An Open Letter to the CEO of Dixons/ PC World/ KnowHow

September 18, 2011 | By Paul Mackenzie Ross | Filed in: business, tech.

[NOTE: John Browett is no longer the CEO of Dixons Group. As of January 2012 it was reported that he joined, of all places, Apple! But then he only lasted until October 2012. Sebastian James is the current CEO of DSG Retail, including PC World]

Dear Mr Browett,

Last year I was looking for a new laptop after my previous notebook, purchased from PC World, had a catastrophic hard drive failure after just 2 years. I decided to go for a much higher spec than the “dead” machine and browsed my local PC World store in Farnborough for a suitable replacement.

Of all the models on display in the store, the majority were pretty average consumer models but I spotted a well-specced Hewlett Packard, noted the model number and walked away to do my homework.

After careful research and consideration I decided to purchase an HP DV7-3110ea  from PC World online. It had all the spec I needed (17″ screen, 4GB RAM, fast quadcore i7 processor etc) and I found a discounted model online, saving me a not unreasonable amount of money.

My laptop turned up at my workplace one day, flimsily strapped to a piece of cardboard by a sheet of plastic in a box otherwise devoid of any padding or packing. I was disappointed at the poor packaging but grateful and lucky that there had been no damage in transit.

For nearly a year I enjoyed the power of this new laptop until the warranty reminder came through. The “3” key had stopped working and there seemed to be a problem with the power pack, so I decided to take advantage of the warranty before it expired.

I returned the laptop to my local branch of PC World on 23 June 2011 and left it for the courier to pick up and deliver to KnowHow so that they could repair my notebook. 10 days was an extremely long time to wait for such simple repair work (about an hour to replace a keyboard) but I decided to have these repairs done under the warranty.

When the notebook was returned to PC World Farnborough in early July, the staff informed me that the screen now had a scratch across it that they couldn’t shift, despite all their attempts. Absolutely livid that it had already taken 10 days and that my notebook had come back with more damage, the store staff very kindly said they’d do everything to rectify the problem. I was fuming but what options did I have? I really needed my laptop back in full working order but PC World/KnowHow had to fix the damage that had happened whilst it was in their possession.

The laptop sat in the store for a day or two before being sent off for yet another 10 days away! Whilst I was deeply disappointed with the “service” I’d received I felt there was no alternative but to have to wait a total of 3 weeks to repair a “3” key and fix the power issue and now the scratched screen.

When the laptop returned to Farnborough for a second time, around the 15th July, I was hugely relieved that my laptop was (hopefully) fully functioning again and back in my possession, despite being without it for 3 weeks! I could now catch up with my work and my life. I returned to my workplace and plugged it in. Everything seemed to function correctly. I was happy.

An hour after plugging in the laptop I went to use it and was given a warning message that there wasn’t enough battery life left to execute the task I was attempting. I checked the power input and there was no charging indicator light on. I unplugged then plugged in the power pack. Still no light.

Absolutely fuming at this I instantly called KnowHow to express my utter fury at the piss poor service. I was told to write a letter detailing the issues of my complaint and that I would have to arrange to send the laptop away again!

I said I’d consider my response.

Since the HP laptop first went away on the 23rd June I started to fall behind in all my employer’s work and my personal work, I fell behind on keeping an eye on my accounts (with my accounting software being installed on my HP laptop). I’d even purchased a replacement HDD for the defunct Compaq laptop in order to try and compensate for the downtime. Whilst helpful, the backup laptop hasn’t been able to deliver the performance nor spec I need in order to catch up with my workload.

The HP DV7-3110ea went home and was plugged back in. The power was intermittent and the issue seemed to now be from the power input port itself, which was OK before the laptop went away for repair. Had the AC in port disconnected from the motherboard when it went in to Knowhow? How did they miss this? Was the laptop checked or inspected to be in full working order before it was returned to me?

The laptop, a portable device that I took everywhere with me, now sits on a desktop in the spare room of my house. I dare not move it in case the power fails completely because I try and squeeze work out of it when I am at home. I cannot use it at work. The email client on my spare Compaq mysteriously crashed and lost 2 months of emails and now won’t connect to the internet at home. I’m trying desperately to catch up with my workload and I have to juggle this between my workplace and my HP  DV7-3110ea which is stuck at home. That’s why, two months after getting the  DV7-3110ea  back, I’m still so behind and so stressed out that I haven’t been able to write a letter of complaint about “KnowHow” and the utterly appalling failure of PC World/Dixons to give me any swift or satisfactory level of customer service.

So, as you can see, it’s been a torrid time. Nearly 3 months after first handing my laptop back for repair it still isn’t fixed. I can’t move it. I’m stuck catching up with my personal work at home and stuck in a particular room. My backup laptop is almost useless as I don’t have the time nor money to fix it so that it can connect to the internet again so I am unable to use any of my laptops remotely.

Consider this then as my complaint – I am still behind in my work and my life, being behind with my accounts cost me bank charges after going overdrawn and I had to spend time fighting to have the extortionate charges dropped. I am still stressed out, absolutely furious with KnowHow/ PC World/ Dixons Group and stuck with a half broken laptop that I don’t know when it will be fixed and how long I can go without again. It’s inconvenient, the customer service has been shoddy and the processes in place at the aforementioned organisations are in serious need of a shakeup. I’ve used PC World since buying my first PC in 1997 an, despite having had previous experiences of incompetent staff and sloppy procedures, have continued to use PC World.

I am now considering whether I should ever spend any money with PC World again but, with this lengthy complaint now in your hands, would like to know what PC World/ KnowHow/ Dixons Retail are going to do next to ensure that this epic failure comes to a satisfactory conclusion, not just for me, here, now, but for all current and future customers of your business. I’ve posted my thoughts and experiences in my blog about how awful the “service” has been with this particular laptop but I am equally happy to shout about any efforts to genuinely and actively improve the service to myself and others and to find a solution to this issue.

All I want now, as a paying customer, is for a happy outcome for this episode. I hope you can make it so.

Kindest Regards


Paul Mackenzie Ross

This is the 3rd installment of this catalogue of epic failure by KnowHow/ PC World/ Dixons Retail. For previous episodes see 1:
You Never Know How Much You Appreciate Your Tech Until It’s Gone and 2: The PC World Update.

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55 comments on “An Open Letter to the CEO of Dixons/ PC World/ KnowHow

  1. That’s definitely unfortunate. I think first lesson is don’t ever buy HP. I’ve never had good experience with them myself or heard any good from anyone else.

    I think PC World should simply send you a new laptop with an official apology letter (much like you had to write a – useless – complaint letter).

  2. I think you could be right, Nima, I’m very seriously considering going Mac next year. My wife has been an Apple fan for many years and swears by them so I think I’m going to just have to bite the bullet and get a 17″ Mac Book Pro even though the cost is at least twice what I was prepared to pay for a 486.

    How about yourself, Nima, what are you using or what would you recommend?

    As for PC World, they’ve already fired back an email saying somebody will be in touch within 72 hours – I really can’t afford to allow this laptop to go away again for any length of time. I moved all my work to an old Dell laptop that wasn’t up to the job and then to that 2-year old Compaq which also failed, so this will be third time lucky! These people are going to have to work some serious magic to fix this and keep me happy, although my expectations are pretty low I must admit.

    A sincere letter of apology and a fully loaded 17″ Mac Book Pro might help to appease me but I won’t hold my breath…

  3. Im having a similar problem with know how. I sent my ps3 away to get fixed and it arrived back over 2 weeks later. With the same problem still occuring. I dont even belive they opened the machine to see what was wrong with it. (also it came back with white specs on the startup bottons.?)
    I dont know if i have the right to request a new one however i have seen many similar complaints from costumers and do not want to wait another couple weeks in order to solve this fault which i belive is realtively easy to fix .
    What do you think i should do? Im off all next week and was really looking forward to relaxing after just finishing some stressful exams.

