Not such a great consumer experience
My new Kindle arrived yesterday and I very excitedly ripped it out of its recyclable box and turned it on.
Not having any time in the office to actually play with it, I just plugged it in and let it charge up fully.
By the time I got home after a very hectic day of dealing with a mountain of client requests to get done before Christmas I finally had some time to play.
Now when the boy received his Kindle it was pre-registered and he instantly connected up to the wireless network and everything worked.
Mine on the other hand refused, and I mean refused to show any wireless signal.
After an hour of Google Searches and no closer to discovering the problem I finally rang the support line - In the United States.
Well it was a US international number but I dare-say it was downtown bangalore India with the first person I spoke to.
She was very polite and unhelpful really, she didn't understand a work I was saying and kept on telling me to reset the Kindle.
Yeah sure I told her, I had tried that three times already.
When she realised that she couldn't help I was redirected to the actual technical support department. At least this guy spoke better english and helped me download the latest software and download it.
Since this process would take ten minutes and he promised me this was the problem I hung up.
So after waiting ten minutes while the Kindle did it's thing and upgraded the software I tried again.
Still no wireless signal.
So ANOTHER call to the Internal call centre in Bangalore.
Again I had to deal with an operator whose english was probably as good as my Russian, IE non existent.
Then another 15 minute wait for the actual technical support people.
This time we tried changing carriers a few times and still nothing.
So we started the process of having a new Kindle sent, then magically as if someone in the technical support division had just found my Kindle was not actually enabled on their network it started to work.
So after about 30 minutes in total on the phone and a good two hours playing with the thing it finally worked.
I suspect that Amazon have been shipping the damn things without registering them on their network and that was the problem, but who really knows?
It's not a great consumer experience, every single Apple product I have purchased has pretty much worked out of the box and worked seamlessly.
I am a technical person at heart so generally I can do Google searches on something and find the problem but this time there really was a lack of available support online which is very frustrating.
What I did learn about the Kindle is that there are a huge number of hidden diagnostics and setting changes.
For example if you go to the settings menu and just type 311 it will show you all the available wireless carriers and you can select one from the list, or as I was instructed to, try each one to see if one will work.
At the end of the day though I do love the device, I downloaded a book last night and started reading it. The quality of the screen is just fantastic!
It's so easy to read and use.
Sure there is a whole lot of stuff that I have to explore on it, but I will do this in time.
One feature that I hadn't thought about was the fact that it can be used as a usb storage device too, there may only be 1.5 gb on the device but that's enough for some simple file storage and transfer.
One aspect that I don't yet like and I have to do a lot more research on this is the shop on the Kindle, but I suspect it's easier to go to the Amazon Kindle store online and review, purchase books etc.
A small feature I do like is most books offer at least a 1 - 2 chapter sample so you can review the book (kind of) before buying it.
The boy and I are using the same account for both Kindles which means we can share books between us which is useful!
So once I have finished the next few days of intense work I will site down and start relaxing and reading.