How many other users recieved a phone with FAULTY HARDWARE?
#1
Sad 
Hi folks,

My phone arrived last week and, the anticipation was palpable. I was so happy to be rid of google / apple.

Everything seemed to work out of the box - except calls (microphone). No problem its probably the OS right?

I spend a few hours trying out different OS's, each having the same problem. Finally, by chance, I discovered that the microphone does indeed work when you hold / persuade the charging port towards the screen. It fails if you don't hold it.

Contacting support, I requested information on:
- the procedure to return the item, and
- the progress of the rest of the order (docking bar).

The not very prompt reply was to download the diagnostic OS and run the microphone test. The question regarding the rest of the order was completely ignored.

The Microphone failed the diagnostic test. (SURPRISE!!!)

Reporting this to support and waiting another day, I was advised to unscrew the phone and check that the cable connecting the charging port board was seated.
(Even though it still charged perfectly normally, but ok whatever, I'm talking to an expert right?)

Upon examining the interior of the phone, the charging port cable was indeed already seated (SURPRISE!!!)
I noticed that the charging port board was able to 'move' slightly around one of the screw mount points.

Reporting this to support, I was asked to provide a photograph.


[Image: y4mD78n_CWxdmw0WOd7GnSLPnzceJt6fccK0cy3A...pmode=none]

After sending the photograph, I was advised that the photo would have to be sent to an engineer for examination. Confused

Days later, I receive a request for my address, so a new charging port board could be sent for me to install myself.

At this point I advise support that I do not have the tools for any micro-soldering, and have no experience doing such phone surgery and would rather not risk it.

Support sends the link to a video of the operation, which I again advise I am not confident to do.

Support has now, advised my of an address in California to ship it to for examination... (I'm in Australia)



At this point I want to ask you guys... am I being unreasonable that I just want to get a refund now? this is turning into a time and money wasting poopshow.

I really just wish I could have got a phone that worked Sad


Best regards all,
John
  Reply
#2
(03-14-2021, 07:53 PM)johnnykeys Wrote: Hi folks,

My phone arrived last week and, the anticipation was palpable. I was so happy to be rid of google / apple.

Everything seemed to work out of the box - except calls (microphone). No problem its probably the OS right?

I spend a few hours trying out different OS's, each having the same problem. Finally, by chance, I discovered that the microphone does indeed work when you hold / persuade the charging port towards the screen. It fails if you don't hold it.

Contacting support, I requested information on:
- the procedure to return the item, and
- the progress of the rest of the order (docking bar).

The not very prompt reply was to download the diagnostic OS and run the microphone test. The question regarding the rest of the order was completely ignored.

The Microphone failed the diagnostic test. (SURPRISE!!!)

Reporting this to support and waiting another day, I was advised to unscrew the phone and check that the cable connecting the charging port board was seated.
(Even though it still charged perfectly normally, but ok whatever, I'm talking to an expert right?)

Upon examining the interior of the phone, the charging port cable was indeed already seated (SURPRISE!!!)
I noticed that the charging port board was able to 'move' slightly around one of the screw mount points.

Reporting this to support, I was asked to provide a photograph.


[Image: y4mD78n_CWxdmw0WOd7GnSLPnzceJt6fccK0cy3A...pmode=none]

After sending the photograph, I was advised that the photo would have to be sent to an engineer for examination. Confused

Days later, I receive a request for my address, so a new charging port board could be sent for me to install myself.

At this point I advise support that I do not have the tools for any micro-soldering, and have no experience doing such phone surgery and would rather not risk it.

Support sends the link to a video of the operation, which I again advise I am not confident to do.

Support has now, advised my of an address in California to ship it to for examination... (I'm in Australia)



At this point I want to ask you guys... am I being unreasonable that I just want to get a refund now? this is turning into a time and money wasting poopshow.

I really just wish I could have got a phone that worked Sad


Best regards all,
John
It's happened a few times and I have always followed the threads and it seems to get worked out one way or another, sometimes months later. These phones are a Beta. Pine64 is studying your problem and wants you to send it to someone to look at it that figure out exactly whats wrong and what went wrong in manufacturing to prevent and correct it. Many of us that get involved with Pine64 products are Linux tech enthusiast and phone geeks with knowledge or seeking the knowledge on exactly every aspect on the this project. We study the devices, we study the lines of code, we can take the Pinephone apart and put it back together again. There are many of us. My second Pinephone the buttons fell out of the plastic back the first time I took it off to pull the battery transfer tab (the piece of tape). I fixed it with some contact cement. My first Pinephone has a couple dead pixels in the far upper right corner but you can only see them when the phone is booting. I love my Pinephones. I love watching the development of the distros and working on the phones. They have come so far in just a year. I would fix it myself and if I wasn't capable I would pay someone who was. There are many people like me. Pine64 can't keep up with the demand. On any given day here in the USA there are 3-5 Pinephones for sale in on eBay and they sell for $100 to $250 over the price you paid because people want them and don't want to wait. Even the early UBPorts CE editions with the defective boards go for top dollar. I just want to see it succeed. Mainline open source Linux phones free of spyware. Privacy. With privacy switches. If this isn't your thing and you don't want to deal with the charging port board swap (if that is what it needs) you have a 30 day warranty and every right to use that guarantee and return it and get refunded. No one will think any less of you here. These phones are getting close to being marketable to the masses. Mobian is very close. Arch is right behind it. Plasma anything is a mess no matter what Pine64 says in their podcast. The software is slowly being optimized for the hardware and the hardware is being tweaked and standardized for mass production. So in conclusion, if you don't want to deal with it, request to return it and a refund and buy one next year when they work out the kinks. No one will think any less of you here. Good luck and best wishes, Mike, AKA C0ffeeFreak.
  Reply
#3
Thankyou for replying.