  4. I’m actually slowly switching to Linux now. Just buy a solid used PC and put Ubuntu on it. You can even have dual boot to use windows every now and then.

  5. Having bought an I-Pad for my husband, which speedily indicated a known fault, and having experienced PC World’s apology for service and (apparently famous c.f. Wikipedia)attemts to wriggle out of their responsibilities under the Sale of Goods Act, I am determined never to have anything to do with this firm or their associates again.

  6. Sorry to hear that, Helen; after 5 months of zero resolution I’m not surprised at anything from this shower. And they *still* didn’t call me within the 72 hours they promised.

  7. I was sorry to read about your nightmare laptop.

    I too have had mega problems with Hewlett-Packard with a CLJ1600 printer. My emails to Nick Wilson (their CEO) at [email protected] have been ignored, as have the voicemail messages I have left for his PA (Caroline) to ring me back.

    According to a recent newspaper article I read, even if your laptop was out of warranty, The Sale of Goods Act 1979 gives Consumers protection for up to 6 years after purchase, regardless of store or manufacturer warranties. The Act says that when a product is bought it must be of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose and meet its description. Your laptop and my printer do not qualify on any of these bases. Under these circumstances we are both entitled to a no cost repair or a replacement which does not appear to be forthcoming. They may well be succeeding in stonewalling and fobbing us off but I will never buy Hewlett Packard again.

    I would just like to say a very big thank you for publishing details of your problems. It doesn’t resolve your nightmare laptop and my printer from hell problems, but hopefully other people will be warned of our experiences before they make a Hewlett-Packard purchase.

  8. Hi Maria,

    Thank you so much for your fantastic response. I’m so sorry to hear that you’re also experiencing tech and customer service problems with a big company, namely your hassles with HP and their CLJ1600 printer.

    The encouraging thing is that it looks like you’ve got the same attitude as myself with regards to addressing a polite email to the CEO of the offending party; I tried this approach once before when I ordered a Canon digital SLR and lenses from Pixmania back in 2006. My past experience with Pixmania was excellent but this time the camera, ordered in good time to arrive for a photo assignment, still hadn’t turned up. Disgusted that I’d waited over a week for a product that was due within just 2 days, I complained to Pixmania’s customer service team who said that, if I was unhappy with their service, that I should simply reject the delivery of the package.

    Lo and behold, the camera finally arrived at my home well after I’d been expecting it and days after the event for which it had been purchased had been over. I refused to sign for the package and that was the last I heard of the matter.

    Some months later I was checking my annual financial figures and I realised that I hadn’t been reimbursed for the camera and lenses. A few emails later and I’d reached an impasse: It had been “so long” since the incident that the courier company were refusing to provide details of the failed delivery and the seller, Pixmania, were dragging their heels in providing a refund.

    Exasperated at this reluctance to provide a swift and satisfactory service, I turned to the Internet to find the email address of Pixmania’s CEO at the time – Just by cc’ing him in the previously long-drawn-out email complaint process had a “magical” affect – Within 24 hours of the deed being done I had the money returned to me. From what I recall, there was little in compensation apart from, IIRC, a voucher to receive a discount if I stayed loyal to my offenders!

    The ironic thing, Maria, is that Pixmania are now owned by… Yep, Dixons Retail!

    If only more of us took this approach to demanding our rights then we’d have a much fairer system. Better still would be a more open and transparent methodology of consumer protection.

    Thank you also for mentioning the Sale of Goods Act, Maria, a friend had also raised this point in a conversation. Readers would be wise to check out Faulty goods? You’ve still got rights when the guarantee runs out If this were more common knowledge then I’m sure companies wouldn’t get away with shafting consumers like they seem to be doing.

    It’s also funny how I was told, in no uncertain terms, about what I was “entitled too” – KnowHow are so fixated on simply prividing a “solution” to this issue that any ancillary niceties go by the wayside. The latest update is that I’ve been without my laptop for a total of 27 days whilst it’s been away with Knowhow, another 6 months or so whilst it’s been functioning substandardly, and a further 14 days since the last “fix” which was yet another failure by Knowhow.

    I too hope that our experience will be a warning for others, Maria – I’ve already received a direct message on twitter from a guy who said, thanks to the story of my problems with PC World, had refused to spend any money with them and, at a greater cost to himself, had gone elsewhere! How’s that for a small victory?

    Keep at it, Maria, we’ll get there in the end 🙂

  9. Hi Guys
    For all those who have had problems with PC World/Curry’s/Dixon’s.

    1. Contact Customer services although they will more likely just fob you off.

    2. Always contact the Chief Executive.

    3. Leave feedback against the store or company – plenty of online forums and message boards to leave your views.

    4. Contact BBC Watchdog programme and any other consumer programmes – the more complaints the more likely a story will be done and millions of viewers watching.

    5. DO NOT recommend them to your friends or family.

    This company often comes bottom in ‘Which’ reviews

    Hit them where it hurts

  10. Nice one, Timsey, and for people who need to contact the CEO of Dixons, PC World and KnowHow (the same group, the same CEO) his name is John Browett and his email address is [email protected] although he has neither acknowledged nor answered a single one of the five emails that I sent to him.

  11. Just got my pc back from knowhow, with a covering letter, to say it has been fixed, valetted, and tested.
    Guess what?……its still broken!.
    3 weeks without my pc!
    This firm are a joke, i’ll be cancelling with them
    if/when they fix the problem.
    I would say save your money and get repairs done locally by people who care.

  12. I’m really sorry to hear that, Dave. It seems like you’ve had the same issues as myself – You’ve sent it to KnowHow because you’ve assumed, as their name implies, they actually know how to diagnose and repair a laptop and, hey presto, they don’t know how!

    Get your laptop fixed by them Dave but, whatever you do, don’t expect a single thing from PC World/KnowHow other than a promise to (eventually) try and fix it and an insincere apology from them. I’ve had no personal message from the CEO, not one “gesture of goodwill” for all the strife they’ve caused me and they’ve failed to compensate me for the money I spent in driving 100 miles over 3 hours to get back my PC before Xmas.

    You’re absolutely bang on the money there though, Dave, they really don’t seem to care. From now on I’m going to do the same as you and ensure that my money goes into the pockets of a friendly, local computer repair shop.

    Cheers & good luck!

  13. Customer Services Department
    PC World
    DSG Retail Ltd
    Maylands Avenue
    Hemel Hempstead
    HP2 7TG
    5th February 2012

