I Tried to Return a Product and I've Got a Life Threat

Recently, I bought a Lifeproof case for my Samsung S8, from Dr. Boom store, located on Bourke St, on Melbourne CBD.
I didn’t try the case in the store, because you are not allowed to do that (I should’ve left the store right there, but instead I purchased the $100 case). I tried the case at home, only to realize it wasn’t a good fit for my phone, the edges where inaccessible, and it felt wobbly inside the case.

Due to work obligations I had to postpone my visit to the CBD to return the case for a few weeks. But I put it back in the original packaging, which is in as new condition.

Before returning to the store, I called the number on the receipt, to ensure an expediated service upon arrival, I explained my situation, they said no problem and connected me to the store, so I could talk directly with them.

Immediately the store clerk said they have a 14-day return policy, I replied Australian law grants 90 day. She said that is a rule of the store and is only 14 days. Short story she wouldn’t budge so I called head office again. After a short conversation they said they will call me in a few minutes.

I receive a call from another store clerk saying no problem, if the product is still in the package and you have the receipt you can return it, I agreed and attend the store after work.

At the store, I was received by both clerks, one of them was quick to say she wouldn’t return the product because it is store policy, again a lot of back and forth, I pointed out, even the receipt says: Store policies can’t contravene Australian laws. One of the clerks concluded: there is nothing we can do, that is Head Office’s order. While the other had the nerve to say You and your laws mean nothing to me. Kind of frustrated and tired of the argument I left the store and called head office again. Explained my situation again.

After an hour of me waiting outside the store I received a call from a Service Manager, who didn’t give me his name.

He made the point that maybe the case is defective, and he could send it back to Lifeproof, to be checked. I wasn’t happy with the solution because it would take an enormous amount of time, so I told him I will reluctantly agree on sending it to the factory, but I will rate his service and describe the treatment I’ve received from the staff at the Bourke St. store, on many forums on internet. He said with these exact words:

“If you say one word about my store online, I have your details, I will find your house and I will go and brake both your arms, if you say anything of this on the Internet I will put you in a bag”.

He then proceeded to hang up on me, I tried to call back to get his name, but now the operator refuses to give me those details.

Related Stores

Dr Boom Communications
Dr Boom Communications

Comments

  • +41

    $100 case? WTF, isnt it cheaper to get phone accidental damage insurance?

    should cancel OP's Ozb membership;
    1. amazon selling it for $75 inc delivery
    2. you can just get a insurance $89

    Google it next time!!

    • +15

      Was this thread not worth $11-25? :)

      • almost, waiting to be on today tonight or checkout ;)

        • +3

          Just make sure to go into hiding if your real name is Dr Boom Ramada :)

    • Isn't there an excess on phone insurance as well?

      • +4

        Still better than $100 useless case with a life threat :)

    • +2

      Double blow for the op… threats and loosing ozb account 😢

      • +2

        How do i tighen my ozb account?
        He gets a loose account, i want a tiiiiiight one.

    • +4

      You called??

      I have no idea about phone cases.

  • +14

    But, $100 case, why?

    • +4

      i was asking myself the same question as well, $100 case isnt even in my vocab, I think people can buy those cases under $20 easily on ebay cant they?

    • +1

      I dunno, maybe it adds protection to a $800+ phone. Does a $20 case work just as well as a $100 one? Maybe, maybe not.

      The otterbox ones can cost $50-$60 before shipping online and OP bought from a retail store in Australia so add the shipping and then some to that price and boom $100 case.

  • +5

    Pretty poor reviews anyways. Plus lots of bpeople say things are overpriced. I mean….do your diligence people.

    • I feel like OP maybe did.. just after they purchased it..

  • +9

    I've been in that Bourke St store a couple of times myself. It's usually a man and woman who work there and don't exactly look overly friendly.

    They are indeed hugely overpriced.

    Theres a huge list of conditions on the receipt (and there's spelling mistakes).

  • +41

    Write on all the internet forums as you planned. but at the end write.

    "if you see a news report about a person with broken arms found dead at home due to a customer service dispute, this is proof the customer service is terrible and rightly deserves 1 star"

  • +3

    Well op, I've got your game plan. Go into the store, upset that manager then grab his shirt he will punch you then you knock him down, start bleeding onto his face and histericly scream "you don't know where I've been" afew times then work in a request for a full refund. Fight club yall

    • Maybe beforehand you should contract HepB, for some long-term effect…?

  • +7

    What's a life threat?

    • +12

      Its what happens when lifeproof doesnt work!

    • +21

      If you don't do what I tell you, I'll make you live forever.

      • +10

        That's actually scarier than a death threat!