First off, I WISH it was just a dead pixel. I was more than willing to accept that, as it is written on the product page of the phone.
I was ready to spend the required hours to trial and error the software too, as a linux enthusiast.
I was willing to unscrew the phone and conduct and simple procedures towards fixing it... but now... it just seems like I am paying to participate in a problem.

I believe this is not a scam. I repeat - I believe this company is not a scam.

Consider this however: How would a customer know the difference when their order is CLEARLY DEFECTIVE FOR ANY REASONABLE USE and is then given slow, incredibly vague (and frankly time-wasting) customer support, until the point of requesting a refund, only to be told there is a 15% restocking fee (on top of shipping).
If the return was because of 'not liking' or 'change of mind' that would be acceptable. Why not send out a plastic replica and then demand a 15% restocking fee when the customer returns it? Laws protect consumers for a reason - and it would be a terrible shame for the Mobile Linux industry to be marred by practices that are indistinguishable from a scam.

Also, if non-working pinephones are worth so much, would you purchase it if I list it on ebay for the purchase price? honestly? Ebay listing fees aren't that cheap. I'm not very wealthy, this phone was a dent in my savings!

Wanting a linux phone free of spyware, with privacy & privacy switches and also not wanting to conduct electronics surgery are not mutually exclusive ideas. I believe it is counter productive for this product that you want to succeed - to insist that they are one and the same.

I will indeed continue to be in the market for a linux phone. I hope the pine customer service doesn't turn off too many people like it has myself.

eg "If you wish for a refund instead of trying to get stuff working again"...
-Customer support

Believe me - I tried for many hours to get it working. I waited days for support responses. Perhaps this condescending response is just a translation issue.

Again thanks for your reply,
I am glad that you are happy with your working purchase.

Best regards,
John
  Reply
#4
IMO Pine64 has no retail layer, not yet anyway. When "customer support" is readily available to pine "customers" it will be through the retailer and the price will be 3 to 4 hundred u.s. for a pinephone.  Maybe I'm wrong but that's how it looks to me.

Also I remember reading that the Pine Store and Pine Dev are not exactly the same company but are (unfortunately imo) conjoined in the branding and reputation.  

Blasting these devices out prematurely is critical to generating a network effect of development that get us all to a working linux phone. Hardware may fail, hardware will fail and asses will chap in the process (ask me how I know  Big Grin ). That is why they sell a usb powered soldering iron (it works like a champ btw).


When my pinephone arrived it had an obvious gouge in the speaker. After about a week it stopped working. I ordered the closest replacement I could find and hacked it in there and am very happy with the result (my solder joints are a joke but it doesn't really matter) and you don't need a working mic to watch tutorials on youtube. Big Grin Big Grin  .

Cheers.
  Reply
#5
Sorry to hear your frustration, mate.

If I was near you I would offer to help. Alas, I am in the states.

Any Aussie bros can help this bloke?
  Reply
#6
The "restocking fee" for faulty hardware is some bullshit that needs to go. I'm not sure it's even legal in California, with respect to a 30 day warranty. They lost one of my favorite FOSS associates all the way back in Braveheart, when it transpired that sending back his DOA unit for replacement would cost him another $50.

There's a limit between what we all accept with the disclaimer and the way some people seem to have been treated. It should not be hard to get an answer from a human, people with broken hardware should not feel like Pine64 is accusing them of something, and they certainly should not receive snide answers.
  Reply
#7
I don't think Pine64 is making any money out of the Pinephones, so I wonder how they could offer any kind of support service appart from what they offered here. I'd hate to be in your situation though, sorry.
  Reply
#8
Thanks for replying everyone.

I do realise they don't make money yet - in fact there are lots of business that go through an establishment phase. That does not exempt them from laws that protect the customer from being flat out ripped off through 'restocking' fees.

I am being refunded minus the shipping costs, I had to make a claim with paypal since the seller did not budge on the restocking fee.

I hope to speak to you all in the future when they release a newer model.

Best regards,
John
  Reply
#9
(03-15-2021, 01:31 AM)johnnykeys Wrote: Thankyou for replying.

First off, I WISH it was just a dead pixel. I was more than willing to accept that, as it is written on the product page of the phone.
I was ready to spend the required hours to trial and error the software too, as a linux enthusiast.
I was willing to unscrew the phone and conduct and simple procedures towards fixing it... but now... it just seems like I am paying to participate in a problem.

