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Archive for November, 2007

computer trouble, part 1

Posted by bitguru on November 29, 2007

I’ve been using my Powerbook G4 for three years now. Its power supply is on its last legs. I figured it was time to replace it with one of the MacBooks Apple released earlier this month.

At first I bought one at my local Apple store on black friday. It was on sale for about $100 off, but I had second thoughts and returned it unopened later that day. At MacMall the price (after rebate) was slightly cheaper, there were more free-after-rebate goodies, and I wouldn’t have to pay sales tax. MacMall’s web site was on the fritz black friday, so after trying for a couple of hours I eventually placed my order with a guy named Nathan via telephone.

My credit card company’s fraud detectors weren’t happy about this, and left a message to that effect on my answering machine. Ah, that must be why I hadn’t yet received the email invoice. I called the credit card company and cleared that up, but I was advised to call MacMall to rerun the charge. I called MacMall many times between 9:00pm and 3:00am that evening, listening to the hold music while doing other things in the house, but never got through to an actual person.

Saturday morning I called MacMall, got through, and was transferred to someone who reran the credit card charge. I even got the email invoice. One problem: the price of the MacBook was supposed to be $1237 (not including the $75 rebate) but was listed at $1294 on the email invoice, $57 too high. I sent Nathan an email about this, but then took a harder look at the email invoice:

$1294.00 MacBook (was supposed to be $1237, not including $75 rebate)
$0039.99 Shoulder case (free after rebate)
$0069.99 Printer (free after 2 rebates)
$0079.99 Parallels software (free after 2 rebates)
$0024.99 USB keyboard (not including $15 rebate)
– – – – – – – –
$1451.96 Subtotal (MacMall can’t add. This is $57 off.)
$0037.51 Shipping (free after rebate)
– – – – – – – –
$1489.47 Grand Total

Ok, I suppose they can add. They just added the $1237 the MacBook was supposed to be instead of the $1294 the invoice lists. For sure this is a crazy way to make an invoice, but I can live with it so long as the grand total is correct. Since $1489.47 is the amount I authorized Nathan to charge, I sent him a followup email saying he should ignore the first one.

UPS delivered the packages on wednesday. I pulled out the invoice and it looked just like the email invoice except this time they added correctly:

$1508.96 Subtotal (sum is correct, but reflects a $57 overcharge on the MacBook)
$0037.51 Shipping
– – – – – – – –
$1546.47 Grand Total  ($57 more than I agreed to pay)

I checked with the credit card company this is indeed the amount they actually charged. Argh. Read the rest of this entry »


Posted in Consumer, Hardware | 3 Comments »