    Know How Reference 800633

    Dear Sir/Madam

    I write in absolutely dismay and bewilderment at the treatment I have received by KnowHow.. I run my own company and am so disgusted with the service I just find it hard to fathom that companies still operate in this manner..
    5 years ago I bought my son a Compaq laptop form PC World for his University Course. I have use Pc world to but all the laptops and desk tops for my company. At one point I had 5 knowhow insurances with the business alone.
    My son finished his degree and masters with a first and now works for the biggest Media Agency in the UK. He currently lives at home and shares the laptop with his mum. We took out KnowHow insurance with it at time of purchase. That’s over 5 years of monthly payments (which I might add equals more than the original value paid for the lap top). The laptop has been great and have always shopped at PC World for its good value, coupled with expert advice.
    The lap top has had a few scrapes and scratched over the years and a slight screen issue, but nothing to warranty any action – it worked fine. Until my wife and I were doing some finances on the kitchen table, and as my very young son got on my wife’s lap he managed to knock her black coffee everywhere paperwork and laptop were soaked, the instant reaction was to grab the lap top and lift it up, in doing some it dropped on the tiled kitchen floor.. after the ensuing panic we cleaned it as best we could and dried it out over night (didn’t want to switch it on whilst wet as thought it might do damage) When we did switch on 24 hours later, it hissed and fizzed and didn’t sound healthy at all, the screen had pixelated (not sure of the official term but was un-viewable with what looked like dark ink behind it?)
    I told my wife not to worry as I was sure we still had ‘KnowHow’ backup we had been paying since inception – I looked at the docs and sure enough we did, accidental damage covered.. phew.
    Made a call to ‘KnowHow’ on about 13/12/11. Explained the situation, was told we were covered and you would repair straight away, and if you didn’t repair in 4 weeks, a credit? Would be sent out for replacement. You would collect laptop on 15/12/11. Brilliant.. that’s why you take out cover – phew! And that’s why we use PC World for everything. Professional Company, Great Service.
    13/12/11 – Received text saying collection on 15/12/11
    14/12/11 – Received a text saying lap top would be delivered back to us on 22/12/11 (before even collected – awesome service)
    15/12/11 – Lap Top collected
    22/12/11 – No laptop re-delivered?
    23/12/11 – Checked tracker online and it said to contact Knowhow. Spoke to a gentleman, very professional who advised me the laptop had been repaired, apologies it hadn’t been delivered, but would be delivered on 31/12/11
    29/12/11 – Text reminder saying lap top would be delivered on 31/12/11
    30/12/11 – Text reminder saying lap top would be delivered on 31/12/11
    31/12/11 – No Delivery or phone calls..
    Didn’t hear anything, got on with the new year and running my company.
    26/1/12 – Voicemail left on my mobile from ‘unknown’ number late in the afternoon. Message was very mumble with no names given.. All I could make out was ‘laptop being returned ‘unrepaired’.. no number left or name – very very unprofessional.
    Got home and rang main ‘KnowHow’ number – got through to a young lady called Kiran Kaur. Explained the whole situation.. several texts saying laptop had been repaired and was being delivered, phone call and spoke to a gentleman saying it would be repaired and delivered back by 31/12/11 etc etc.. Kiran wasn’t really interested. I was told the lap top was NOT being repaired and being sent back to me in two days time. I would then need to write to a special department explaining how the damage was caused.. I asked what the point of that was when I had already done this at the beginning, and the details of the mishap had not changed. I was told if send a long letter and explanation to the special dept, they might repair it. So why send it back I asked.. it will then just be double courier costs for you? By now I was not happy and told Kiran this and asked to speak to a member of the management team to explain why I had been verbally and digitally told it was coming back repaired by ‘KnowHow’, and now after 6.5 weeks I was hearing totally different information (even your terms state if not repaired in 4 weeks a credit will be issued) Kiran said a manager would only tell me the same to write it and the lap top would be delivered back to me unrepaired in 2 days and there was nothing I could do about it. I reiterated how unprofessional I found it all and wanted to speak to a member of management. I was told no one would speak to me. I explained that if one of my customers was that unhappy, they never get blocked and always get through to me, its basic customer service good practice. Very frustrated Kiran told me to wait there. I was put on hold, no music or messages, just silence… After 6 minutes holding in silence with no word from anyone, the line went dead. To say I was disillusioned and angry is an understatement – I was furious at the inability of your staff, the conflicting information and the unprofessional manner in which the whole thing was being handled.
    2 days later no lap top back..
    3 days later no lap top back..
    6,7,8,9,10 days later no lap top back??

    I have never in all my years dealt with such a comedy. After 10 years of loyal service and business to PC World, and 5 years of monthly payments this is what I am dealt – If I treated my customers half as bad as this I would have NONE left..

    I am so disgusted, the only way I could lower my blood pressure was to write it down on paper and send it to you. This whole experience has wiped ten years of good patronage and loyalty. As you well know this sort of incident just devalues your brand that I know you have worked so hard to gain.. Some of my family members worked at your HQ.
    I know if anyone senior reads this they will not be happy. I hope you look at this scenario I make the necessary changes to ensure none of your customers go through this ever again. There are some cheap and short termed companies out there that use any excuse not fulfil claims. Knowing the Dixons Group, surely to god, you’re not at this cheap level.

    Please rectify this situation and restore my good faith. I await your swift reply and resolution.

    Yours Sincerely

    Jason Howard

  14. hi there im hoping that you can give me some advice as i am also suffering at the hands of the lovely knowhow idiots. the fact that they call themselves knowhow is laughable enough my problem is with a tv not a laptop but i have the same problem as the rest of you in the fact that they sent the tv back with a letter attached saying it had ben fixed inspected and given a vallet, the prob was still there when we rung the admitted on the phone that they hadnt even touched it just turned it on for 8 hrs am i the only person who see this letter as fraudulent there stating they have done something they havern’t i have been paying for my cover plan for 4 years a total of £340 if i took my car to the garage and paid for a service and it wasnt done i would be able to take action against them so why when i complain i get told by some stuck up customer services manager that i can have £20 voucher and thats it what the hell is going on with this company they need to be stopped!!!

  15. Hi Gemma,

    Oh no, not another dissatisfied customer of PC World/KnowHow!

    I’m really sorry to hear that you’re also having problems with them and for a TV too! Yeah, I know – KnowHow – If it wasn’t so frustrating it would be funny.

    Wow, they admitted they didn’t touch the TV despite returning it saying it was “fixed”… THAT is yet another appalling ballsup of theirs.

    Paying for the cover seems to be a bit of con on their side – As far as I’m aware, under the Sale of Goods Act, electrical or electronic appliances are covered for 5 years so these deals are really not necessary as far as I’m concerned.

    I’m not sure that I can offer any advice, Gemma, but I’m seriously considering talking to Trading Standards or investigating some legal routes…

    Leave that with me and I’ll see if I can find out anything else, and if you’ve not heard anything back as quick as you’d like just post here and I’ll hear you 🙂

  16. Hi all,

    I am just about to fire off an email to PC World as the Don’tKnowHow team don’t know what is going on. A shortened version below and the letter follows (let me know if you think I need to ‘tweek’ the letter before I send it).

    Please let me know who you think I should send it to – can’t seemt find this via a web search.

    April 2011 I bought a business HP laptop which I would use for my business daily. In January 2012 the screen started to play up, flickering and going white. So I returned it to KnowHow on 2nd February 2012. I stressed that it was needed for my business but they still said it would take 14 days to repair. I rang PC World Ipswich in 13th February as I had heard nothing from them. I was told that KnowHow had a problem with my repair and needed to talk to me. Why didn’t they see fit to ring me? How long were they prepared to wait? The ‘problem’ with my repair was that PC World Ipswich had sent KnowHow someone else’s laptop with my repair notes!! And that my laptop (still at PC World Ipswich) would not be sent away for repair until the incorrect laptop was returned to the Ipswich store! So it’s now over three weeks since I booked my laptop in with KnowHow and I have not had any comunications from PC World Ipsiwch since I rang them last.

    What should be my next move?

    Below is a copy of the email I am getting ready to send….

    I booked in my laptop with KnowHow that I bought from your Ipswich PC Store in April 2011 as it had developed a fault with the screen (flickering/going white) on 2nd February 2012 and was told that the repair could take up to 14 days to complete. I stressed at the time that it was a business laptop used daily for my business. I was told by Karl that he/KnowHow would be in touch with me to keep me updated with the repair progress. As I had heard nothing by the 13th of February I rang the Ipswich store to enquire about the repair. I was told that KnowHow has a problem and wanted to speak to me. So why they or the store had not bothered to ring and inform me is beyond me, how long would they have waited if I had not called? This I find to be very unsatisfactory communication on your part. And it gets better, I was told that ‘problem’ was that the repair note number and the laptop number did not match and that the Ipswich store had sent someone else’s laptop with my repair notes. Why did they not put 2 and 2 together and return the wrong laptop and get on with my repaire? What is going on here?

