Monday, December 07, 2009

playstation store poor business practice

So, I recently bought a Sony Playstation 3. Very nice unit with lots of features:
-play games
-watch blurays
-surf the internet
-connect to media servers

Not bad for $300. So tonight, I tried out another feature of the Playstation Store: purchasing a movie. I saw that Terminator Salvation was recently released. Cool! Let's check it out.

This was the first time I used the Playstation Store to buy a movie. I navigated through the menus and saw that the movie was available to rent in HD. Rather than rent it in HD, I wanted to simply buy the movie outright. I navigated down to the movie and purchased the movie. Unfortunately, in the excitement of the purchase, I didn't realize that the movie I purchased was in Standard Definition. Uh oh! What to do?

Can I redownload the movie in High Definition? No.

Can I cancel the order and repurchase the movie in HD? No.
Well, why not? You can rent the movie in HD, but you can't BUY the movie in HD? How stupid is that?!

Since there was no option to cancel the order, I had but one choice. I'm going to have to call the Playstation Store. Ugh.

Calling the Playstation Store (877) 971-7669, I learned from Bruce that there are no refunds on movie purchases even if:
1) it is your first time purchasing a movie
2) you didn't download the movie
3) you simply made a mistake and want to return it for the High Definition version

After talking to Bruce, I needed confirmation from someone in management that this is truly their business practice:
- to not refund you even if you didn't use their product

I got someone named Richard on the line. Richard answered and said he was from "Tech Support." After that introduction, I didn't have much confidence that he'd be very customer friendly. Indeed, Richard laid out the same story as leniency for a first time refund for my $14.99 + $1.05 undownloaded, unwatched movie. This experience just soured me on the whole Playstation 3.

The Playstation Store is about the only store in the whole United States that doesn't allow you to return something you didn't use. Thanks Sony! That's mighty white of you.

Sometimes people just make mistakes. After coming home from a long day, they needn't be penalized if they happen to overlook the letter H for the letter S! And I didn't even use the product! I didn't download it and I didn't watch it. It's like buying some t-shirts, not opening the package and wanting to return them. Should be no problem, right? WRONG! Not for Sony, because even if you DON'T use their product and want to return it, you CAN'T. Shame on Sony's return policy. Shame shame shame!

After this experience, I might just sell the Playstation because it is quite evident that all Sony wants is my money. Since I don't play many games, it will be easy for me to unload this thing and get another device to be the receiver for my audio and video servers. I have no problem with that.

Word to on your return policy for movies. It really sucks.
Feel free to drop me a line or ask me a question.