Category Archives: Tech Support and Customer Service

Articles about tech support and customer service, at Ilium Software and beyond.

What’s with the Windows bugs?

Although most of the people who have upgraded to eWallet 7 on Windows PCare having no trouble at all, there are a few folks running into bugs. A few of these bugs are really frustrating and we’re not taking this lightly. We’ve got developers working non-stop on these and we hope to have an update in the near future.

Most of the people who are running into trouble are already working with Kevin, Lee, and myself on getting the issues ironed out but I wanted to just take a minute to explain why you are seeing bugs! Understanding the developer end of things may not make everything better, but it might help give some insight into what is going on.

I’m also going to mention a few of the bugs we’ve seen at the end of this post. One reminder, however…please send us email if you need support. We just can’t do it here in the blog comments!

That said…read on if you want the full story!

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eWallet 7.0 – Updates and Answers

eWallet2I’m in the middle of a major software release right now so I’ll make this quick. I apologize that I can’t respond to all your comments individually, but considering how many of them there are, that simply isn’t possible. So – let’s get started…

Thanks!
First let me say thanks to everyone who posted their support. We really appreciate it and we are working very hard to live up to your expectations. The new release is a pretty big deal and I think you’ll all like it. In fact I think you’ll REALLY like it. So thanks for your kind words and we hope you like eWallet 7.0!

eWallet 7.0 Will Be Out Tuesday
eWallet 7.0 will be out tomorrow morning. This was the planned release date all along and we’re sticking to it.

More after the jump!

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Email problems – all fixed!

Hi everyone – I just wanted to let you know that we discovered a little problem with our email system this morning. First, the good news: the problem is solved now! I’ve been sending test emails from our site, and we’ve received them all.

The bad news is: if you sent an email to us between yesterday evening and earlier this morning, we may not have gotten it. If you didn’t get an auto-response back from your email, that means it didn’t go through.

So, if you sent us an email and you don’t hear from us, please send it again. You can use this form on our site to contact us. Sorry for any inconvenience!

eWallet Sync Troubleshooting

Hey everyone! As I announced, eWallet sync is out and it’s going really well. For most folks it’s a simple process and is working like a charm. Of course as one would expect with the number of folks we have upgrading right now, some people are running into some problems. Fortunately, most of these are pretty easily fixed.

So if you’re one of the folks who are having some trouble, read on. I’ve got some easy fixes, and if you’re still having trouble let us know via our support lines! We’ll get you up and running. Continue reading

R.I.P.: Ilium Software email server

So here we are, fielding hundreds and hundreds of email questions, desktop software requests, and much more, and guess what happens?

The email server dies.

Again.

OK, to be fair it didn’t die on Monday. It just went down for awhile which put us behind on our email responses. Today, however, the thing finally went belly up. Although we didn’t lose any emails

UPDATE: It looks like we COULD have lost some emails if they came in between 12AM ET and 8AM ET. If you think you may have emailed us during that period you might want to resend!

We are working hard to get replies out to everyone in a timely fashion. Fortunately, the trouble on Monday got us moving in the “Get a replacement, STAT!” direction, so recovery won’t be too bad.

The bad part is that email replies will likely be slower than usual, and we’re very sorry about that. We pride ourselves on quick email turn-around, and this is just the sort of thing that makes us crazy. We’re even bringing in a temp to help get things rolling again, so hopefully we’ll get to everyone before the weekend!

In the meantime, if you haven’t heard from us yet, at least you know why. And if it’s an emergency, remember that you can always give us a call!

How low are your expectations?

Last week we had a glitch with our anniversary discount for users wanting to pay with PayPal, and with everything going on, it took us a little while to notice. We were shocked at how many orders this affected, especially when we realized that exactly two people told us about it.

I know that when I run across a problem, especially when ordering something online, I try to at least email someone at the company to let them know. But, then again, by nature I am a “fixer”. (I guess my job in Support is a natural fit, eh?) The results of my contact with companies are pretty much a mixed bag, everything from no response at all, to the occasional automated reply that has nothing to do with my original email, but more often I’ll get a real response from someone who is at least trying to correct the problem.