    Also I was told that my laptop WOULD NOT be sent for repair until the incorrect laptop was returned to the Ipswich store! More wasted time!

    To date (23rd February – THREE weeks since I brought my laptop in) I have heard nothing, do I have to do it myself and ring you again? All this on a machine I NEED for my business, this is so poor service you could not make it up. Is this the standard of service that you wish your customers to receive? If so, there is no way I will ever purchase anything from your stores ever again and will make it my business to tell all my contacts to avoid your stores at all costs. I have never ever had such shoddy poor service from a major store as yours. Maybe I need to get a blog set up to voice my frustrations to all that I can? I wonder what replies I would get? More of the same I bet.

    I would really like someone to contact me asap and let me know what the status of the repair is. It is getting on for four weeks now and I will have to rent a laptop to continue my business if I don’t get mine back. I would never treat my customers as you have seen fit to treat me, not if I want to keep them as my customers.

    I await you reply with interest.

    Yours sincerely

  17. Why do you say that, Salty? I never received a non-delivery status message, so, at the time, that email address was valid. What’s the correct email address then, and if you have it would you be able to share it with us?

  18. Wow, yet another PC world/KnowHow cockup! Looks like you’ll be sans laptop for over a month! Fire that email off and include your phone number again so that they can call you. Expect a stonyfaced “customer service rep to call and just hang in there… All I can say is never use them again, they’re utterly useless :-/

  19. Ye gods, it’s true…

    What I find utterly laughable about that story is this…

    …he’s made a good stab at repairing the chain’s reputation for shoddy customer service…

    In my experience, and that of so many others, PC World *still* has a reputation for shoddy service, the comments here are testament to that. How Apple CEO Tim Cook can be “thrilled” at getting John Browett onboard is baffling – Cook’s obviously unaware of the total sh1tstorm that was covered on BBC Watchdog and is still unravelling in the comments here.

    As for John Browett, good luck to him and what can possibly go wrong? PC World/KnowHow is a finely marketed business but underneath the polished exterior it stinks to high heaven. Apple seems to be polished in all areas, so he’s probably going to do very well for himself.

    In terms of Browett saying he’s not in it for the money, it’s interesting how he can jump ship at Dixons, collect a cool million for keeping the sales figures out of choppy water and still leave so many customers absolutely livid at their mistreatment… The money has obviously been useful to help him keep a clear conscience.

  20. Below is the letter i’ve sent to their CEO for a TV repair…. i think i’ve tried to be a polite as possible, but the reality is i’m fuming at this service

    Hello Mr Browett

    I apologise for the direct approach but i feel I’ve exhausted my avenues of pursuing this complaint within your organisation and have no where left to turn.
    I do not really expect you to be able to do anything in my personal case but feel that i need some way of making this feedback known to your group. If for no other reason than to see it improve, in today’s challenging marketplace the only way to really succeed if you’re not an on-line mega shop is to differentiate yourself in some way from the competition. I think that should be in quality customer service, to make people want to come to your shops and business’s when they need a product. Instead of dreading doing business with your group as i now feel.

    Early this year I purchased a TV from your Currys website which went faulty about 1 and a half months later. I need to stress at this point i in no way hold your company at fault for this as i understand that things do go faulty from time to time. I’m also aware i did not have your premium insurance services and so i shouldn’t expect premium service. This however, does not excuse the events that proceeded to transpire with various parts of your organisation.

    Sequence of events (i’ll try to be as brief as possible) –

    TV goes faulty and i report it on 20/02. I was given a date for collection 8 days away on the 28/02 from your Know-how organisation. At this point i understand without the premium service i would have to wait so that’s OK
    I was promised it would be returned on 06/03. Again pretty much what i expected.
    on 05/03 I was informed that you were still awaiting parts and so it would be delayed but no idea of any new time-scales. Technically a breach of a commitment, but I’m not unreasonable and know these things can happen so i wait. I also learned from your know how call centre that an extensive list of parts needed ordered including a new screen which i understand may not be something you immediately keep in stock. I do talk to another agent in the call centre and query the policy of ‘repair or replace’. I’m informed you won’t replace it until 28 days have elapsed, i check the terms and conditions on the Knowhow website and find this to be true and so i don’t escalate it any further.
    Later that week I’m informed the TV is repaired and i will get it back on 13/03. This should have been the end of the story. If it was i would have been championing your organisation as having efficient after sales support at even the most basic level. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case.
    on 13/03 my TV is returned. I was shocked to discover that it hadn’t been properly packaged – when i sent the tv for repair i had packaged it in it’s original packaging to ensure safe transit. On return I found the various component parts of the television hadn’t been protected in any way in the box and so were no doubt bouncing off each other in transit. This meant despite the extensive repairs already carried out the TV now found it’s self with a damaged screen, frame, stand and housing. This rendered the previous repair a complete waste of time and money and showed a complete lack of care for your customers property. This was what frustrated me the most, your organisation effectively damaged my property and would not go out of it’s way to do anything about it other than follow it’s standard policy, surely when you have made an error it can be escalated in some way?…..
    I now start the sequence again, i call Know how again. Initially i was told there’s no way it could be damaged as it wouldn’t get through the ‘quality control’ phase. Fortunately, this barrier quickly melted away when challenged. I was given yet another pick up date of 20/03. and then at least another 7 days after that for the item to be returned.
    Sure enough the day before i was meant to get my tv back (26/03) i got a call stating you were still waiting on parts and it would be delayed again. I was this time told it was the ‘back casing’.
    After this call it occurred to me the back casing was dented when i sent the tv to you and the person on the phone implied everything else was repaired. The back casing isn’t seen and doesn’t affect use so i called back and asked for this to be confirmed. After all, if it was just that remaining i would accept the TV provided the screen and frame were repaired. This time i spoke to a guy who said on his computer that seemed to be the case but he needed to talk to the workshop. After being on hold for a minutes he stated he couldn’t get through but he would email them and would be back in touch within 24 hours.
    24 hours elapsed and i received no call. If keeping count that’s the 3 broken commitments i had been given and this one has even less excuse.
    Now at this point I’ve lost all patience. I call back on , repeat my previous query. This time i’m told i had been misinformed as there is actually still a fairly extensive list of parts that your awaiting including a new screen. (so i was misled and a call back promise broken?). At this stage it has now been over the 28 days one of the earlier agents had mentioned and so i query this on the phone. The lady i was speaking to confirmed that i was now entitled to a replacement but i would need to go into a local currys store and give them my customer reference number. I accepted this.
    The following day i get a text saying my original TV will be returned on 27/03. However, as i had confirmation from 2 knowhow agents that once 28 days had elapsed i could get a replacement (which i could pick up sooner than the redelivery date) and the general bad experience i was having i decided this was the approach i would take.
    Today (01/04) i go into my local Currys story (Berryden in Aberdeen). I approach the counter and give my story and reference number. After a few confused looks from some of the staff and quite a bit of time trying to locate my details the manager comes over. He frankly seemed bemused and looked to be avoiding any responsibility. He directed his staff to call knowhow and get the details. What proceeded was utterly shocking, confusion rained and in front of me (and other customers in the store) your member of staff argued with various Knowhow people over the phone (at one point getting cut off). In what can only be described as a ‘buck passing’ affair where no one in currys or Knowhow wanted to take responsibility. Eventually her call ended and she declared that I had no right to ask for a replacement and there was no point at which i could ask for a replacement. I reminded her of the Terms & conditions on the website and the commitments made by the 2 know how agents i spoke to. She maintained this was for a different product – although i could see no difference, i admit she may be right, but if that’s the case your terms and conditions are very misleading and it still doesn’t explain the 2 know-how call centre advisor’s that said after 28 days i could have a replacement.

