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Taking Virgin Mobile to small claims court over Galaxy S6 warranty refusal (rooting/flashing)

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Hello TCAG forums,

 

I currently have an ongoing dispute with VM over a Galaxy S6 home button manufacturing issue that has been denied exchange/repair over evidence the phone has been rooted. Most of my case has been documented here - hxxp://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Mobile/Repair-refused-on-days-old-handset-due-to-root-Galaxy-S6/td-p/2918695

 

To summarize for everyone on these forums, the home button was loose on delivery of the phone, but operating okay for the first few days. It then began to stop registering some pushes when the button was pressed on the right hand side. After contacting VM a few days in (within 14 days) I was offered a doorstop exchange. This was cancelled a day later and I was told I had to send for repair. Repair was refused under warranty for evidence of the phone being rooted and I was quoted £200. I refused.

 

I contacted Citizens Advice who advised me to write to them and state the sale of good act and burden of proof. I also enclosed a copy of this article - hxxp://fsfe.org/freesoftware/legal/flashingdevices.en.html I stated it was a physical fault, and not anything caused by software.

 

Today I was contacted and told VM are sticking to their guns and the reason for the exchange being cancelled was they wanted to inspect the phone first to make sure I hadn't misused it, dropping for example. I tried to argue that I shouldn't be held guilty to misuse until proven innocent and that other companies all exchange within 14 days and inspect the handset after exchange.

 

I have now contacted CA again, and know the next step they will advise is raising with the small claims court. I contacted FSFE via email to seek more advice on their article and law as well.

 

Has anyone else experienced issues over flashing an android device with other software? I've had a Nexus phone in the past sent back to Google with no issues, and even read many examples of people sending phones to Samsung under warranty with no issues.

 

Thanks a lot.

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Why dont you send it Samsung directly?

I root all of my devices that I own but UNROOT Them before sending them off.

Is it Samsung who have refused to do anything or VM. Samsung will repair it Guaranteed!

 

Also before you go to court... Email the CEO.

 

 

Before sending it off, youll need to flash stock firmware via Odin...

Shouldnt be too hard :)


 

We could do with some help from you.

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

**Fko-Filee**

Receptaculum Ignis

 

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Why dont you send it Samsung directly?

I root all of my devices that I own but UNROOT Them before sending them off.

Is it Samsung who have refused to do anything or VM. Samsung will repair it Guaranteed!

 

Also before you go to court... Email the CEO.

 

 

 

Before sending it off, youll need to flash stock firmware via Odin...

Shouldnt be too hard :)

 

Hi, thanks for your reply. I went via VM because the handset was days old and I wanted an exchange rather than a repair/refurb. I think by law I'm required to go to the retailer first within 14 days before I approach Samsung. Now it has become a bit of a battle of right and wrong for me. I know I could probably give in to VM and go to Samsung, but I'm hesitant to do that given how far I've battled so far.

 

VM refused to do an exchange, and then it was VM repair technicians who refused to repair. VM said today they spoke to Samsung directly for advice on my warranty, and concluded it is still void.

 

I did return it to stock via Odin, but I think Knox trips so that is the evidence they were using.

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Yes it does, but technically because its hardware, and not software, I believe it shouldnt void it.

Arrange for Sammie to look it over, I think you may be alright :)

 

I like Sammie, theyve done wonderful jobs for me with my repairs, all with KNOX Tripped :)

Otherwise email the execs office :)


 

We could do with some help from you.

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

**Fko-Filee**

Receptaculum Ignis

 

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Yes it does, but technically because its hardware, and not software, I believe it shouldnt void it.

Arrange for Sammie to look it over, I think you may be alright :)

 

I like Sammie, theyve done wonderful jobs for me with my repairs, all with KNOX Tripped :)

Otherwise email the execs office :)

 

All research into the law, and even CA, told me it shouldn't be void in this case. I can understand if they can argue YOU have somehow caused damage via software, but this is a physical button manufactured out of parts, nothing software related.

 

Considering I've written to them I'm not sure how emailing the execs office would help, but thanks, I'll do it anyway.

