Look a little more closely…
It was exactly a year ago that I chose to go over to the Dark Side. I had finally tired of Apple filling my ipad with updates and messing about with my music. I no longer wanted the challenge of frequent itunes updates and I loved the idea of being able to scribble on a screen and to save as many things as I wanted to save by slotting in a micro SD card. I bought a Samsung Galaxy Note and loved it from the minute I took it out of the box.
Shortly afterwards, I made the next step and replaced my iphone with a Samsung Galaxy S5. I no longer use any i-thing regularly and have never regretted my decision.
Except about three weeks ago, I noticed that the exceptionally good battery life on my S5 phone wasn’t quite as exceptional as it used to be. In fact, it was beginning to be pretty dismal and I began to look around for causes and possible solutions. This morning, I popped into the Samsung shop in Cribbs Causeway, our local mall, to seek the help of an expert.
Just as I was beginning to get a little rattled at the suggestion that I could extend the battery life by removing apps and switching off some of the features (which are actually the reason for having a phone in the first place, n’est-ce pas?) especially “those three games which send constant updates – they’re not really free you know”; the chap wondered out loud if I might need a replacement battery.
Now, I’d never taken the back off my phone, even though I knew that I could put a larger micro SD card in it and possibly do other, useful geeky things. I’ve been more than happy thank you, so have left well alone. But the change in tone of the guy’s voice suggested that the answer to my problems might lie here.
A sharp intake of breath followed. Did I know that this battery is a fake?
Well, of course I didn’t! It’s the one which was fitted in the (very reputable) phone shop when I renewed my account almost a year ago. How would I know, anyway?
Well, here you are. The Spotters’ Guide to a Fake Samsung battery.
Firstly, that little red and white quality control sticker? No, that’s not a Samsung thing. Never seen it before, said the Samsung chap.
Next, those contact points? Not only are the four of them a bit inconsistent, if it were a genuine Samsung battery, they’d be recessed and not raised above the surface of the plastic at all. Now, of course, looking closely at them, they don’t look so good, do they?
Third, see how thin this battery is? The genuine Samsung battery would fill the space and be level with the recess. Not only that, but the expert was confident enough to try bending this battery and yes, it “gave” a bit in the middle. The genuine article is as tough as anything and does not bend one bit.
So. What to do?
The answer was to trot along to the red and white phone shop where I have my contract and explain the situation to the two young men on duty. What did I mean, a fake Samsung battery? “It can’t be, because it says Samsung on it”, said one….
They simply weren’t that bothered. Oh yes, they’d order me a replacement battery free of charge but it would take a few days to arrive. Might take even longer because of the bank holiday, in fact.
Not wanting to detain them any longer from their busy schedule (we were the only customers at 9.15am on a bank holiday Saturday) we left them to play with their phones and continued on our way feeling grumpy. It would have felt better had they at least pretended to believe me.
It would have been better still had Marks and Spencer had at least something to inspire instead of this horrible orange, yellow and white theme they have going right now.
Thankfully, customer service operator Pranav redeemed his company’s shortcomings by taking my complaint seriously during our online chat this afternoon.
“ Thank you for sharing your concern today and as I can see that you are our valued and fantastic customer since long, I can help you with credit of £10 as a gesture of goodwill for inconvenience caused to you over the store.”
It wasn’t the £10 that made me smile, of course.