Trading in a smartphone is not exactly rocket science, especially at this stage of the game where it has become a fairly common practice. For Samsung
, however, it might as well be. Several customers have reported frustrating experiences in their attempts to trade in a handset for credit towards brand-spanking-new Galaxy S10 model.
For one reason or another, traded in devices are being rejected by Samsung. According to what customers are saying on Twitter and Reddit, these reasons are often bogus. In one instance, a user who sent his Galaxy Note 9
says it was denied the $550 credit he was expecting, with Samsung telling him he sent in a keyboard.
"I decided to take the $550 credit for my Note 9 for the S10, in hopes of living the smaller phone life again. I ignored the horror stories online and did it.... weeks later, I received an email saying that my phone was rejected—and that I wasn't getting any of the $550. I called Samsung, who told me that I sent in a keyboard, not a phone," the user wrote on Reddit
The user also says Samsung had pictures, but that the photos were not of what he sent in.
An isolated incident like this would be one thing, but there are a bunch of other similar complaints of trade ins being rejected. Another user posted a hair-pulling experience on Twitter, saying Samsung rejected his Galaxy Note 8
because it does not boot to the home screen, has not been factory reset, and does not turn on.
"Simple logic tells me that that particular combination isn't possible. Called support and the weren't able to verify their own claims," the user stated on Twitter.
Yet another user posted a chain of events
of what he deemed a "scam" on the part of Samsung. He was attempting to trade in his "pristine" Galaxy S9+, which should have qualified for a $600 credit. The phone was only a couple of months old and kept in a case the entire time, but was told he would only be getting a $50 credit.
His story has somewhat of a happy end, comparatively—he filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau, and five months after his ordeal began, he finally received the remaining $550 in the form of a virtual Visa code.
There are other similar complaints. For whatever reason, Samsung seems to be denying valid trade ins by claiming the devices sent in are different from what they actually are. We are not labeling this as a scam, as one user did, but certainly it appears Samsung is doing a poor job with its trade-in program.
The timing could not be worse, either. Global smartphone sales are down, and so are Samsung's profits
. The Galaxy S10 family could go long way towards turning things around for Samsung, but botching a trade-in program this badly is the sort of thing that could drive away
otherwise loyal customers to the competition.