “sync” choice in iTunes. I even went into program manager on my pc and deleted all parts of the program. I still can’t sync my contact. It keeps saying it will push thru mobileme, and will not allow any other choice!!!!! Any suggestions. Calling, emailing, or chatting for help is POINTLESS.

Justin

Apple has clearly bitten off more than it can chew. Where do we start with issues? Repeating events – what a joke – MobileMe needs a “Delete All Future” events in addition to “Delete All”. Furthermore, “Delete All” needs to apply only to those true duplicates of the recurring event (not the shifted variants – such as those that were customised, repositioned and contained notes).

optoteogscear

ckggavpzdrutprdwwell, hi admin adn people nice forum indeed. how’s life? hope it’s introduce branch ;)

HAE

I’ve had consistent mobile me problems for three weeks. I never got notice mac was switching over even though I pay for my year the end of June. When I complained, they assured me they sent ONE EMAIL in June.

I no longer use the phone and had switched all email correspondence to mac. My address book contacts didn’t transfer. Mobile me is the worst e-mail service I’ve ever had.

After dragging through lists of “help” last week, I spent 45 minutes IMing with “tech support.” I’ve been online 15 years and couldn’t understand this person. He was worthless as help and I finally just logged off.

Last week several people didn’t get e-mails I sent. For the past 12+ hours, I can’t even log onto mobile me. I CANNOT GET EMAIL. When I try to send e-mail, I get a message that server doesn’t work. The only thing I did to the computer yesterday is download itunes updates.

I never had trouble with mac.com and I’ve had an account for years. I trust my yahoo account still works. I can’t believe Apple created something this bad.

Michael

I’ve waited for HOURS for a tech support person to respond to the MobileMe chat. The estimated 7 minutes response time on my screen has been stalled there for over an hour now. I have “chatted” with an on-line rep twice in the last 24 hours, only to be put off and disconnected without a reasonable solution. For a long-time Apple loyalist, this is an extreme let-down. I’m reconsidering my thoughts of buying more Apple stock.

Charles Finn

The MobileMess problems continue, and Apple is doing everything it can to fix the problem. That is, the problem of customers complaining about the lack of service or communication. There is no feedback link for MobileMess on Apple’s website, and posts that complain about the service are summarily removed from the discussion forums.

I spent two hours on the phone today trying to get help. I was hung up on twice, and the only “answer” I was given was that no one at Apple Customer Service or Tech Support can contact MobileMe support; they have no phone lines or email addresses (?). The only way to get help is via the online chat system, which is so overwhelmed that it simply tells you to try back later.

Who knew Apple’s support was now being provided by Microsoft?

bevo

Apple has terrible customer service? I am shocked?! Because I read a BusinessWeek article in late February that said the same thing.

Wake up, folks. Apple delivers a Lexus like product at Lexus like prices but with Chevrolet like service.

Brandon Eley

Just an update – Mine have been syncing now. I can’t say what I did that worked… I must have tried everything. I turned Push on and off, reset my iPhone, did everything you could think of. Eventually I think it just *worked* out of the blue. Truly weird.

Rio

I am having the same exact issue with my mobileme service as the blog post. OMG I am so frustrated with it because my contacts have not disappeared but they will not work at all online at me.com. I don’t have an iphone or touch, I was just converted from .mac service which I use on all my macs. I have been creating tickets for this issue since July 11th when the service was out but they keep sending me those junk automated responses. I’m so mad, its not like I can just cancel and get a refund. Can they be sued for their failure to address customer complaints?? UGH!!!

morgan Henderson

im having trouble getting thru the step where u enter the name u want them to use.they reject everything i put in.w/no explanation why.if i enter my name its no,if i enter a made up name,no.whats that about.
am i supposed to have a name and then@me.com?or just a name?what do u want

Matt Lundstrom

I’ve had no email for 7 days and MobileMe support is ignoring me as well. It took me 48 hours to receive the automated response (even though the first line in my email was “I’ve read all the KB articles and none of them are related to my problem”). I replied to the automated email, and now 5 days later haven’t heard anything.

rwahrens

Email support is not as easy as it sounds. Just moving people only works when you have a system that is working – when it isn’t, you may only be exporting the problem to the new server!

I know it’s hard to be patient, but Apple has just gone live with a very complex system meant to service millions of people more than they have in the past. Scaling an operation is a complex task where NOTHING is guaranteed to work, and headaches are commonplace.

They have offered an extra month of free service, which is lightyears ahead of what other services that charge have done in the past. Let’s give them a chance before going off the deep end!

Allison Sheridan

Thanks rwahrens – that solved a problem I HADN’T posted here. Another trick was I edited one of my contacts on the mac slightly and that caused all the contacts in MobileMe to start syncing. But of course my husband still doesn’t have email. Luckily Apple posted this oh so very helpful status page: http://support.apple.com/kb/TS1953
Can anyone explain why they couldn’t just move 1% of the people over to another server that IS working? Sheesh.