 

I'm waiting to hear back from CA and FSFE for further advice. At the very least I'll give them a few days. I think it will be interesting to see this case battled out, if only to give further and clearer information on EU law in this digital age.

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The execs office have a lot more Clout when it comes to things... in ANY organisation. Ive had entire clumps of debts written off and issues resolved REALLY Quickly when dealing with companies on the Exec level :)

  • Confused 1

 

We could do with some help from you.

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

**Fko-Filee**

Receptaculum Ignis

 

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The execs office have a lot more Clout when it comes to things... in ANY organisation. Ive had entire clumps of debts written off and issues resolved REALLY Quickly when dealing with companies on the Exec level :)

 

Thanks. I will email today.

 

Funny thing is I work for Virgin Media, and thought I might throw that in to try and argue my case! But I remained professional and acted like a consumer, rather than an angry employee haha. I only work with the home services side anyway, not mobile.

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The execs office have a lot more Clout when it comes to things... in ANY organisation. Ive had entire clumps of debts written off and issues resolved REALLY Quickly when dealing with companies on the Exec level :)

 

Me too.

 

I was having issues with roaming whilst in France recently,. basically nothing worked, the Virgin Forum guys were useless, just telling me to phone..I COULDNT !!.

 

I found a CEO address and they got everything sorted real quick.

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Just to let everyone know, I received a response via the CEO email already and they are going to look into things. Tom wasn't available personally but another member of staff will help. I mentioned this time that I work for Virgin Media for what it will count.

 

Cheers

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Well it might do... Reason being is because Virgin need to make sure their staff have confidence in the brand otherwise... Potential sales opportunities lost...


 

We could do with some help from you.

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

**Fko-Filee**

Receptaculum Ignis

 

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Well it might do... Reason being is because Virgin need to make sure their staff have confidence in the brand otherwise... Potential sales opportunities lost...

 

To be fair I only mentioned in the follow up response when they asked for some details (telephone number/etc). So response to me originally was just as if I were a normal consumer.

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Keep me posted,.

 

Will do! Thanks for the email address, even if I could easily have found it via work :p

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Hey forum, was called from the CEO's office today.

 

The company they use for repairs UTL are claiming that installing 3rd party software is misuse, and the phone is "corrupted". In order for them to install stock software, which I did myself via ODIN, they say the motherboard needs replaced to fix corruption and that is what the £204 charge is for. The home button will conveniently be fixed under warranty within that charge.

 

So the only option they are giving me is to pay.

 

I pressed on what on earth corruption meant, and asked for details about what was wrong with the handset, but I was just told the same. They need to replace the motherboard to install stock Samsung software. We shall see how that claim holds up in court, especially stating misuse and "corruption" of the device.

 

:violin:

 

What could be helpful from these forums is if anyone who has ever had a Samsung phone repaired while rooted/KNOX tripped/flashed could just leave a simple post stating so. Taking evidence of double standards to court should help if I get attacked on the Samsung/Mobile providers have zero tolerance to repairing handsets with evidence of 3rd party software.

Edited by Audioboxer

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I have a a rooted S6 (SM-G920F), which is on 5.1.1, but I did it without tripping the KNOX counter. I always root my phones, and it's the reason I avoid iStuff.

 

Software CAN in certain circumstances cause physical damage, but they would have to show how/why it did.

 

They won't have a leg to stand on if you persue this to court, but they'll never admit it.

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I have a a rooted S6 (SM-G920F), which is on 5.1.1, but I did it without tripping the KNOX counter. I always root my phones, and it's the reason I avoid iStuff.

 

Software CAN in certain circumstances cause physical damage, but they would have to show how/why it did.

 

They won't have a leg to stand on if you persue this to court, but they'll never admit it.

 

Thanks.

 

Yeah I can accept certain circumstances being provable. I only had the phone for a matter of days, it was rooted on STOCK firmware. I didn't even get around to a custom ROM. Done it to remove some bloat. Returned to stock before sending back as well. I'm bulletproof there, the phone operates 100% fine, except from the physical button being knackered. Virgin phones run on the international FW as well, so it's not as if I flashed a 3 branded FW by accident or something (not that that should even matter).