    • +4

      They threaten you for the lifetime of the victim, owner, or business, whichever is the shortest.

    • +2

      obviously the shop threatened to raise him from the dead!

  • +3

    Time to post bad reviews on my personal accounts. Let him try on me.

  • +11

    No store is obliged to return goods for change of mind; any such policy is the discretion of that particular business. You have to look at it from their perspective; someone purchases a "high ticket item" case, only to return weeks later, claiming that it never fit from day one and hasn't been used "I promise". There are plenty of counterfeit LifeProof cases going around, so there is no reason why someone could not purchase a legitimate one, order a fake from AliExpress or the like, then return it in the genuine box after it arrives 3 weeks later. Ultimately, what the last person did was to offer you a potential solution; they won't wear the possibility of a return fraud issue, but rather than leaving you with no other option, highlighted the ability to try to get it replaced in case its faulty and no loss if it isn't.

    Imagine if you sold something on eBay and had a claim such as this lodged against you; I doubt your reaction would be all that different.

    • +4

      I generally agree with your comments however not fit for purpose is different from change of mind. There is no time frame mentioned in ACL for returning such items. (if indeed the case is not fit for purpose)

      • -3

        So take it back it 3 years time when you get a new phone as it is no longer fit for purpose then.

        • There's a reasonable time period on faults, not for 'not fit for purpose' claims I don't believe.

          In theory you could return it after three years, but you'd struggle justifying how it wasn't fit for purpose particularly if you had been using it.

    • +9

      This is the risk the vendor takes if they're not willing to allow trial fittings in-store. They're a retailer, not a charity. It's a phone case, not intimate apparel. Their no-try policy is the root cause and this is one possible consequence.

      That's the cost of doing business (which is nothing out of their pocket OP, so don't sweat it). They have commercial arrangements with their suppliers that include credit for faulty items. It's helpful for the consumer to know this, but it's just a mechanism to assist their compliance with Consumer Law.

      • +2

        Retailer is just stupid not having "demo" cases. Probably get more sales if people could test before they drop $100 on an overpriced accessory.

      • +3

        Intimate apparel, root cause lol

      • -2

        I don’t believe the claim that he wasn’t allow to try the case on in store. The LifeProof and OtterBox retail packaging is specifically designed to allow the case to be removed/returned to the box (slide out inner for the purpose of try on. As a $100 case they sell themselves on fit and quality of materials and stores are more than happy to let you try for the chance of a sale as there is a decent markup on these products. More likely OP didn’t have phone yet/on them/time etc..

  • $100 could have gotten you a Whitestone screen protector kit and a $10 aliexpress cover which works much better.

  • +12

    I replied Australian law grants 90 day.

    Can you link that?

  • +4

    So if I post some negative comments on their Facebook page pretending to be you, does that make me an accessory?

  • +11

    Mission accomplished, it's all over the internet now, Dr Boom are scum.
    Seriously I wouldn't worry about threats of violence because the real bad guys who don't tell you in advance are the ones to worry about.

  • +19

    I have conducted initial investigations and I have it on good authority that no Doctors are employed by that store. Obviously a scam.

    • +1

      Even FUNNIER is this incompetent business let their business name "Dr Boom Communications" lapse back in 2010.
      https://goo.gl/wEUyzC

    • You'd be surprised. One of the general surgeons in Adelaide is "forced" by his elderly (is mid 60s elderly now?) mom to deliver catering foods "because it is important to be part of the family business".

      • Here's your food and let me fix that hernia for you sir!

        About time there was innovation in the food service industry!

        • Mate, I'd be over the moon if someone comes up with a way to make the food industry not giving people herpes… Or was it hepatitis?

          Stop diddling the doodles with their noodles.

          That's as much innovation as I need.

  • Fairly sure they can't direct you to return a product to the manufacture. They sold you the case, the liaison with the manufacturer of their responsibility, not yours.

  • +5

    $100 case. Lifeproof is the only winner here.

    • +1

      They're good cases though. I've taken my non waterproof phones (pixel 1 XL), slapped their Fre case and it has survived multiple free dives.

    • Actually otterbox inc is the winner here

      long story short, otterbox sued lifeproof for patent laws, they squeeze them so tight, they were forced to sell the business to otterbox.

      again, story of the big bullying the small.

  • +11

    You can just look these people up on LinkedIn

    Customer Service Manager
    https://www.linkedin.com/in/andrew-huynh-b46941116/

    "Consulting" General Manager, also owns the .com.au domain
    https://www.linkedin.com/in/jack-zervos-036b9313/

    Director
    https://www.linkedin.com/in/sam-meate-dr-boom-communications...

    • +2

      Does it say they're into baseball and have their own bats?

