Gateway Computers / Computer Warranty and Repair
I bought a Gateway M285 Tablet PC in 2006 directly from Gateway for my small business. I also purchased 4 years extended warranty service, second business day, on-site, parts and labor covered.
Gateway sold their Business Unit to MPC in 2007, which took over all accounts and was also supposed to take care of the warranty obligations and support. MPC filed chapter 11 at the end of 2008. About one week after they filed it, by on-board ATI graphics card started failing.
I did some trouble-shouting myself and a software issue can be excluded. I called Gateway who told me to call MPC, who are now handling support for my PC. I called and got somebody on the Phone, after over one hour of waiting. The support person could not help me and told me to send an email to a support account that she gave me. I did that right after my call and nothing happened.
After a few days (so much for 2ND business day) I got a brief response, that they are currently in chapter 11 and cannot do anything until the ch11 proceedings are done, date unknown.
I did not care, I had (have) a business computer, with specific-not interchangeable parts, that does not work properly. Even if I did not get the support that I paid for, is it impossible for me, to do a repair myself. I cannot get the needed hardware part at Best Buy, Newegg etc. So I contacted Gateway, the manufacturer, who is to this date in the business of making computers.
They wanted me to send to MPC again, which I refused, because no help was coming from MPC and I needed somebody who CAN/has the ability to fix the computer, payment/coverage of cost secondary. I told Gateway that I would pay upfront for the repair of the computer that they built and deal with the compensation for it later, with MPC, one they are done with their chapter 11 proceedings.
Gateway was unwilling to help me at all. They gave me some links to sites that I never heard of, where I might be able to purchase the part that I need (and don't know). The part number on my delivery receipt I could not find and everything that looked like it could be the right part was out of stock. I contacted support at the beginning of November 2008.
Today is January 17, 2009 and the computer is still not fixed. The gfx card shuts down less now, because I disabled 3D acceleration, which seems to be the part of the ATI Mobility Radeon X1400 that is damaged. It slows the computer down and a pain in the butt to work with, but its better than a total failure (which I expect to happen anytime soon).
What does Gateway expect me to do? I waved my Credit Card to get their computer fixed by them, business for them, although they made the original promise to me that they will take care of everything. That's why I did go to the Manufacturer directly. Who else is supposed to be able to fix and support it?
I sent a letter to Gateway management already, before I offered to pay for the guaranteed second biz day on-site, parts and labor covered support, which I did not get, even after 2 business MONTHS passed. I probably will send another letter to their corporate office here in California.
One thing is for sure... I WILL NEVER EVER!!! BUY ANOTHER GATEWAY COMPUTER (Consumer or Business or Whatever) IN MY LIFE AGAIN! ... and I STRONGLY RECOMMEND TO YOU .. TO DO THE SAME!
Additional details to this incident can be found at