    So here i am, almost a month and a half after i reported my tv faulty. Still without my TV, having it’s repair botched once and perfectly functional parts of the television damaged by your organisation. Different bits of your organisation that refuse to deal with each other in a professional way (even in-front of your customers!). Multiple broken promises and commitments. Outright contradictory information being given by your agents and extremely confusing terms and conditions. Who was right? Was it the Know how advisors who said after 28 days i was entitled to a replacement? Or was it the staff in store that said i could in no way request a replacement and that i had misread the terms and conditions. If it was the latter then i stress again how poorly worded your KnowHow terms and conditions are.

    I appreciate your time in reading this complaint/feedback

    Regards a frustrated and disappointed customer

    David Smith

  21. Thank you for stopping by, David, and I’m so sorry to hear yet another bad experience with Knowhow. I didn’t think they could screw up repairing or replacing a TV but from your experience, it’s true!

    What appears to be happening at DSG International, DSG Retail, Dixons Retail, Currys, PC World, KnowHow, or whatever anybody wants to call them is a deep systemic failure. And what is most dismaying is that this John Browett character, who we’ve been emailing and cc’ing in on all the sordid details of our experiences without a single response as he passed the buck to his minions, went to Apple! The worst part of this is that he was apparently head-hunted!

    The reasons for JB’s poaching by the Cupertino techies is even more astonishing:

    “Analysts said Apple’s board was attracted by Browett’s many years of experience in the retail sector and his performance in successfully turning around Dixons’s reputation for poor customer service”

    I’m gobsmacked – “successfully turning around Dixons’s reputation for poor customer service” – That’s a sick joke, right?

    You only have to go back to this alleged tale of a guy returning his iPad2 because his “wife said no” to see the sort of culture at the customer service end of Apple –

    To think that, with the absolute zero amount of customer service we’ve had from Knowhow, Apple tracked down and forcefully employed John Browett?! It makes you wonder what fragrances they sprayed on the corporate bullshit to make Browett come up smelling of roses?!

    The bets are on – How long will the ex-Dixons CEO last at Apple? If he stays a long time then we’ll know for sure that the corporate world is a sick twisted abhorrence of the real world the rest of us live in…

  22. well PC world even screws up their price promise, by giving me the most terrible lie ,, i saw a TV that i wanted and as my current one had “died” I need a new one quick , so did a bit of surfing and saw y PCWORLD had one but at a higher price of another store so i went in and asked for the price promise . The managers had a talk and came back to me stating ” as the one in their shop is GB coded and the oone at the other sore is EU coded , they are not the same and noot gong to do the ” price promise” ” , so I asked them to show me , but they then said it is what they know ,,, not what the product shows . Say what ??? so I argued the point that it was bull, I then get told to contact customer service to confirm ,again ” say what?”. although I know I could argue and get it from them from their “price promise gaurentee” , I refuse to pay them any money . I will however contact CEO and trading standards to complain.

  23. I bet you all gonna mad after looking at this
    17th May 2012
    Customer Services
    The KNOWHOW Team
    Ref: CC0001813245 (Ms Brenda Kilby) and current ref: CC1828957 (Ms Monica)

    Dear Brenda,

    I called yesterday around 1630hrs to check whether I am eligible to get 10% discount according to your previous letter. The first team were very very helpful and the customer services person told me that she will put me through to the sales and then call me back so that I will definitely get the discount. I did not h have my credit card and hence decided to call later as I was working. Even the advisor was helpful for me to place order for product 287098 and 921625.
    Later I called at 1900hrs to place an order, and then I had to go through the process and finally got through to one Ms Jackie at 1915 hrs and explained her whole scenario giving the reference numbers where ever possible. I even mentioned her that I do not want to be in embarrassing situation asking the same discount again and again. She said not to worry and put me through the sales team in Sheffield. The guy who spoke to me made me repeat everything took my order and when I asked him about the total he gave me the actual price without any discount. I mentioned to him that I have spoken to Jackie and the team earlier and they promised me that everything is taken care of. This guy was the worst I could think of. He was telling me that he cannot give any discount and it has to be another team. He was not ready or willing to talk to me. I had to ask him to first listen to me couple of times which he was very much reluctant not to as he wanted to tell me all his side of story. Now after 45 minutes I lost my patience and told him that I am not willing to talk to him and put me through to Jackie which in an abrupt tone he hung up on me.
    Then I called back and spoke to Monika who gave me the ref CC 1828957 and mentioned that she cannot do any more apart from addressing this issue to some other department who were not open and there were no managers who could take my call.
    All I wanted was to place my order and check for discount if applicable rather than going to the store and getting refused.
    All together I wasted 1 hour time of mine over the phone yesterday and now I am very much disappointed how the way you treat your customers. I told Monica, and asked her to tell the manager to call me on Friday 18th May 2012 between 1300 to 14oo hrs as I was working.
    This is getting worst and I am very much disappointed once again with the services of PC World and the team and I do not think anyone should such sort of treatment in near future. I really insist to highlight this issue and my previous issue to the local PRESS and get this article of mine published as other people will know how good PC World offers service. This is not the first time has happened to me and this is second time in a row which is very bad and shows how much you care for your customers.
    I had to literally waste my one hour’s time standing outside the station talking over the phone (which includes my phone bill too).
    I appreciate your reply at the earliest regarding this matter before I hand over my article to the local press along with your letter which you sent me previously.


    18th May 2012

    Now what can I say. Monica did call me as no Managers were available to talk to me and I appreciate her effort to retain customers. All she mentioned now is that you are willing to accept my discount and regarding the compensation which I have asked they will get back to me as to place an order is top priority. I did place an order for the laptop. Later the same evening around 1900hrs Monica called me back and gave me another BIG SHOCK mentioning that PC World has run out of the laptop which I have requested and will offer me another product 284441 at the same price. It was such an embarrassing situation that I could say nothing to her nor did not know whether to curse myself or PCWORLD. I told her to call me back tomorrow as without seeing the product I cannot confirm that order. She mentioned that she felt sorry for my situation and moreover as good will you will be offering me product 284441 instead of 287098 at the price of 329.99 along with my 10 % discount.
    19th May 2012
    As promised Monica did call me and mentioned that she was happy to go through the order and she will put me forward to some other team. As I was really busy at that time and could not place an order over the phone, I mentioned to her that we can do that first thing on Monday morning. Everything went on and she agreed to call me on Monday at 1300hrs to make sure order is placed.

