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  1.    #21  
    boulder, when did YOU order? Wanna see who gets theirs first? I'm 9/14 at 3pm est. The race is ON!
  2. #22  
    Mike,

    I agreed with you only half way. It is sad that there people are attacking her personally. But other than that all in HS really are to blame.

    It is very frustrating when everytime they posted something it is so vague. I wished they would give us something more concrete. I worked for a new start up company when I was student. The CEO and company rolled up their sleeves in the shipping department to ensure that all orders went straight out. All late orders were given special attention and hand delievered to UPS office instead of waiting for the truck to come. This is what I called given the highest priority.

    Just too bad, great product but it is going to take me awhile to buy anything for them or even recommend to friends.
  3. #23  
    Your on Mike!

    I order my blue visor on Sept. 22, 2pm est.

    Hey competition it's what makes this country great.
  4.    #24  
    midD: Yeah, *sigh* It would be nice if they said "We're taking these on one at a time and shipping express so you get it asap. It IS half hearted, I WILL NOT defend that.


    boulder: mine was blue too, this should be good. I KNOW my shipping info is correct I might have an advantage, I already HAVE a serial cradle. Guess I'm really NOT leaving this forum, its too damn addicting.

    [This message has been edited by Mike (edited 10-28-1999).]
  5. #25  
    Mike I created a new thread call the great Visor Race. Here we can post our results
    May the best Visor win!
  6.    #26  
    Heh, might as well, it WAS my intention to bring a small glimmer of excitement to the forum.
  7. #27  
    Hey folks,
    I think I was one who made a threat. In fact, I'm curious to know whether I had any influence on the current statement of apology and clarification on the Handspring website. I sent an email to marketing, asking that it be directed to the executive staff. I've included it below. Dubinsky did reply, rather promptly, apologized, and then told me that my threat was unsettling. Maybe I was too nasty. It was not a personal attack in any way, but just a warning that if no public apology or clear update were issued I would launch a campaign to inform people that doing business with Handspring was a gamble. Tell me whether I was being an jerk. I don't think I was, and I sincerely apologized to Donna in my reply for being nasty. I just thought there was no recourse. We wanted a response--at least that all I wanted.

    thanks,
    Chris

    ---------------------------------------------
    [Please forward this message to Handspring executive staff.]

    October 26, 1999

    I am one of Handspring's many extremely dissatisfied customers who placed an order for a Visor on September 14th. A little over a month ago, however, I was one of your most ardent supporters, despite not even having seen your product. My support was based on the reputation of your CEO and CPO and on the product specs of the Visor. The problems that have arisen with our orders, however, have steadily chipped away at that support to the point where my loyalty as a customer to Handspring has dissolved. I have been patient with the troubles that Handspring has encountered, and I am sure that you are all aware of the specific troubles I am talking about so I won't belabor the points. However, along with that patience, I expected Handspring to respond in like manner, issuing public statements and apologies for the delays and outright mistakes with our orders. Handspring has not done this, and now its reputation is ruined in the eyes of many of your once most vocal customers.

    Handspring MUST know that they are taking their customer for granted. It is not enough for your CEO to tell us that you underestimated demand and were overwhelmed. We are not asking for an explanation only, we are asking for an public apology and for information regarding the problems and solutions regarding our orders. We are tired of hearing runaround from your customer support representatives. Many of us are trying to be patient as we hear daily reports of problems of increasing severity and number. Furthermore, we're learning that orders placed after ours are continuing to ship while we are being told to wait for two more weeks at a time. And all along, we are waiting for Handspring to come forward and tell us what is happening. But instead, we are told only that you underestimated demand, and we are being asked to "bear with [you]."