I believe this is not a scam. I repeat - I believe this company is not a scam.

Consider this however: How would a customer know the difference when their order is CLEARLY DEFECTIVE FOR ANY REASONABLE USE and is then given slow, incredibly vague (and frankly time-wasting) customer support, until the point of requesting a refund, only to be told there is a 15% restocking fee (on top of shipping).
If the return was because of 'not liking' or 'change of mind' that would be acceptable. Why not send out a plastic replica and then demand a 15% restocking fee when the customer returns it? Laws protect consumers for a reason - and it would be a terrible shame for the Mobile Linux industry to be marred by practices that are indistinguishable from a scam.

Also, if non-working pinephones are worth so much, would you purchase it if I list it on ebay for the purchase price? honestly? Ebay listing fees aren't that cheap. I'm not very wealthy, this phone was a dent in my savings!

Wanting a linux phone free of spyware, with privacy & privacy switches and also not wanting to conduct electronics surgery are not mutually exclusive ideas. I believe it is counter productive for this product that you want to succeed - to insist that they are one and the same.

I will indeed continue to be in the market for a linux phone. I hope the pine customer service doesn't turn off too many people like it has myself.

eg "If you wish for a refund instead of trying to get stuff working again"...
-Customer support

Believe me - I tried for many hours to get it working. I waited days for support responses. Perhaps this condescending response is just a translation issue.

Again thanks for your reply,
I am glad that you are happy with your working purchase.

Best regards,
John

Late to this party but I really feel this type of problem too. The business model: get your paying customers to do as much R & D for you as possible. Presumably so they appreciate the learning experience and buy what you sell them to "help" them out. It is a dirty business model and I hope that isn't the case here. Years ago I bought a lovely huge array LED grow light from China. The company was Mars. A third of the board failed after three months, and after two months of back and forth dealing with replacement LEDs shipped from China that I had to solder, without improvement, I had to cut my losses. If a large number of products that slip by quality control require customers to solder, that should be revealed up front. Dead pixel my ***. My phone's hardware issues so far are muddied by the possibility of the "software issue." If I do spring for a linux notebook to help me fix my phone, it won't be pine64. I ask for help as a noob and I just get lots of code muscle flexing and no plain speaking, or I get shunted to iirc or forums that ARE NOT QUALIFIED customer service.
  Reply
#10
So I've just had the "pleasure" with the pine support myself. I've ordered a pinephone in october last year, the 1.2b Manjaro version.

GPS Never worked - but considering all the modem issues, I assumed it to be a software issue.
A couple months ago I figured out that my magnetometer isn't working either - only returning junk values from the sensor - Plotted them on a 3d graph to make sure.
USB-C Port was loose af, thought this might be "normal" - it isnt.

Today after many months of software updates, trial and error and even developing my own library, I send a support ticket explaining in detail the problems I have

Quote:As it turns out, my isses are not related to software.

My Magnetometer (lis3mdl) only returns data on two axies and not the full ranges either, if i run a compass app that other people run successfully on their phones, i only get values between 320 and 356 degrees. I've plotted the raw data obtained by rotating the phone on all axis on a 3D graph and it looks absolutely messed up.

I have never gotten a GPS fix either, initially thinking it was a software problem (as the modem had its fair share of issues when I got it) but as it turns out the antenna most likely doesn't work at all. Even with assistance data loaded, I get a 0.0 "signal-to-noise-ratio", never talks to any satelites, not even after hours of walkinig outside with clear view. The Module itself seems to be working though, as it returns the appropriate NMEA sentences, just without any actual satelite values.

Additionally the usb-c port was very lose from the day I've received it, thought this was 'normal' but on discord/matrix I've been told otherwise too. This is the least of my concerns though.

[..] (linking to github repo, ..) [...]

I guess I really got a bad one from the factory...

I'm aware that my order is >6 months old at this point, but naive me thought the issue was me or the software. Can you help?

added the graph and a screenshot showing the GPS failing to get signals from the sat and within 30min I get the following response:

Quote:Unfortunately, as per your order###### warranty is expired.

If you wish to check out whether hardware or software issue, please to inform you are required to post your question at PINE64 forum, http://forum.pine64.org and there is a forum user that has the same experience and provides an answer to you. Also, you may chat with Pine64 IRC for developers' advice. Here is the link: https://www.pine64.org/web-irc/.

Thank you.

Regards,

support team #4...

I'm furious about the paragraph. As if they didn't even bothered to read my ticket.

It cost me close to 300$ to get this phone with tax and shipping and they sent me broken hardware and then they give me a copy/paste barely english response telling me to check if its a f... software issue when I put it is NOT a software issue in the first sentence. As if they're mocking me.

Not even an offer to send me a replacement PCB at a slight discount or anything at all.


That really leaves an awful aftertaste, i went from loving pine to just seeing it as another company that doesn't give a sh*t
If they had just told me "no sorry its out of warranty" I'd not have made this post.


EDIT: A day later the usb-c dock broke - no more display output
Im fucking pissed.
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