    21st May 2012
    1305 hrs I get a call from Monica mentioning that some other team tried to call me on Sunday at 1157am or whatever as per her records which was really amusing to me as I had the phone with me and no one ever called me. More over I asked her why someone is calling me on Sunday when I specifically told that I will place the order on Monday. She just apologised for miscommunication and gave me another team to reconfirm the order. I told her specifically that I am going to place the order at the agreed price and discount and moreover I wanted the Manager to get back to me regarding my loss of time and phone calls and all inconvienice caused to me.
    Things only got worse when Monica called me in the evening around 1800hrs to tell me that her Managers have decided not to give any discount on the product as they have reduced the product t price. This was the worst moment of life. I felt like screaming at the people on other end who cause me inconvienice and then make me place the order and finally tell me they cannot gave any discount even though I have a letter with me. Wow great customer service PC World. I thanked her for help and specifically told her that I want the Manager to call me back as this is not right. Around 1830 hrs a gentlemen named John Hall called me and I asked him to call me back after 30 minutes as I was still at work.
    TO make things worst he called me around 1930hrs and was not at all willing to listen to me or understand the plight what I am going through. All Mr Hall was concerned is that PC World are making no money from this order of mine and he kept on mentioning that they have given enough discount by reducing the product price. I had to tell him first learn to talk to customers and understand the customer needs first of all as Customer Services Manager and then talk rather than giving the repetitive story from his side. Now for the sake of this order I feel that I have been humiliated to the worst extent by your staff and finally Mr Hall decided to refund back my 10% as per my letter.
    My questions are
    1. What is my mistake?? Is it wrong to call to call PC World Customer Services to check if my discount is available according to the order or not rather than getting humiliated at the store??
    2. Why should the same mistake happen again and again?? Same customer, same issues and the worst customer services.
    3. Did I ask you to reduce the price?? I wanted the product which was available on the 17th to place an order , all I did was called you and wasted my precious time and money over the phone calls
    4. Stress stress stress. Can you teach your team how to deal with people?? Same mistakes, No communication within your relevant Departments.
    5. How long does it take for a Manager to get back even though he gets a written complaint and when the customer calls to check what is happening to his earlier complaint??
    6. Why this fake Marketing and Publicity that you have the stock of products. I think this complaint should be referred to Trading Standards and Media should be made aware of how good you treat your customers.

    Yours Sincerely
    Ranga rajan Tirumala Vinjamoor

  24. Having had a nightmare after ordering a TV from the Dixons website – Yodel lost, then found, then delivered to the wrong address (300 miles from me!) and after hours on the phone to Yodel and Dixons, I was unhappy that the best they could suggest was a refund – it was an expensive item paid for on ny credit card for extra insurance, and three months without the product meant I was paying interest for nothing. I emailed Dixons CEO yesterday. Today I got a phone call offering me a refund + store vouchers + a free TV next day delivery. Don’t stop fighting – I really think the new CEO is trying hard to improve the reputation of their customer services.

  25. Thank you for stopping by, DG, and sorry to hear of another balls up by Dixons and Yodel 🙁

    I might just email the new CEO of Dixons, PC World, just to let him know that nobody bothered to follow up that I’d finally received the correct charger nor reimburse me for spending three hours driving to Southampton and back or the petrol that I used. I still can’t fault the attitude of the staff on the ground but it’s a shame the system as a whole seems to have major flaws in it.

  26. The PCWorld KnowHow service is appalling! I bought the premium warranty expecting to receive value for my money. 10 days after dropping off my laptop (which crashed less than 5 months after I bought it!) they still have not been able to restore the data…. and they have not even delivered the loaner laptop I am supposed to get as part of my warranty! They claim they are low on the stock of loaner laptops. I don’t even know if they will be able to 1) restore the data and 2) fix the problem with the laptop.

    Their reps are useless on the phone, they don’t even know where in the process they are. I am fuming now. Any advice on how to deal with them?

  27. i bought 2 notebook laptop nov 2011, I was sold knowhow premier insurance, they told me anything goes wrong with the machines they would repair it in 8 days, GREAT, one of the notebooks got stood on a couple of weeks ago and sent off for repair, it took 12 days to come back to me, the screen was changed as it was cracked but the frame around the screen had been straightened by hand then sent back to me, I was not happy with the repair as the frame around the screen was still buckled and dented, and it was sent straight back with a request of a right off which was advised by rob pc world staff swansea branch. 10 days have passed and I went to my local pc world store to find out what was happening and i was told they were sending it back to me as it is, as its only cosmetic damage, I was not happy with this as i pay £14 per month on 2 notebooks, the insurance does not cover cosmetic damage, if I was told this when I was sold the insurance that it does not cover this, i would not of taken out the insurance, where do i go from here, i have lost all faith in the insurance and do not want the noteboock back until it is repaired to a satisfactory condition,if i had a crash in my car and it went to a garage i would expect it returned with no damage not just made road worthy as knowhow have told me the cosmetic damage dont effect the running of the notebook,

  28. i bought 2 notebook laptop nov 2011, I was sold knowhow premier insurance, they told me anything goes wrong with the machines they would repair them in 8 days, GREAT, one of the notebooks got stood on a couple of weeks ago and sent off for repair, it took 12 days to come back to me, the screen was changed as it was cracked but the frame around the screen had been straightened by hand then sent back to me, I was not happy with the repair as the frame around the screen was still buckled and dented, and it was sent straight back with a request of a right off which was advised by rob pc world staff at the Swansea store. 10 days have passed and I went to my local pc world store to find out what was happening and i was told they were sending it back to me as it is, as its only cosmetic damage, I was not happy with this as i pay £14 per month on 2 notebooks, the insurance does not cover cosmetic damage, if I was told this when I was sold the insurance that it does not cover this, i would not of taken out the insurance, where do i go from here, i have lost all faith in the insurance and do not want the noteboock back until it is repaired to a satisfactory condition, if i had a crash in my car i would expect it to come back with no dents not just made road worthy, as they say the cosmetic damage dont effect the running of the notebook,

  29. Hi Steve, sorry I approved your post a bit late, I was away on holiday with spotty internet connection, a few days of driving back and then a day of exhausted catching up with sleep!

    Wow, that’s really hard-nosed of PC World/KnowHow to swap a screen but not the cover/bezel – You’d think that they’d just thrown in the cover for free as a gesture of goodwill when the screen costs a hell of a lot more money.

    They toed a similar line with me – The “customer service” manager kept on going on about what I was “entitled” to when I wanted an equivalent laptop whilst they had mine – a piddly little low-powered number which kept wiping its drive every time it was turned off was such a drag that I never used it in the end 🙁

  30. Another KnowHow nightmare here. My daughter bought an HP laptop for her Uni work. After 4 months the screen started flickering and getting white lines all over it….(similar to a previous poster). She sent it away for the usual 10 days got it back in exactly the same state and had to keep it until the Easter break, sent it away again and came back working…however it’s now showing same faults again and they aren’t interested in fixing it or. Helping unless she pays as the warranty ran out a few days ago. Sending a few letters and emails and contacting Which etc too. Any more advice?

  31. i have tried to make a complaint to currys at the store with no joy then on the phone which they did not now what they were doing after two calls lasting nearly two hours which was on my bill I ask for a email address .the first one was No good so I phoned back then they gave me customer care @ again I got a email from dixons saying it was the wrong address. I thought they were the same group .it is like banging your head against the wall.last time I buy anything from dixons group

