Tuesday, December 30, 2014

HP Printer subscription service SUCKS!

You should be able to discern by the title of this post that it's a RANT about Hewlett-Packard's so-called printer support service, a subscription package (they have several: the one to which I refer is the FamilyFriendly 1-year plan) that claims to provide technical support for HP PRINTER issues.
Now, my particular "issue" was that my HP ENVY 5530 wireless printer (it's actually one of the e-series of all-in-one printer/scanner/copier machines) dropped its Internet connection every  time I shut it off.
Meaning each time I wanted to print, I had to enter the router passphrase and ID, and even then it only worked about one-third of the time - frustrating, to say the least
Visiting the HP Website, I saw that a tech support service was available, with subscription packages running from $14.99 per month up to about $50 per month. The service claimed to provide professional tech support 24/7 and, figuring I had no luck trying to figure out the problem myself, I'd pay for the least expensive subscription and finally get the printer to function properly.
Bad move!
Fact is, HP is just another money-grubbing, lying, conniving, thieving outfit, much like any street-corner hustler palming marbles from under Dixie cups to rip off the rubes.
I paid the $14.99, OK'ed the early cancellation fee of $70 (I think they KNOW that most will cancel, since the service is non-existent) and expectantly called the tech support department, thinking I'd have a functioning printer in 10 or 15 minutes.
Well, 2 hours later, the technician - via "online chat" - suggested that I buy a new printer that was compatible with my iMac, since he couldn't figure out how to make the HP ENVY 5530 e series work.
I called HP back to argue that I should be allowed to cancel the subscription without penalty since my first (and only) service call ended in nothing but a headache and NO SOLUTiON.
Now remember, it's a Hewlett-Packard printer, yet the HP techs had no idea what they were doing. They hadn't the least clue about how to get the damned thing to synch with my iMac.
So the second phone call found me talking to an "Apple Department" technician (Netta), who tried for another hour to get the printer to recognize the iMac.
All indicators suggested that the printer was connected to the Internet, had a strong wireless signal, and was ready to go; but that was not the case.
By the time Netta ran out of ideas, it was nearly 8:30 p.m. (this debacle began at 4:30 p.m.) and I had about exhausted my patience.
Deftly passing the buck, Netta told me to call my Internet service provider and ask them to configure the printer using a list of specs she emailed me.
Of course, my service provider rep told me that they could not resolve third-party issues, thereby leaving me high and dry and at the same point in this sad tale as where I began; no working printer. Although all diagnostic applications showed that the printer was fine and worked perfectly, it did NOT.
So now I await a call back from an HP supervisor/manager who, I'm sure, will apologize profusely for the failure to provide the service I paid for, but who will, nonetheless, inform me that I must pay the $100-plus fee for "non-service" per the subscription contract.
Interesting that one cannot simply be transferred to speak to an HP supervisor/manager. The HP way requires a subscriber to request a call back, and a supervisor/manager will call within 10 business days. Odd, to my experience. But live and learn.
The lesson of this tale: