Ovi Store Failure, part deux

On the 28th of July, 2009, I made the mistake of purchasing an application (if you must know, it was the JoikuSpot Premium app) from the Ovi Store. My download of the app got interrupted and they made the dumb decision of not having your purchased apps available for re-download. I contacted them to get access and when I sensed that the process was going to be long and painful, I went ahead to purchase the same item from the Joiku Shop. Satisfied that I had fulfilled my craving for the JoikuSpot app (which sadly turned out to not be for me anyway), I decided to request a refund from Nokia/Ovi Store. You can track my posts on the Ovi Store mess through my “Ovi Store Sucks” or “Ovi Store Fail” tags.

Here is the full history of my contact with the Ovi Store:

  1. I communicated with their representatives via email at first when all I wanted was to re-download my application. See my first Ovi Store related post regarding the specifics of that conversation and how that went.
  2. Next, I contacted the Ovi Store via phone at least 3 times and each of those three times, my request for a refund was “escalated” to the Ovi Store Special Response Team. Each of those times I called, I was promised a callback in 24 – 48 hrs and I never received a callback. Each time, I had to initiate a call whereupon their response each time was to escalate the issue to the Ovi Store Special Response Team which is apparently unreachable by phone. I would like to take this opportunity to issue a $25 bounty (payable to whomever wins via Paypal) for anyone who can provide me with a working number for the Ovi Store Special Response Team. This fee will be payable upon my successful communication with the Ovi Store Special Response Team representatives. Note, I’m half-joking, but half-serious. If this transaction is illegal where you are, then you are out of the running. 😀
  3. My last phone communication with the Ovi Store was last week when I called and in a fury, demanded to speak with a real supervisor this time. This supervisor promised yet again that he would personally ensure that the matter was escalated yet again to the special Ovi Store Special Response Team. They actually gave me a number to fax my purchase details to and I absolutely balked at that because:
    1. I don’t have access to a fax machine.
    2. Is Nokia serious about needing everyone who wants a refund to FAX their purchase to a number? How 1990s is that?
    3. Has Nokia heard of identity theft? There is no way in hell I am going to fax my personal details to a number I have no idea about who it belongs to nor am I particularly inclined to trust that the Nokia folk aren’t blowing smoke up my arse.
  4. Of course and just as I had suspected, I still hadn’t received a call from the Ovi Store Special Response Team (OSSRT) and I decided to dispute the transaction with my bank. I made the mistake of using my VISA Debit card to make the purchase, but all is not lost as I took the following precautions:
    1. Allowed the Ovi Store time to resolve the issue. Again, see my first post for specifics.
    2. Have recordings of my conversations with the Ovi Store representatives on all occasions. If you don’t have a call recording application on your phone, I highly recommend you get one. I am currently using Best CallRecorder which I love because I can create rules as to which calls to not record i.e. conversations with my husband, etc. lol. The downside to Best CallRecorder is an annoying beep which, thankfully, doesn’t transfer to the actual recording.
    3. Followed procedures contained in their terms of service (Ovi Store Terms of Service) and followed the instructions I was given each time I spoke with the Ovi Store representatives. To make sure things haven’t changed suddenly, here is my capture of the Ovi Store Terms of Service document as of August 18, 2009 here.
    4. The particular issue that pertains to me are the sections highlighted. If you purchase an item from the Ovi Store, please memories this section (“Cancellations and Refunds”). To save you time, the relevant sections are: “You agree to the electronic delivery of Content being initiated concurrently with the placement of your order. You will not be able to cancel your order once it has been processed, and acknowledge that the nature of the Content is such that it cannot be returned. In the event that after your purchase you discover and promptly inform Nokia that (a) the Content license you have purchased is faulty; (b) the Content Nokia delivers to you does not match the description of the Content you ordered via the Ovi Store; or (c) technical problems delayed or prevented delivery of your Content, your sole and exclusive remedy with respect to such Content will be either replacement of such Content, or refund of the purchase price paid for such Content, as determined by Nokia. Otherwise, no refunds are available. If you encounter any of the above issues, please contact Nokia Customer Support at http://www.ovi.com/services/support/care. In the event Nokia opts to provide you with a refund, Nokia will attempt to process the refund within thirty (30) days. Please note that Nokia may not be able to process your customer support request if you are unable to provide your Transaction ID, which is provided to you by Nokia following your Content license purchase from the Ovi Store; provided you have supplied Nokia with a valid e-mail address at the time of purchase. Nokia may only process refunds for Content where the total price is above the monetary limit stipulated in applicable local legislation.”
    5. Thank heavens I also twittered about my frustrations because that will serve as further proof of the timeline and such.
  5. To cut this long story short, I contacted my bank today to dispute the transaction. I did this in good faith and maybe my bank will be able to get in touch with a person from the *gasp* Ovi Store Special Response Team or OSSRT. </end sarcasm>

Once again, the Ovi Store is a cautionary tale for all who are ga-ga about Nokia’s web store. It is nothing to write home about so do yourself a favor and purchase directly from the developers. I have since received a refund from the Joiku Shop in less than 2 weeks after letting them know that the application was not working as it should on my device. They didn’t ask for stupid stuff like my IMEI number yet again because guess what? They actually use the receipt numbers they issue as a means of tracking!! Who knew that things like receipt/order numbers served a purpose. Nokia would do well to take a leaf from the Joiku Shop’s playbook or hell, Handango’s!! At least, Handango keeps you in the know about the procedures and I got to know the representative! *sigh*