  32. Congratulations on starting a very interesting thread.
    At least most posters seem to have had periods of trouble-free use.
    I have had a Hewlett-Packard desktop for some five years and I have been pleased with it.
    Not long ago, however, it was hit by crashes, Blue Screen of Death and so on.
    Because I had much used the PC, and aware that computers are continually updated, I decided to buy another.
    I returned to PC World (where I had purchased previous PCs). I paid more than £1,000 for another HP and agreed to “extras”.
    When I returned the next day it was not ready at the time given – another hour predicted – but “things happen”.
    Back home with my new toy I began to set it up. (Instructions are now almost non-existant so heaven knows how novices cope!)
    I progressed quickly until I encountered a two-pin lead that led to nowhere.
    I phoned PC World and spoke to a helpful IT fellow. “Ah! You have a Contental cable. I have a spare UK one on the workbench.”
    I live several miles from the branch and I was not pleased at having to return. I did, of course, collected the cable and returned home.
    All connected the PC bounced into life. With it was a wireless mouse and keyboard. New to me but I removed the batteries’ tabs and checked them.
    The mouse worked. Not well, but it worked. The keyboard did not.
    I phoned PC World and spoke to another staff member. I said I had checked “Devices” and the keyboard was shown as connected. As instructed I pressed and held a connecting button on the back of the keyboard. Dead as the proverbial doornail.
    The solution? Drive all the way back to the store and fetch one from display. Display? After customers had been banging on it? Not happy but….
    At the store counter I waited and waited while a staff member tried to solve a laptop problem for a woman who resembled Nigella Lawson.
    Then a hand reached for my non-working laptop. It was the young man who had sold me the PC. With hardly a word, he strode to the where the desktop PCs were displayed, me following like a dog.
    He picked up the keyboard with a display HP and, holding it rather like a violin, tested it satisfactorily. He took mine and did the same and then pushed the display board into my hands.
    Then, continuing his rudeness, turned to another salesman who, looking anxious, had been standing watching alongside two customers.
    On the long drive home, it dawned on my battered brain that if both keyboards worked it was surely the USB that was at fault.
    I was annoyed with myself for not remarking on that but the salesman (who should have done!) was in a hurry to get rid of me.
    No surprise. The replacement keyboard did not work.
    I phoned PC world and luckily spoke to the first IT fellow who was pleasant and seemed to have more sense than his colleagues.
    I could return the PC although, he reflected, he had installed various programs. So it was phone Customer Service next. Another pleasant chap. Result: a complete mouse/keyboard/usb on the way sometime next week.
    Back on the phone to PC World, I spoke to the helpful fellow again. It was annoying, I said, that I could not connect my “old” keyboard and I needed to get on eBay.
    I could, he said, search for an adaptor at Maplins. When I cannot get on line?
    He did on my behaf and ordered one for me. Their store is in the vicinity of PC World.
    So, yes, for the fourth time, with my petrol guage now on the red section, I made another journey – with unexpected additional expense.
    During the next week, the replacement keyboard arrived special courier. It worked but the keyboard is shoddy. And there is no caps light which can be a setback when typing hidden characters (and I touch type).
    I have replaced it with my far better and more attractive “old” one. The wireless mouse is a misery. (Is “distance” a problem? I am left-handed and the tower is on the floor by the side of a large desk.)
    I intend to buy a wired mouse – but it’s really a poor show in view of the fact that I have had this expensive PC for less than a month.
    In Lidl, I bought a pair of very attractive Silver Crest speakers, black, matching the new PC, with blue LED lights. Under a tenner – compare that with PC World!
    Oh, and I restored my old PC back to the beginning. It’s working well, so come to think of it…..

  33. 8th October bought a Toshiba laptop. Got it home and found it had a scratched screen with fingerprints all over it (NEW?). Took it back the following day and had a replacement for which I checked the screen (obviously). However when I went to set it up I found a residue on the underside. Took this back also and got the run-a-round. Asst Manager implied I had done it. Still communicating with Knowhow after I sent email to several directors asking if they sold second hand units as new. Just dispatched similar email to head honcho at Toshiba asking what he thinks about it. Yes I am pissed off!

  34. I was wondering if someone can help me. I purchased 2 HP laptops from PC world and was rail roaded into buying the insurance which i never wanted. I told the salesman this at PC world , but he insisted that i buy it, so that he could give me a free lap top bag. he told me that I just had to a call when i got home to cancel it. i did this as soon as I got home and I called they tried to convince me to keep it. I told them I was a single parent and had to save hard just to purchase the lap tops and could not afford the insurance. They said they were having a few computer problems but would cancel it.
    I never gave it another thought until today. I went into my savings account to see that they have been taking direct debits payments for insurance for the past 17 months.

    I called them up to have this rectified only to be told, that they have no record of me calling up and it was my responsibility to check my bank account. They will not return my money and said I have to write to customer services. I asked them for managing director address, but was told no they would not give that to me and that I have to write to customer services, but there would be a good chance I will not get my money back.

    Could someone please give me the address of the MD were I can write to them please.

  35. While I have sympathy with all suffering problems with this useless retail operation, I have to say some of these complaint letters defy belief. Why do complainants think that this is your opportunity to let your creative juices flow?! You are supposed to be writing a factual letter of complaint – these diatribes are counter-productive and give the impression of hysteria.

    State the problem. State the desired remedy. As a former retailer I can promise you they are more likely to get results.

    PMR’s daily diary letter or hwood1973’s epic, “2 days later no lap top back.., 3 days later no lap top back..” just make you sound unreasonable and more focused on impressing your readers with creative (and lengthy) letter writing than on obtaining a resultion to the problem.

  36. Update. Eventually after much complaining started by emails to several Directors the offending units were replaced by a Sony unit which looked new but was claimed to be just a showroom model. However whilst setting up and cleaning out the registry it showed that it had been used previously and several games had been installed and then removed. NOTE TO CURRYS, removing software does not remove evidence that it was installed!.

    ukarmani the format for Currys emails is [email protected]. Just find the names of the directors to gain access.

  37. I too have had problems with PC world. Below is a letter I wrote to them, I only got a reply from them today simply stating that they will repair and not replace.

    Do you think this is reasonable

    Correspondence team
    P.O.Box 1686
    S2 5YB
    30 October 2012
    Dear Sir or Madam,
    Complaint about faulty goods
    I bought an HP laptop (product: HewlettPack G61325 E2 RED) on the 18th February 2012 from PC world (4 Clough Road, Hull, North Humberside branch). I paid £350.00 by debit card and also got “whatever happens” pay monthly agreement, which is a form of insurance. On the 5th of March 2012, I took the computer back because the down arrow mechanism had broken and there was a fault with the harddrive, which was confirmed by the in-store engineers. I was given a replacement as the computer was within the 28 days return policy of the store. The replacement was of the same brand and make.
    After 14 days with the second laptop, it developed a harddrive failure with the characteristic blue screen and unresponsiveness. I took the computer back to the same store and a hardddrive fault was confirmed, and a second replacement of the same brand and make was given to me. I inquired whether there had been a fault with that particular batch of computers, as I had purchased the computer on offer, which the store manager denied.
    The third computer worked fine until the 16th October 2012. I returned the computer to the store and because it was outside the 28 days return policy, I was refused a replacement as I was informed that the store had their right to attempt repair before any other course of action. I requested to have tests on the computer to prove that it was of a satisfactory quality and free from defects when I purchased it and that the harddrive problems were not due to normal wear and tear or accidental damage on my part. The deputy manager who said his name was Nick (refused to give surname), assured me that if I sent off the computer to the engineers on 20th October 2012, he would chase up the engineers by the 24th October 2012 and get back to me to discuss whether they had had similar problems with other computers from other customers. The manager failed to do this and each time I called, I spoke to a different manager in store namely Graham (store manager) and Nicky (another store manager) and Peter (business manager), all of which refused to give their surnames and kept giving me different advice and passing me to other members of the team, as well as other members from the knowhow customer services with regards to a replacement. Peter advised me it was within my rights to be given a replacement of similar value as I had experienced the same fault with two other computers prior to the third replacement. He also said as Nick was already dealing with this matter, he would pass on a message for him to ring me as he has been off work at the time of my call. Nick then said that he was not happy to offer me a replacement and that I would need to prove that the computer was defective at the time of purchase but did not suggests ways of how I could do this. Furthermore, he was dismissive and aggressive towards me over the phone and he refused to offer me any sensible advice other than giving back the repaired laptop to me.
    Under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 (as amended), goods you supply must be fit for purpose, be of satisfactory quality and free from defects. If not, the redress available to me is to repair, replace or refund the purchase. I have already accepted two replacements since initial purchase, so I would like a replacement for another brand of the same value. This is because each time I have come back to the store with a problem with the computer, I have lost my data and more than £300 worth of software, which has included medical eBooks and single use licence software such as Microsoft office and Norton security.
    I am a medical student and cannot begin to make you realise the amount of disruption these problems have had on my studies, mental wellbeing as well as the inconvenience of having to leave my studies in order to chase up progress with my case during working hours. I feel I have incurred more losses since the initial purchase namely: two times £30 payment for data recovery and storage, and over £60 of the insurance payment, plus the cost of calling and travel to the PC world store as I have been on placement far away from my Hull campus.
    Finally, I feel that it is within my rights under the Consumer Law to be given a replacement of a similar value. The reason being I do not want to take back the same laptop even after a replacement of the harddrive (which has been proposed), as I feel these problems will escalate and the possibility that the laptop will be out of the manufacturer’s warranty when it happens. Moreover, I do not wish to have to deal with PC world in the future for similar problems, as I have had a terrible experience thus far.
    I have enclosed a copy of the receipt in support of my claim.
    Please respond within 14 days of receiving this letter.
    Yours faithfully,
    Busisiwe Ngwabi