Overall, do you expect a low level of service or response? Or is it that you feel it’s pointless to complain? We really try to do better than that, and I hope we are succeeding.

Wouldn’t You Like to Know?

thought.jpgNo, seriously, wouldn’t you? I’m talking about finding out when we have iPhone or Blackberry versions of our software available. You don’t need to keep checking our blog every day (although we appreciate the visits, and the enthusiasm!) waiting for an update – we can notify you as soon as we have something ready.

All you need to do is fill out this form to tell us who you are and what you’re waiting for. That’s it! We’ll let you know when we have software available for your device.

So send us your info today, and we’ll be in touch with good news as soon as we have it.

I Love this Article

pcmag.gifSascha Segan, of PC Magazine, wrote a great column called Pay Now or Pay Later. He points out the real costs of buying low-cost electronics, including

“hidden charges, shoddy products, lousy tech support, a poisoned environment, lost U.S. jobs, and starving workers … the loss of things like customer service, reliability, durability, and flexibility”

and says that

“the relentless cost-cutting brought on by a culture where low prices are the ultimate goal has led to the complete demise of tech support, the most labor-intensive part of the tech process and one that’s invisible in advertisements and on shelves.”

Please read it – it’s well worth the time.

“Smart” Systems

smartcomp.jpgPeople are always talking about “smart” systems. These are automated systems that are meant to make a company more efficient, drive sales, and provide a great customer experience. Often, and unfortunately, the implementation of these systems goes hand in hand with cutting back on the role of real people in the process. Time and again, these “smart” systems prove incredibly stupid.

This whole issue is particularly important to us right now, because we’re working on some “smart” systems of our own. Where are they a good thing and where are they a pain? How do you use them in a way that really does make life better rather than more complicated? Read on for my thoughts and a chance to voice your own opinion!

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Support and Sunrocket Alternatives

sunrocket goes belly-up, suggests we try teleblend. who?Like everyone else who used Sunrocket as their VIOP provider, I’m now looking for a replacement service, as they’ve just announced that they’ve stopped their service. And because I went to Sunrocket in the first place because Vonage customer service was so bad, I’m spending a lot of time reading reviews of other VOIP providers.

I like the convenience of having phones all around my house – it’s a small house and I have 6 phones, and still have a hard time finding one when it rings – so going cell-only, while an option, isn’t my first choice. And I briefly worked for our local phone company once, and will do almost anything to never give them any money again. So finding a VIOP provider I don’t mind (I don’t even have to like them, just not find them too objectionable) would be the best option for me.

But reading the comments on the review boards – wow. I may go cell-only just because I don’t want to give money every month to a company that doesn’t treat me decently. It’s why I canceled Vonage in the first place, and is the sole reason I’m not going back to them. I don’t need all that many features (though will admit I enjoy number blocking quite a bit, and would like a less-expensive plan with limited minutes, since I never use many) but I will not knowingly sign up with a company that doesn’t tell me the truth, or whose representatives don’t have the knowledge or authority to fix my problem or even to connect me with someone who does. I just won’t – I don’t want to support that kind of business model if I absolutely don’t have to. I don’t fly Northwest (if I can possibly avoid it) for the same reason – I just don’t want to give money to people who treat me that badly.

So this decision really comes down to support, for me, since I do have the luxury of not getting VOIP or a landline at all, and of taking my time to make up my mind. There are several providers who have the features I want and a decent price, and I’m very willing to put up with the VOIP phoneline quality. But unless I find one where I get more confidence in their support – even though I doubt I’ll need it – I don’t think I’ll be signing up with any of them. (And Sunrocket’s suggestion – Teleblend – is just scary. I’ve never heard of them before; they’re not on any of the review sites; at least 2 of their URLs were registered this week, and there’s very little info about their agreement on their site – just “sign up”. How about “no thank you”!)

Support does matter. And if we buy, or sign up for, the least expensive alternatives based only on price, we’re just incenting companies to provide bad support. And making it harder for people who provide good support to survive.