Update on Nokia/Ovi Maps on my Nokia E71x

The visits to my posts about installing Nokia Maps 3.0 on the Nokia E71x phone have been nothing short of amazing! Hopefully, I’ll get some return visitors and we can have a great conversation going on this little blog. I have a couple of comments on the Ovi Maps (.sis file) service and things/quirks I have noticed from my usage. Before all of that, here are some things that might help in getting the best out of Nokia/Ovi Maps on your device:

  1. Make sure you have the latest version of the Nokia PC suite software, Nokia maps updater, and the map uploader software.
  2. If for whatever reason, you can’t get the maps to download via the Map loader software, check out this site which has links that point directly at the maps files on Nokia’s servers here: http://diabo.freehostia.com/symbian/indexmaps.htm As always, caveat emptor when downloading links from external sites posted here. 🙂
  3. Also, you might want to consider uninstalling the Maps Updater and Maps Loader software entirely and re-installing them if you run into issues about the Maps initialization failure, etc. It appears to have worked for the guy in this thread.

On to the rest of the post, if you downloaded the Ovi Maps software hoping for free Drive Navigation, you are wrong as I found out. Now, I don’t blame them as they have to make money somehow. However, you can get drive navigation on your device by purchasing a license from Nokia. Thankfully, the purchasing process is painless i.e. either online or at designated retail locations. For buying the license(s) online (a.k.a. on your device), all you need to do is: (i) Have your credit/debit card ready (ii) Fire up your Nokia maps application and go online if it asks you. (iii) Select “Options” and select “shop & licenses”. It should then automatically update with the latest offerings that Nokia has to offer. (iv) Follow the prompts and tada! I opted to purchase drive navigation and it cost $64.05 including taxes. Be aware that it actually charges your card in foreign currency so you will be hit with transaction charges by your bank. Thankfully, we’re talking about less than $1 with my bank, Wachovia (acquired by) Wells-Fargo so double-check with your bank. I have found the Drive Navigation to be pretty accurate and I actually prefer it to the Garmin XT software I had previously used with my Palm Treo 750 device! As always, configure the options to suit you such as making it take the shortest route (mileage-wise) versus the fastest route which might result in your taking random roads/alleys, etc. 🙂

The second purchase I opted to make was for the City Explorer which is supposed to act like someone giving you directions using landmarks in the city you are in and is tailored for someone who is … walking and not driving. 🙂 I haven’t had a chance to use it much, but I will update this post when I do. The third license I decided to try out was Traffic info and I can honestly say that this doesn’t do much, but tell me when I’m going over the speed limit. I live in an area where traffic congestion is not a huge issue. Thankfully (yet again), the license cost less than $12 for a year of service and I don’t intend to renew. If you have a data plan, it might make sense for you to be constantly updated on live traffic and it also allows re-routing of your trip to avoid traffic jams. If you only get online via WiFi, you will lose out on this useful feature for jampacked areas like San Francisco, etc. Guides is exactly like it sounds, but I’d advise you to only get this is you are sight-seeing in a new town, etc. It’s just another way to get more money out of you. 😀 Lastly, pricing for these items is also available on the <a href=”http://europe.nokia.com/explore-services/maps/prices_and_coverage/pricing-tables-navigable”>Nokia website</a>.

Enjoy!!  If you’ve liked this post, donate to help pay for my hosting needs! My hosting provider is Dreamhost so if I inspire you to start your own blog, let them know I referred you! 😀

Applications for productivity and fun on the Nokia E71x

So, it’s officially been over a month since I took possession of the Nokia E71x phone, which is an ATT-modified version of the Nokia E71 phone. My previous posts have focused on getting rid of the many ATT-branded applications that have littered the phone, some free & paid applications that add to the functionality of the phone and now, I’m talking about applications that are fun to have on the phone for the socially connected person. Phew. Here goes:

1) So far, I’ve spent a good bit of time researching what applications I want on my phone. I knew that I would benefit greatly from an application that would let me make screen recordings on my phone and I found an app for that: the Mobiola Screen Capture software application. It takes screenshots and can take video recordings of whatever is taking place on screen! It’s pretty impressive and if you are inquisitive like I am, you will definitely add this tool to your arsenal.

2) Again, being a blogger, I looked for a way to easily create rich posts for my blogs and I found a very robust freeware application for WordPress.com hosted blogs as well as self-hosted WordPress blog: Wordmobi. The installation is easy-peasy and it works as advertised. As a matter of fact, I’ve penned 1 or 2 posts via this application and while it could do better in terms of its user interface, I’m NOT staring this gift horse in the mouth. 🙂 It works via Wifi which is great if you aren’t signed up for a data plan so it scores major points in my book. 😀

3) I love chatting with my friends and family. I’ve signed up for practically all the top instant messaging services there are so I was looking for applications that would allow me to add, at least, Yahoo Messaging, Windows Live, Gtalk, Skype, etc. I’ve searched high and low for an application to do just that. I didn’t want to spend any more money on applications. Thankfully, there were several freeware alternatives. The top two that come to mind are: fring, Gizmo, and nimbuzz. An important source for the freebie-loving Nokia owner is this website, Freeware for Symbian. I LOVE this website because not only do they tell you about the great applications available for free, they allow YOU to visit the publisher’s website to download the program yourself! This behavior makes them much more trustworthy than a site that offers the downloads from their site. So, I feel confident in recommending them to you, but as always, caveat emptor. My recommendation on the IM applications is to install and try them out. Here’s their section on Messengers. As for me, I’ve got Nimbuzz installed on my phone and PC. It fits my needs and you might come to that conclusion yourself so up and away! 🙂

4) This fourth item is a hidden gem and I wish Nokia would do more to advertise it. Continue reading Applications for productivity and fun on the Nokia E71x