  38. An elderly gentleman of 75 I know well bought a new Toshiba tv from Currys in August 2011 and this November it went faulty.

    As he’d taken out the warranty he thought everything would be sorted out quickly, how wrong he was.

    The conditions on the contract say that the equipment will bee collected witin 3 days of being reported, it took 5.

    2 full weeks later it was returned and the engineer put it back in place and turned it on and guess what it did not work so he took it away again.

    Another week has gone by and they are going to return it after 9 extra days but this time they have found a fault and replaced a circuit board.

    As it has not yet been returned we will have to wait a little longer to see if it works.

    This gentleman has not had any TV for weeks now and all they can say is sorry for the inconvenience.

    I would describe KnowHow as “Don’t KnowHow” and will definitely not recommend them to anyone.

  39. Ive had problems with knowhow also.. i bought a TV from currys and a year later the thing broke… is rang know how who picked it up and sent it away to be fixed… 2 weeks later it was returned fixed but with a scratched case on the front around the screen so i phoned back and got the to take it away a 2nd time..

    a week later i had a letter on the door mat saying ‘get a replacment heres the voucher to go back to currys’… great i thought a new TV! so i went and bought one and stupidly took out the knowhow insurance again.. well 2 years later the new Tv broke.. same problem…

    broke at the beggining of the month and had to wait a week for it to be picked up.. took away and repaired.. brought back sratched again and the plug smashed beyond repair… GREAT!

    so i ring up and have it collected a week later again and am told i will have it back the week after.. they dont have parts and are waiting on them to be deliverd but dont tell me this and have me waiting around all day! when it didnt arrive i rang and thus saying sorry we didnt have the parts.. they are being deliverd to us and will take 10 – 14 days… then i will have to wait for it to be re deilverd…

    i said what about the ‘scratched case’ and they said there was no noted on that from the repair station… i said right so im not going to accept it with the same case unless its replaced also as knowhow damaged it..

    was told well after we hav it for 28 days then you get a free replacement new…

    i said well if the case isnt replaced and its deliverd i will phone and have it taken back again and this really be over 28 days.. i was told i will have to wait… so now im still wihtout a tv a a month later (including the 1st week i had to wait for the initial pick up)

    i know it will have the plug changed but the case wont be replaced so i have had to go all december without a tv.. NOT HAPPY

  40. Having a lot of trouble resolving dispute wiyh PC World Re: damage done to granddaughter’s Samsung netbook after it was collected by courier for transmission to digicare for repair. Might interest you to know Dixon CEO Titter Account is

  41. In my opinion, Knowhow are extremely good at fobbing off unhappy customers with a £20 voucher to spend in-store…as a “good-will gesture”. After 9 months of unacceptably bad customer service since purchasing an expensive but faulty laptop from them as well as many hours of my time wasted chasing up their mistakes I have only received apology after apology for the ‘human errors’ which have caused the problems. Even after admitting that the careplan insurance I had been paying for had gone unnoticed by the repair centre several times they are still determined that the £20 voucher is enough! Two months later I am yet to receive this insignificant £20 voucher and have had to spend another 40 minutes on the phone chasing it up.
    Through my experience, Knowhow have proven themselves to be unprofessional, unable to face responsibility for mistakes, badly organised and have badly trained staff (apart from those in the ‘correspondence team’ who are very well trained at the art of fobbing people off!). I want to make sure that everyone knows about how badly Knowhow have dealt with my complaint and what a waste of money their Careplan can be!

  42. I purchased a washing machine from Currys/Knownothing in November 2012. The washing machine is excellent, however it has developed a fault which Knownothing were unable to fix within the specified time (extended warranty) this took 12 days. I was allowed to choose a new machine which was nice but I still had to pay for the installation and delivery which is not included in the extended warranty (£50.00 extra).
    On the day of delivery two delivery men turned up. Basically said we can’t install the machine you need a plumber! Previous installation of the old machine had gone perfectly (20 minutes max).

    The delivery men were quite animated in front of my children and actually left without saying anything! Naturally this has cost me additional money for a plumber to install the washing machine correctly.

    Customer complaint raised but I will not be holding my breath. The guy at knowhow was apologetic and said I will get my £50.00 back.

    The point is the service is shocking, I paid for a three year warranty when the manufacturer gives two. So for two years I had two warranties and this was certainly not mentioned at the point of purchase.

    Not happy at all.


  43. Having similar problems. No computer so want to write to chief exec. What address and is it Sebastian James please?

    Also agree with comment that we should be as concise as possible despite how mad or disappointed we are with this ridiculous company.

  44. always ask for a managers the minions on the phone don’t care and don’t have any real power to do anything when things go wrong, they want you off the phone asap.
    managers for the technical department
    mick wilson and matt hale “give gestures of good will payments” compensation money like candy.
    never buying a printer from them again.

  45. I took my 2-year PC World faulty computer battle to court last Friday and won. The judgement is for a refund of the full cost of my computer, my court fees and interest since the date of purchase at 8%.
    Just don’t give up.

  46. I am having problems with pc world regarding a pc i bought last june and had problems from square one. The computer just seem to freeze and know how could not do it over the phine. Took to pc world. No news from them. Quick message in three weeks saying whats the password? Will be four weeks in friday and nothing dine. Was told may get credit voucher soon. Not hopeful after reading these messages. I am disabled suffer from depression and this is really getting to me in a bad way. Beyond a joke.

  47. Goodness gracious me, I wish I’d read this two weeks ago.

    I ordered a laptop online from Curry’s PC World on Thursday 18 February. To cut a long story short, the courier DPD lost the parcel. I have tried everything to get my money back. Emails or phone calls every day. I even resorted to complaining on Twitter (which seems to garner the quickest response).

    Two weeks later I am still £330 out of pocket.

    I’ve emailed Sebastian James, I’m not expecting a response.

    Any suggestions? Under the Consumer Rights Act 2015 they should have repaid immediately the contract was broken.

  48. Stuart, if you purchased on line, how did you pay. If through a credit card or paypal. Contact them and submit all your supporting documents. If you are not in breach of consumer law they will claw back your money and refund your account.

  49. Hello. My HP laptop went in for repair. I have paid £10 per month for over 2 years for the KnowHow ‘service’ – never again. Misinformation sent by text and phone…tracking information that, I am told, is wrong. Outright lies told by staff and 45p per minute to call them by mobile. So far my costs for TODAY alone are £22. absolutely disgusting.
    I will write letters…but find Twitter useful in these situation: @knowhowtohelp is the repairs twitter handle…but copy @DCSebJ as that is Sebastian Johnson’s twitter handle. I also added complaints under every post on his Twitter account.

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