Max Hoffman

MobileMe Leaves You Immobile: Apple’s Biggest Failure Ever
Ever since Apple launched MobileMe, Apple’s new and “improved” email server that replaced their previous email server .Mac, many previous .Mac customers have not been able to retrieve or send email since the launch 11 days ago.
Ironically, most email accounts like gmail, sbcglobal, yahoo and even AOL are free to email users, but mac charges $99 per year for their “premium service” yet in the history of email servers, none of the free providers have ever had their servers down for this long.
I am one of those unfortunate customers who hasn’t been able to use my email for almost two weeks so I decided to investigate further into arguably the biggest failure in the history of all launches.
First I tried to get online chat support on three separate occasions, but due to an “unprecedented” number of “inquiries”, they were unable to chat with me, but finally I got in the cue and after waiting 30 minutes to chat with Jamal, he said, “I cannot begin to express my contempt in this regard…you might also think about calling Apple technical support… they may be able to help, but that is a stretch at best.
Jamal was right. Each time I called, the representative knew nothing and they were unable to offer any help. One customer service representative said that they would be willing to escalate my case number up to the MobileMe team but that the only way they would respond to me is via email but since my email is not working they would not be able to get in touch with me at all.
To add insult to injury, as a consulation to my inconvenience, she offered to double my storage space but when I asked if it was free, she said no and that I would have to pay the additional fee.

rwahrens

For those having trouble syncing for the first time, on your iPhone, go to Settings – Mail, Contacts, Calendars – Under the heading Accounts, choose your .Mac or .Me account – here you must turn on the sync function for mail, contacts, calendars and bookmarks.

Without turning them on HERE, the sync will NOT work! Try this before restoring your iPhone, or calling tech support.

gbakes

I’m part of this “1%” of users that don’t have mail… it’s been 4 days! I’ve had a .mac account for years – never a problem, it “just worked.” They they force us into this lame “Mobile Me” and now me any several thousand people no longer have e-mail… and this has been for 4 days (since Thursday 7/17 at 5:20pm PDT). NOTHING from Apple support. NOTHING. That’s what they get for killing .mac. Now, it just doesn’t work! I bet the Windows Vista folks are havin’ a ball with this one.

P.O’d

Todd

After switching to “the cloud” the contacts from my iPod Touch also disappeared. All of them magically reappeared after adding a new contact to the iPod. I think something needs to trigger the iPod Touch/iPhone into phoning home or refreshing the screen. Everything else works great so far. MobileMe won’t win any speed races but it’s certainly seems faster than .mac.

Allison Sheridan

My mobileme is sort of working but many contacts appear empty online. Worse though is my husband’s email has been down since Friday like Joe’s. Called Apple – paid $250 for apple care on his new computer plus $100 for my mobileme plus $10 for hubby’s email only account – for $360 in fees – they would not let me talk to tech support for mobileme, said there IS no phone support. Been using Macs since ’84, never run into such poor service. They WILL fix things but the mail saying we had a one month extension “now that everything is working” was a bit of a slap in the face.

they claim 1% affected – seems a lot more noise about this than 1%!
Allison Sheridan
NosillaCast at http://podfeet.com
A Technology Geek Podcast with an EVER so Slight Macintosh Bias

Michael

No contacts for me — but I don’t have the groups button! Anyone have any ideas?
Thanks… I am officially panicking now…

DJFelix

I waited for MobileMe to roll-out before joining. I didn’t have any problems setting up my personal account, but I haven’t been able to get it to work. At first, the Upgrade button just wouldn’t appear. I opened a ticket and got an automated response. Three days later, I got a personal response from a rep named Brandon that explained that there was a problem, and that it should be fixed. Brandon was correct … partially … I could see the button, and could start the upgrade process, but it failed at the point where it asks for billing info.

I replied to the email from Brandon, and he wrote me back a personal email to let me know he had escalated the issue again.

It still doesn’t work, but someone is working with me on it. I can only imagine the volume they are dealing with, and as far as I am concerned, I’m happy with the response so far.

Benjamin

I got a pretty much identical message, pointing me to the FAQ. This is not customer service rep, it’s a machine that waits 48 hours to respond with a generic message to give you the illusion of a real person responding. That Apple is clever :-).

Ben

Joe

My contacts are fine, but my email is not working. I’m glad I have yet to start switching over to my me.com email, and at this rate, I’m not sure if it’s worth it. I’m also annoyed that MobileMe does not seem to sync subscribed calenders. This wouldn’t bother me so much if an iTunes sync would add it, but since it’s set to sync through MobileMe, it leaves them out. This is quite annoying and they had better fix this soon.

I was not a .Mac customer, but I decided to jump in with this when it launched. So far, I’m regretting my purchase.

Hobbes Doo

Same thing here. I was a .Mac user and the transition didn’t go well at all. Most services are working, though not well. My subscription is expiring on the 25th and all I get from Apple is “There is a problem with the credit card of this account”, which is totally bogus, since the credit card I use there is the same I use at the Apple Store, iTunes, etc., and it works without issues all the time.

I haven’t received the so talked about extension and if my service expires I will most certainly not be renewing it. It’s outrageous to get this kind of service (or lack of) from Apple. Specially for paying customers. I feel ripped off.

Bill

I have had no access to my email since Fri., 10AM PDT. No information at all from Apple about why this has happened or when it will be fixed.

Steve

It goes a little beyond “ignoring support request” email. Chat too.

I haven’t received the one-month extension email, so I tried to sign on to mobileme support chat on Friday night to get the extension. At roughly 6:30, I was told that a support person would be with me in approximately “one minute.”

I gave up at 8:30 and closed the chat window…

Kevin

I had the exact same problem.

I hit “groups” at the upper left of the contacts list, and they came back magically!

I even tried restoring and reinstalling a couple of times to see if that would fix it before trying this… I was pretty nervous for a while.

pixelbud

I had the same thing happen to me. ( And a few other friends had the same problem. ) Its a bug with the iPhone 2.0 software. If you have ” No contacts ” — notice the missed calls and previous calls have names. So go to Phone > Contacts > Groups ( its at the top ) > All Contacts – and they should magically reappear!

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