A comment on the link to my last post on LoopInsight made me remember something I always told customers at the Apple Store when I worked there.

“What you’re getting from Apple is the store and the support system the stores bring with it.”

My episode with Google/Samsung highlights the importance and difficulty of excellent customer service, and just how much of a difference that makes. Had my incident been with an Apple device any time within the first year, I would have been given a replacement device and left the store with a working phone that same day, no excuses, policy BS or arguments. Even AppleCare’s phone support would have shipped me a replacement phone to ensure that I spent as little amount of time without a working phone as possible.

Android phone makers may offer faster phones, or cooler features, but they can’t compete on customer service. You won’t find Apple listing their awards from Consumer Reports every year for the last 12+ years on the spec sheets, but you feel and experience it every time you walk into the store or call AppleCare with a problem.

It’s a new era of computing. Samsung and Google are treating their Customer Service issues like it’s 2003 and my Dell computer won’t boot up. Two weeks without a computer in 2003? Ok, I can manage that. 2 weeks without a phone in 2012? You’ve already screwed up by not recognizing the critical nature of the very device you manufacture/advertise. Even worse, it’s better for Google financially to ensure that I’m constantly using a device and that it’s central to my life.

These are difficult and expensive lessons to learn for any retail organization. Google had better get their act together if they expect to be taken seriously.