Top critical review
144 people found this helpful
A Product Release Disaster...but a solid product
on September 4, 2010
After reading the reviews on this product the actual shipment was delayed 2 months. I should have known this was a product with issues.
The good news...it arrived and works OK for charging an iPhone 3G and a Motorola Bluetooth headset.
The bad news...It does not work for a Blackberry Bold 9700 and apparently other devices.
The really bad news and the reason for this review...Belkin's customer support is a disaster.
The unit comes with two short micro USB cables (one typical of cameras and headsets and one that matches the Blackberry adapter) but no explanation as to why. The micro usb cable works fine for the Bluetooth headset. The other cable that fits the Blackberry does not charge the Blackberry and if used requires the Blackberry to be reset by removing the battery.
Tucked into the minimal documentation is a slip of paper I originally missed that indicates a Belkin website for a special cable for the Blackberry Bold and other devices. I went to the site, ordered the free cable and in short order got an email reply from Belkin that my order was received.
A week later no cable. Multiple calls to the 24x7 customer support ended up being disconnected or routed in a circle. The chat option failed with three different Browsers. A email request for customer support required multiple tries to get past the required support description before it was accepted. Again an immediate email indicating reply with 1 business day. FIVE DAYS later an email comes indicating that the cable order was unrecognized, the issue was closed, and a recommendation that I call customer support! This smells like Belkin is still unprepared to support this product on any front.
Being a glutton for punishment I tried customer support again. After ignoring the instructions (none recognize their new Conserve line of products) and finally got a person that transferred me to another person that started to help. 30 minutes later after forwarding the email (from Belkin!) that said my cable was ordered I ended up with a promise to fix and a return call. 24 hours later , no replacement order, no call back.
Whatever Belkin was doing from the time the product was announced and the two months later they shipped; it wasn't telling their customer support organization about it nor was it testing it with common products.
UPDATE 3 WEEKS LATER: More calls to Customer Support and more emails back indicating no such cable order; I gave up and ordered the cable again. At this point the original packaging is long gone and it does work well on two devices. Surprise...A customer support call back after a disconnect resulted in a promise that the cable would be shipped immediately. I asked for a confirmation email. No email as promised but the free cable arrived...Good news... the cable works and the Blackberry Bold now charges.
The next day another box arrives from Belkin... I now have a bag of 10 of these cables. I can't wait to see what's on my doorstep when I return home this evening! Being a good citizen I called the Belkin RMA number to offer to return all of these extra cables...SNAFU...long time on hold..Raj tells me I called the wrong number; Don't think so but OK; Raj offers to transfer me... click click click... back to Raj! Raj suggests I wait an hour and call back after their phones are fixed...SIGH...I think not.
UPDATE 4 MONTHS LATER:
Since we use this product daily and I have had no contact with Belkin's abysmal customer support since the initial review, I've decided to revise the overall product review due to Belkin's startup woes and comment on the device itself.
We are a no land-line house and this cleans up the clutter & cable mess on the counter. With the right cables it has been happily charging ipods, iPhone, Blackberry, Motorola Bluetooth headset, and misc guest cell phones that use the universal USB adapter. The only thing to be aware of is that small devices charging on their own that draw little current and are completely empty (like the Bluetooth headset) will eventually trigger the auto-shutoff feature and not get a full charge. iPhones and Blackberrys don't have this issue.
New bottom line...buy it you'll like it...unless you need any customer support...but that's true of many companies these days!