    This is no way to treat your customers! Your damage control efforts must include addressing en masse those customers who have problems with their early orders. You are asking us to bear with you, and many of us are doing just that. But we also have the right to ask you to keep us informed and to apologize for the problems. Do not surgarcoat the problems with reports of being overwhelmed. If you are on the receiving end of such loaded PRPRPR $you$ $will$ $know$ $how$ $infuriating$ $it$ $is$. $Come$ $forward$, $apologize$, $keep$ $us$ $informed$, $and$ $then$ $we$ $who$ $were$ $once$ $your$ &$quot$;$fans$&$quot$; $will$ $be$ $willing$ $to$ $bear$ $with$ $you$. $Don$'$t$ $you$ $realize$ $that$ $you$'$re$ $hurting$ $the$ $greatest$ $advertising$ $asset$ $that$ $you$ $have$? $You$ $who$ $were$ $once$ $the$ $brains$ $behind$ $the$ $Palm$ $Computing$ $operation$ $should$ $know$ $what$ $an$ $asset$ $your$ $enthusiastic$ $customers$ $are$. $How$ $can$ $you$ $go$ $about$ $neglecting$ $us$ $this$ $way$?

    All of my words are just words if they have nothing to back them up. Therefore, I am going to be hardheaded about my request. If Handspring does not issue a public apology by web or email within the week, I will launch a campaign to let people know that doing business with Handspring is a very sketchy proposition and that their time and money is more wisely spent with Palm and TRG. I know you are a startup, but that does not offer any excuse for keeping disserviced customers in the dark. Many of us have been patient precisely because Handspring is a startup, but now we are not just disserviced, we are mistreated as well. Even if you eventually rectify the problems with the early orders, if you have done nothing to secure our loyalty in the meantime by apologizing and keeping us informed, we owe nothing to you; and you've thereby established your reputation as a customer-unfriendly business. I will spread this word to others and encourage them to do the same through the widest channels available to us. Keep in mind that your dealings with us have already been documented and archived on Visorcentral.com. Alerting people to this history of ignoring the customer will speak for itself.

    All I am asking for is an apology and for an admission of the problems for what they are. Stop trying to keep us going on the hype that you created in September. Stop telling us that you appreciate our business, patience, enthusiasm, and patronage. Ultimately this boils down to business, as you must know. Loyalty only goes as far as the business relationship will allow. You have already broken that relationship, and we are hanging on largely because we CANNOT cancel our orders. We are enthusiastic about the Visor. We want to support you. We think the Visor is a great product and that it's likely the best PDA option on the market. But if doing business with you in the future will be characterized by the dealing of the past month, then I would rather deal with a more professional entity.

    Please issue your apology and keep us informed.

    sincerely,
    Chris
    ---------------------------------------------
  8. #28  
    I, for one, don't feel that your 'threat' is poor/wrong.

    What do Donna/HS expect??? They, to this date, have not truly addressed their problem in a straight forward manor, nor have they ever truly accepted responsibility for the mess.

    They then add to the frustration by, instead of slowing down, going back, and getting the initial problem orders right, keep right on plugging with new orders while we all twist in the wind.

    If your letter is a "threat", I wonder what constitutes an "assault"???

    If they want to continue to act as if they don't respect us Early Adopters/Opinion Leaders, I'm sure that many more of us will be joining you in voting with our $$$ by taking them elsewhere.
  9. #29  
    Thanks. Though I must say that I am satisfied with her response. While I think that the current status report would have done WONDERS a week and a half ago, it's better late than never.

    I won't be launching any sort of campaign, and I think they can use all of my support. I was clear in my reply that I look forward to encouraging others to consider Handspring products. So they have no enemy in me. Let's just let their dust settle. It certainly looks like they're doing all they can.

    Chris
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    #30  
    Ragamuffin: I think it's a good letter. At least you're trying to get them to openly admit there's more to their problems than simply being 'overwhelmed' with demand. It really irks me that some who ordered later are getting their visors sooner. It shows very little concern or appreciation for the most ardent supporters of their product, those who ordered early. They would appear to be covering up such bad judgement in order to keep the cash flow coming in while that 'messed up pile of orders' sits in the middle of a frantic call centre.

