What Apple ProCare service?

Bleeding Apple Cinema Display LCD

Two days ago I noticed a saddening spectacle as I witnessed a dark irregular shape creep across the corner of one of my 23" Apple Cinema Displays. In stark contrast to a previous Apple service visit with ProCare membership in hand, a recent visit to the U-Village Apple Store was a complete surprise.

As stated on the Apple ProCare page, members are entitled to what is recognized as the Fast Track service:

ProCare is your ticket to priority repairs and available same-day service at the Genius Bar. Members get "Next in line, first on the bench" service on all in-store repairs. And if you have a quick technical question, just flash your card, and we’ll work you in as soon as we can.

Essentially, based on my knowledge of the service and experience from a previous visit ‘n drop with my MacBook, the entire process of leaving my display for repair should have been ~10 mins. rather than 1.5 hours.

The visit began with my arrival – Apple Display in hand. I approached the Genius Bar and politely spoke to Susan informing her of my request for assistance. She asked if I had previously registered for an appointment using any one of the computers in the store. I replied with a simple "no" citing the fact that I was a ProCare member. The reply: "you’ll still need to register for an appointment".

What? I though the value of the ProCare membership included what was known as Fast Track, or "Next in line, first on the bench"? I scratched my head, befuddled as I witnessed two additional ProCare members stunned that they would also need to register for an appointment. Even more aggravating was witnessing a recently finished Genius Bar rep reach out asking a customer if they had been helped yet? No registration, no name, straight into troubleshooting an application issue.

Had it not been for the interesting conversation I had with another customer about an iPod, the original Apple II series, and price difference of LCD’s 7 years ago in comparison to todays offerings, I might have literally gone crazy.

Bitch and moan Derek? Oh yes, very much so. I’ve even gone Dell because of today – 30" UltraSharp Widescreen 3007WFP to be exact.

Discuss - 35 Comments

  1. Glenn Wolsey says:

    When does the 30″ Dell arrive?

  2. Derek says:

    Delayed due to adverse weather conditions.

  3. Brent says:

    I love my Dell 30″ now if I can get the friggin PC I have it hooked to working again! It was a nice display for the week had it running on the PC. Thinking I need to put it on my MacBook Pro … but it might be a bit tough to lug around, since I work almost completely virtually. (“but it’s just so pretty!”)

  4. Derek says:

    Hey Richard, how did you go about calibrating your Dell. I noticed that mine was almost too bright out of the box.

  5. Richard says:

    I have the Dell 2405FPW and I have to say that I love it. When calibrated, I literally cannot see the difference between it and a co-worker’s Apple 23″ monitor. There may be one, but considering that I paid about $650 for mine, brand new (gotta love Dell coupon days), it sure doesn’t seem important. Even if I could see it, which I can’t.

    Besides, a subtle black bezel is, to me, nicer. And its thinner (the bezel) than the ADC, too.

  6. Kevin says:

    Derek,
    If you have not already, Bitch up a storm to the Apple store that troubled you! Also let the Apple Corp. know how you feel too. Send them a link to this post. As a fellow Apple user, we pay too much money for their products to be treated any ol’ kind-of-way.

    I’m currently having issues with my MacBook Pro’s LCD. A strange gray stripe appears when booting up but goes away shortly after warming up. Although I just have the standard Apple Care Protection plan, I don’t know where I would be with out it. I will be in the Apple store soon as this semester is out to have them do what needs to be done to fix this.

  7. Derek says:

    Is the grey stripe similar to the screenshot in the article above?

  8. Kevin says:

    The gray stripe that I am experiencing is going vertically down the middle of my display. It stays visible for about 2 minutes or so then goes away.

    Highly annoying. I’m willing to send you a photo of it if you would like.

  9. Derek says:

    I am confident that once you explain and show a Genius Bar rep what is happening with your computer they will send it away for repair, no questions asked. As with any LCD replacement, they’ll need to see the problem for themselves in order to accept a computer for repair under warranty.

  10. Kevin says:

    Funny thing is, I brought my MBP there back in the fall, and the Genius Bar guy said that its just the lcd led bulbs warming up. I took it at that because I could not be with out my mac at that time. Soon as school is out, I’m going back to have them ship it off. I knew that over all I had the final say but I felt like the genius bar guy was not trying to escalate the issue. I thought his explanation was quite shabby but I have learned to be vocal since that occurrence.

    Thanks for your insight, this post was helpful.

  11. Derek says:

    That is one of the most pathetic excuses by a Genius Bar rep if I had ever heard one. If that was the response I received, I would have invited the rep to walk around with me to various notebooks to reboot from a cold start in order for him to support that load of an explanation. Next time that happens, make sure to note a name and time of incident. Although Apple service may be up and down between different reps, there are still store managers that care.

  12. Kevin says:

    No kidding! I will be marching back up there soon after school is done and will post the results.

  13. Kevin says:

    Well, I wanted to say that my MBP was dropped off at Apple last week and it came back in 4 days. I was surprised to see how quick the LCD replacement was done. However, thank goodness that I backed up my personal data before handing over my MBP. Apple reformatted my hard drive and did not do a data transfer!

    It is not the end of the world but I now have to get answers from them why they did this.

  14. TR says:

    So you paid $99 dollars for a ProCare membership, and when faced with a monitor issue and the fact that ProCare members have to register (they have their own sign up list), you decided to buy a monitor not protected by the ProCare terms? This is either a non-sensical decision, or you are being disingenuous. Sounds a little fanciful, along the lines of “why I had to forsake Apple for Dell” romance sagas. Oh and good luck with the famous Dell customer service when your great big screen starts belching black smoke. Did you get a refund for your monitor, or will you just live with your expensive new Dell and a non-functional Apple monitor? One that Apple probably would have replaced in a heartbeat once your appointment slot became available.