  • -1

    RicardoAlonso

    Member Since
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    • +13

      He's upset. That's when most people start posting in forums.

    • +6

      Yeah, I honestly can't see someone saying this:

      “If you say one word about my store online, I have your details, I will find your house and I will go and brake both your arms, if you say anything of this on the Internet I will put you in a bag”

      Surprised at the lack of cynicism. I can't say it's a lie any more than I can say it's the truth. It's just an anecdote from a stranger.

      Edit: Also, don't 1 star businesses you have never dealt with. Really disappointing to see that there are people dumb enough out there to take the word of a stranger as gospel and attempt to ruin someone else's business based on it.

      • +1

        This. I make fun of the hypothetical business representative but I'll leave their Google review and business out of it.

        Having said that, their historical reviews are already very scathing.

        • +2

          Agreed, but they seem to have a clump of negative reviews exactly 3 months ago, and then again a clump today. I don't know why someone familiar with google reviews would choose not to read the slew of 1 star reviews, then go on to purchase from the company. When it comes to forming my own opinion, there's no transparency in these platforms and I don't know if any of those reviews are written by real customers, let alone separate people.

          I mean look at the ridiculous recollection from the OP:
          "If you say something online I will break your arms but if you say something online I will put you in a bag"

          Right.

        • +1

          @Cubist:
          I actually think it's plausible. Look at their response on their review. It is naming someone in reviews that are potentially unrelated in slew of unprofessional claims.

        • +1

          @tshow:

          Threatening someone is definitely plausible, but look at the way it's written. "If you do X I will do Y, but if you do X I will do Z"

          Doesn't make a lot of sense to me.

          Also sounds like the OP bought the wrong phone case. Maybe bought the cover for the non edge model instead of the edge model. How many times have you bought a phone case for your specific phone model, and it doesn't fit your phone?

        • @Cubist:
          The specifics may have been embellished as is with most dramatic events but even the smallest threat of physical violence like, "I don't like conflict so don't make me do what I don't like", is a serious problem.

        • @tshow:

          Or it might not have happened at all. I can't really take an anecdote seriously if it's full of shit to begin with.

          I agree 100% that any physical threat should be taken seriously. I'd personally report it to the police.

      • +1

        Sadly seems to be the majority on OzBargin

  • +6

    Dr Boom are a store to avoid for sure. Recently I saw a facebook post from one of my friend's friend about how he gave his GF iphone to dr boom Parramatta for screen replacement and they got him to give the phone passcode and later on he found one of the store workers looking through his GF pics on the phone while walking around Parra mall. Can't find the post on facebook anymore but there was multiple people commenting with their own ad experience from the same store

  • +1

    Should have downloaded this.

    https://www.ozbargain.com.au/node/365888

    • +14

      Not just faulty according to the consumer guarantee:

      Since 1 January 2011, the following consumer guarantees on products and services apply.

      Products must be of acceptable quality, that is:

      • safe, lasting, with no faults
      • look acceptable
      • do all the things someone would normally expect them to do
      • Acceptable quality takes into account what would normally be expected for the type of product and cost.

      Products must also:

      • match descriptions made by the salesperson, on packaging and labels, and in promotions or advertising
      • match any demonstration model or sample you asked for
      • be fit for the purpose the business told you it would be fit for and for any purpose that you made known to the business before purchasing
      • come with full title and ownership
      • not carry any hidden debts or extra charges
      • come with undisturbed possession, so no one has a right to take the goods away or prevent you from using them
      • meet any extra promises made about performance, condition and quality, such as life time guarantees and money back offers
      • have spare parts and repair facilities available for a reasonable time after purchase unless you were told otherwise.

      Source: ACCC

      If the packaging states that it correctly fits OP's phone and especially if the staff in store told OP that the case was suitable, then the concerns are valid and consumer guarantee should apply.

      it wasn’t a good fit for my phone

      It is reasonable to expect a $100 phone case will correctly fit the phone it is designed for

      the edges where inaccessible

      It is reasonable to expect that a phone case does not impede the normal operation of the phone it is designed for

      and it felt wobbly inside the case

      It is reasonable to expect a $100 phone case will correctly fit and protect the phone it is designed for

      • +5

        Hurray for someone who quotes the law rather than quoting what you think it might be.

      • +2

        Thanks for the reply. I was just making a blanket statement to counter op's suggestions that ACL grants 90 day returns: it sounded like he was claiming that as for change of mind, which is false.

        Of course, if an item is faulty or not as described, non functional or of poor quality, like OP describes, he should be getting what he wants without the harassment. One would certainly expect a phone case, expensive or not, to actually fit the device they claim to be made for.