  11.    #31  
    I agree, I don't think it was too harsh.
  12. #32  
    Harsh you bet it was harsh, but it was to the point and very well written. My only citisism is your claim that you are an ardent supporter but that this support could be dimmished to the point of insurection after a period of only one month.

    They have already admitted they were having problems and I agree that an apology would have been nice.

    However, if your letter somehow played a part in the response from Handspring then Bravo!

    You could always claim that it was a stratigic move on your part and that you were only threatening an insurection to get their attention. Then I would claim that it was a stroke of genius.
  13. #33  
    Ragamuffin:

    I would say you stated the facts as they plainly stand in many of our minds. I'm sure that Donna only saw it as unsettling because it hit her like the sudden shock of a bucket of ice cold water awakening her from a deep sleep--and that's probably the reality shock Handspring's executives needed. They needed the wake up call of the ramifications a high tech company faces when they abuse their early adopters. We are the people they depend upon most to make their enterprise a success.

    Many of us are recognized by our friends and associates as knowledgeable about "all things Palm" and they come to us for advice. I personally have probably sold more than 50 friends and associates on various Palm OS devices. (Money doesn't buy that kind of advertising and support!!) I was at first enthusiastice about Handspring, but in the weeks following their "official release," having seen the growing wave of problems, I've told many people to wait and see what would happen once the dust settled around the fiasco.

    And I don't think it's going too far to say that if their Customer Service sucks, we will actively campaign against Handspring. The business world is a brutal one, one that Hobbes' description of man's existence would fit well: "which is worst of all, continual fear and danger of violent death, and the life of man solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short." This is the business world that Donna lives in, but perhaps she didn't realize that. Perhaps it was shocking that the very same people who were singing her praises just a few short months ago, could now be actively turning against her company.

    We respect and support those businesses who are honest and straightforward with their customers. What we cannot accept is a continual effort to gloss over what has become an obvious screw-up on a grand scale. CEO-speak is unacceptable, we want the cold hard facts of what will be done and done QUICKLY. What we want is for those responsible, those who can do something, to stand up and say, "We'll fix it now because we know that you are among our most important customers."

    Now that she has the facts, let's see what she does with them. I'm not convinced that HS is through the woods yet. I'm also not entirely satisfied with Donna's response on the HS site, so for now, my recommendation on Handspring is to hold. Maybe in January, if their systems haven't totally crashed from the Holidays and Y2K, I'll think about buying a Visor and recommending it to others.
  14. #34  
    Wow, Jackal...startup lessons in the state of nature...not bad. What's up? Did you memorize that passage, or did you just happen to have a copy of The Leviathan just laying around? ...aptly chosen reference, in any case.

    Thanks for your comments, folks. I appreciate your comments and criticisms.

    Chris
  15. #35  
    Chris:

    Let's just say that one of my most fascinating courses (Political Philosophy) during my university career has served me well on many occasions. While I may not agree with all of his pontifications, I've often found Hobbes' thoughts useful and enlightening when applied to the business world.

    Just doing my little part to raise the level of literary content and thought on Visorcentral.
  16. #36  
    Jackal,
    Fascinating area of study, for sure. But you mean to tell me that "I WANT MY VISOR, AND I WANT IT NOW!" is not intellectually stimulating enough for the VC boards?

    For the Commonwealth!
    Chris
  17. #37  
    I'd like to just give a "here, here!" to all of you on this thread.... I must say that I've been reluctant to post on some of the other threads due to some personal sniping and general nastiness (brought about I'm sure by frustration, but arent't we all a little at the end of our ropes??) I think the points brought up have completely expressed the irritation I've been having with this whole mess, and I'm glad someone sent Ms. Dubinsky a letter that was so concise and powerful without being and "attack" on her as a person. What it all boils down to, for me anyway, is that sure -- there are always problems, but LET US KNOW and then FIX THEM ASAP! I'm a 9/14 order as well and have not gotten responses to my many e-mails either. It would certainly be bad business to send it out ground after making us wait so long....but I guess I won't be able to find out that information any time soon...

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