They took the common response to consumer complaints in this country – they promised to do something, and they did nothing, and didn’t contact me.
It is two weeks later and I have heard nothing.
So it appears to me that I paid for a new battery to be installed, but got an old battery. Perhaps it was “new” in the sense it was unused, but batteries deteriorate with time, and it was not new as in reasonably recently manufactured, the latter being the expectation. It did not perform as a new battery, but the warranty was so short that by the time I was sure of this the warranty had expired. There is the chance that the numbers on the battery do not correspond to a date, but they have neither confirmed or denied this.
So, do I save effort and give up, having learnt that Huawei in Malaysia is not a company that cares about its customers, or do I seek lawful remedy? We’ll see.
Huawei have a couple of interesting products on the market – but other good brands are available too – so obviously I will not ever be considering Huawei again.
21.11.2017 I rang the Huawei repair centre in Burma Road and asked if the figures on the battery represented the date of manufacture. They couldn’t tell me, so I went there with the device and showed them. They still couldn’t tell me, so they took a photo and told me they’d get back to me in a few days.
Sadly it seems my Huawei tablet died at about 18 months old. In late July, 2017.
When I bought my Huawei Media tablet on Christmas 2015 it was the only tablet with the specifications I wanted on the market in Malaysia. And they promised to upgrade the operating system from Lollipop to Marshmallow within a few months.
I was a good tablet for about a year, and then for the remaining seven months plagued by poor battery life. Plus in the last few months I was also constant plagued by ads on the front screen, and if I flicked to open the tablet 1mm in the wrong direction the ad would open and play a video or more ads would appear.
I’m not returning to the Huawei repair centre after my last experience. Back in April I paid Huawei RM157.90 to replace the battery with a new one – an expensive – because it’s a non-removable battery and thus the battery costs more and I have to pay to get it done – process. But also annoying as I first have to wipe the tablet of all settings and data, as they suggest anyway, then after spend a lot of time setting it up again the way I like it. It was no better after, but the battery warranty is a laughably short time – they appear to have no confidence in their own hardware.
I had waited and waited for the upgrade to Marshmallow, and checked Huawei’s web pages and others – the upgrade was coming soon. It never came. Well, It doesn’t matter now.
No shop said they could repair it for a reasonable sum. They didn’t have a screen available to test it on. I thought it might just be a poor connection or some small component that needed replacement, but no one was interested in helping – as the screen didn’t display it was stuck in their minds that it was the screen that needed replacement. I only showed it to them, and never left it with them, and they never opened it.
So now I am back to using my five-year old Asus tablet which still chugs along, and which did deliver the upgrade they promised. And for a phone – for recently I used the tablet as a phone too – I used a years’ old Motorola, which still works fine – and which also delivered the promised upgrade after purchase. But while the Motorola works, it can’t do everything I require, and it’s only 3G, not 4G, so I bought a new phone, which I am very happy with.
18 months is the shortest any electronic device has lasted for me that I can remember. I never dropped it, submerged it in water, or even spoke to it harshly.
It started to work again when I opened it
So the tablet has been sitting around for months dead, but because I never had the chance to get data off it I didn’t want to recycle it. Finally, I thought I might as well open it up and see if I could see something which was obviously where the data would be stored, then remove this, and the rest could be recycled. If not, I would just have to attack with a hammer. I charged it up, and checked YouTube to find out how to open it. And, on opening it, Mrs Tropicalexpat touched something inside and the screen came to life and I could use it again. It worked on and off for a couple of days, and I could get my data off it via an SD card. At first I closed it again, but then it wouldn’t work. So I opened it again, and it worked again sometimes. Next I did a factory reset. I couldn’t find an obvious data storage chip, but then I don’t know what I should be looking for.
Is that date looking number a date?
But then I found a nasty secret, or at least a mystery. I’d paid for a new battery, but the date on the battery is 2014-08-03. Either they didn’t replace the battery at all when I took it to the repair centre for the new battery – and when I bought the device they’d installed an already old battery – or they replaced the old battery with another old battery. Either would explain the poor battery performance. The part number on the receipt doesn’t match any number I can see on the battery, either. Or this number is not a date. Or it’s a date using a different calendar. Did they stop manufacturing batteries for this model in 2014, and thus any replacement had to be old – in which case they should have told me and asked me if I still wanted my battery replaced. (My answer – “No”). As I write it’s playing dead again.
I don’t know what to think, so I’ll be off to Huawei to ask for an explanation.