        I wasn't denying the OP had rights but it sounded like he'd approached staff asking for a return based on change of mind rather than his item but being fit for purpose.

      • and bugger all enforcement

      • not condoning what the store did was ok to treat you in this manner but if its a minor problem with the item then the business can choose to replace or refund. unless its a major fault in which you have the right to ask for a refund.

        so them asking to send it for a replacement doesnt sound all that unreasonable. if you got the case back after a replacement and it still doesnt fit then yeah, you could get a refund.

        https://www.accc.gov.au/consumers/consumer-rights-guarantees...

        If you have a minor problem with a product or service, the business can choose to give you a free repair instead of a replacement or refund. When you have a major problem with a product, you have the right to ask for your choice of a replacement or refund.

      • Applying the facts to the law. R u a lawyer?

      • The case fits. OP subjectivity doesn’t like the fit.

        Anyway someone has already provided the correct information that LifeProof have released a gen2 case for this phone to improve fit based on customer feedback and will send an exchange next business day free off charge.

        Tell the Supreme Court of Australia and ACCC they can stand down.

  • +5

    to be honest, kick the store to the kerb.. don't even deal with them

    deal directly with lifeproof. they have been super helpful for any issue ive had.
    mainly the little notch that holds the charging port cover in keeps breaking, they keep sending me a new case from the US, no issues. only issue is that this is a recurring fault. im up to my 6th case, but they keep sending them…

    I once asked how to replace the headphone jack cable, they just sent me one straight out,

    TLDR - Just deal with lifeproof direct. Theyre awesome.

    • I had a Lifeproof Fre for my S4 worth $80 couple years ago - in terms of protection and water proofing it was unsurpassed (took it snorkeling a couple times and got some cool underwater videos)

      However a minor design flaw in that callers couldn't hear a word you were saying if you didnt use headphone and mic, plus it was impossible to open the case without cracking it (making it no longer waterproof) lead me to stop using it. Dick Smith replaced it twice before I gave up.

      I now only buy Xiaomi phones worth not much more $150 to bypass the entire issue

  • Lifeproof, it says a lot in its name

  • +4

    I had a cracked iPad Mini fixed by DrBoom in Wynyard, and within a few weeks it fell on soft kitchen floor, just to crack straight away. The replacement screen was thin, far too thin. I went to the shop, but they would not give me any kind of discount. I went to another repair centre, and their screen was much much better. Don't like Mr. Boom. Plenty of bad reviews anyway.

  • +11

    IMPORTANT!
    I have a Samsung S8+ and bought a lifeproof case. The original design of the case is Terrible. BUT they have redesigned it! It fits perfectly now and there is no 'trampolining' on the corners of the case, they made it completely flush. Unfortunately retailers are still palming off old stock of the S8 cases.
    Now if you contact lifeproof and let them know and show your proof of purchase, they will send you a new case within a few days. They have really good customer service. They have sent me 2 cases so far (the first one they sent one of the buttons got stuck as well).

    Give it a go! The redesign of the case is awesome.

  • +1

    make a complaint to the police - they will act on it

    • +1

      Police officer:"I will break your legs if you insist filing a life threat report and give me more works to do".

      • brake your legs

        FTFY, according to OP.

  • +2

    I despise stores like that. Glad I never bought a case from them a while back, now I never will.

    Report to the police, then inform head office.

    They don't have great reviews on Google either. I wouldn't be surprised if they're yet another bricks and mortar store which goes into liquidation due to "market conditions" (which usually means crap service)

  • +2

    Had a look at Google reviews, 2/5 stars.

  • +5

    All the fake reviews on their ProductReview page and the incredibly condescending responses they give to the bad reviews tells you what kind of trash mentality this business has from top to bottom: https://www.productreview.com.au/p/dr-boom-communications.ht.... Go to the Police. Seriously.

    • wow I am looking through their product review page and the amount of fake reviews (literally 500+ in 2017 (almost one a day). Cannot believe Product Review don't look into this?

      Its a gold mine

      examples "Tarn was extremely helpful and knew her product. Very great customer service. She was quick with putting the screen protective cover on. I'll be sure to return" joined same day, 1 review

      The service I always get from Jason and Caitlin and the rest of the team at Dr Boom is exceptional. No matter if they are busy or not they always give me the best advice and service. The price is always competitive and at times cheaper.

      awesome service, was served by sue mustaba, prompt reliable service team. Helped to replace my screen 2 times and cover my warranty with no issue, all repairs done at a reasonable price and amazing friendly service, definitely reccomend :)

      Everyone who reviewed joined the same day all with dodgy names and profile images, ProductReview really needs to look into this

      • ^ This x 1000. I have sent so many complaints to them by now that they must be so sick of me.

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