The Google Pixel 6 hardware is buggy rubbish and the company’s tech support is worse

I would not commonly be composing a ZDNet piece this week as I am on getaway in New Orleans — and making the most of the sights, meals, audio and culture. To photo chronicle my week in the Huge Effortless, I introduced two smartphones with me, my
Apple iphone 13 Professional Max

 and my
new Google Pixel 6

.

Soon after environment up the Pixel 6 a several months back — while the products could continue to be returned — I experienced an concern in which the OS acquired an first around-the-air update and when it rebooted, it arrived up in restoration method, staying not able to browse the file technique — and it forced a manufacturing unit reset. So I had to set up the telephone again from a backup a lot less than a day after the initial set up. I dismissed this preliminary trouble as a initial-day or very first-week glitch for a new solution and ongoing making use of the device.

Also: Goodbye Google Pixel 6 Pro: 9 explanations it truly is not the cellular phone for me

Quite a few weeks have long gone by, and I’m on vacation with the mobile phone, obtaining taken a few hundred photos with it. Google despatched yet another more than-the-air update this 7 days, which I approved. The same thing transpired — the system rebooted, it entered recovery manner, and it pressured a file procedure manufacturing facility reset. The photograph of my screen when this transpired is underneath.

pixel-6-pro-error.jpg

Jason Perlow

Look, perhaps this is just undesirable luck with a cellphone, but experienced I known this was likely to be a issue youngster system, I would have returned it for a total refund and waited a handful of months to get some thing else with Android 12 on it. As much as I am anxious, this should by no means come about with Google’s flagship Android developer unit. I am now out of the product return window, with device alternative as my only official alternative if the company deems it to be defective and this just isn’t a outcome of their software program stack also remaining garbage.

Last night time, close to 8pm EST, the to start with point I experimented with to do was to get hold of Google’s system guidance on its shop website — which is almost certainly the most labyrinthian tech guidance process I have ever noticed for a cellular hardware merchandise. It can be this layered, AI-pushed method that retains suggesting resolutions that the finish-user can do that are thoroughly unrelated to my difficulty and totally avoids placing you in contact with a human becoming. 

You can not get in touch with Google specifically if you have a challenge with your Pixel — you have to make it via that outrageous selection tree to the position exactly where you can request a callback, which following about 15 minutes of typing in “this piece of crap is defective and my file system is hosed”, it lastly allow me do.

When my callback arrived about 30 minutes later, I obtained a computerized attendant which explained to me I desired to wait, and I ultimately got a human. When I defined to her what was likely on, she reported, “Oh, that’s a technical situation I will need to set you in touch with technical aid.”

Appropriate. 

So then she puts me on maintain for 10 minutes. She arrives back again. “They are even now busy I am so sorry. Can I set you on maintain for a couple of much more minutes?” I mentioned sure. This method recurring about 3 situations, but the wait around tunes went darkish on the 3rd attempt, and the link dropped. I experienced no way to phone back again in and get back on the queue.

So what did I do? I went through the selection tree issue all over again on the web page, and right after yet another 10-15 minutes of bungling the responses, I requested a further callback. This resulted in a different connect with back again about 50 percent hour later on. I went on hold yet again, waiting for yet another 1st-amount human, and the relationship dropped yet again.

I tried the determination tree once again, and then it informed me guidance hrs ended up about and to try once more tomorrow. I am now ready for an individual from Google to get in touch with me back again.

img-0124.jpg

Screenshot Jason Perlow

If Google desires to placement the Pixel as the company’s Apple iphone, then it wants to match the products on a lot more than just components and software package options. It demands to increase its shopper support and support infrastructure vastly. Not staying ready to very easily get in touch with a human by cell phone when working with a severe difficulty like this is irritating. If I did not have my Apple iphone with me on this journey, and I was not in a great information coverage place or had accessibility to Wi-Fi, I would have dropped all the facts on my system (which I did) and not be capable to cloud restore it. As it took place, I had my other cellular phone with me as a backup and was in a 5G coverage area with an unrestricted AT&T strategy. But not everybody is going to be so privileged.

By comparison, Apple has substantially better help — not only does it have a far better guidance queue technique, but it also has retail retail outlet areas, whereas Google won’t. Although Apple also employs a final decision tree for distant aid, it truly is about a single simply click absent from a “we will get in touch with you” assist call, and the hold out times are disclosed at about two minutes. I know from knowledge that it is that shorter since my wife had to contact in during the pandemic with an challenge, and they were on the cell phone in no time — and Apple delivered immediate get in touch with quantities to call again for stick to-ups.

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Apple’s aid interface is distinct. 


Screenshot Jason Perlow

Proper now, I have a authentic bitter taste in my mouth from Google. If I could return this buggy and unstable device for a refund now, I would — and in simple fact, I have presently filed a dispute with my credit score card corporation. But at present, I am caught with the machine and hoping the firm will, on its personal, make fantastic on a refund as it was evidently defective for the duration of the first return interval, not just going through a prevalent bug.

UPDATE: The Google Retail outlet has provided to allow me return the products and refund my money as of 1PM EST, Friday November 19. I am not sure if this is one thing that under the situations they would lengthen to any customer struggling the very same concerns just outside the return window, but I recognize the thing to consider.