 

I will be going to court, but I also have to contact CISAS. VM state this is part of their formal complaint process, and that the CAB isn't. So I'm filling out my CISAS complaint just now - hxxp://store.virginmedia.com/content/dam/eSales/Downloads/Consumer%20Complaint%20Code%20of%20Practice.pdf

 

I really do think these companies, especially the repair company UTL, rest on laurels that consumers don't know enough about technology and will be scared to back down. I mean using the term "corruption". It's laughable and an attempt at scaring someone. I pressed multiple times for an explanation of corruption. Funnily enough they haven't mentioned KNOX once. Maybe thought I wasn't intelligent enough to know what KNOX is and that saying corruption is the best move :oops:

Edited by Audioboxer

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Go direct to Sammy... Easy :)

 

Theyll fix it :)

 

I know they probably will, but I'm not one to back down when there is injustice. I feel for anyone not as knowledgeable who will end up scared and fork over the £204, especially when the CEO's office get in contact. I told the adviser on the phone I rejected the outcome and that was pretty much okay bye. He should have referred me directly to CISAS as per the VM complaints process, and he didn't.

 

I really want to see UTL explain "corruption" to a court. As I just posted on the VM forums - http://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Mobile/Repair-refused-on-days-old-handset-due-to-root-Galaxy-S6/m-p/2939054#M47983 I have not been and am not going to argue my knowledge of Android with advisers. If UTL/VM want to present "corruption" as fact I will roll with that to claims.

 

It's pretty much a ransom. Pay us £204 to replace the motherboard and we will fix the home button under warranty. They could get away with not even touching the motherboard and technically as a consumer I would know none the better! (opening my handset would be misuse and void warranty). There are discussions that KNOX is an efuse, but on XDA there's speculation that KNOX can be reset on the S6 by Samsung without changing any internals. Either way at the end of the day KNOX is something Samsung destroy on your phone by their choice, it's not something you choose to destroy due to legal use of software on your handset (yes I know technicalities of saying you choose to flash, but Samsung setup the KNOX switch by their own choosing, it is not law for them to do so, or mandated by Google, and neither does it stop stock software from working/being flashed).

Edited by Audioboxer

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An update from the CAB

 

Dear Mr,

 

Thank you for your e mail about case reference number

 

Thanks for updating us about your problem. I understand that you have attempted to resolve the issue with the trader but they still state that the warranty has been voided.

 

Your next steps

As you have written to the trader who has been unwilling to assist in resolving this issue, you may now have to escalate this through a trade organisation or through an alternative dispute resolution scheme. These steps will be the last steps available before taking the matter to small claims court.

 

The alternative dispute resolution scheme for communication provider is Communication and Internet Services Adjudication Scheme (CISAS) for information on the service they provide click here.

 

You may also wish to contact the Office of Communications (Ofcom) who are the independent regulator for UK communication industries. You can visit their website by clicking here.

 

What we’ll do

We can also look at this stage to refer you details to your local Trading Standards for them to contact you as they may also be able to offer further advice or assistance. If you would be happy for us to this if I could ask you to confirm by replying to this email.

 

If you want to discuss this further please call us on 03454 04 05 06 or reply to this e mail

 

Kind regards

 

Citizens Advice consumer service

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Audioboxer,

 

I'm please you are determined to pursue VM on this one. It is after all the retailer who is legally responsible rather than the manufacturer so you shouldn't have to approach Samsung.

 

Please keep us updated with progress.

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Audioboxer,

 

I'm please you are determined to pursue VM on this one. It is after all the retailer who is legally responsible rather than the manufacturer so you shouldn't have to approach Samsung.

 

Please keep us updated with progress.

 

Latest update is I'm waiting on a letter of deadlock from VM. CISAS will take my case but require this letter of deadlock before proceeding. Trading Standards had a 20 minute conversation with me the other day after phoning me and pretty much agreed VM are in the wrong. At this moment in time though their advice is to let CISAS take the case from here and see what the outcome is.

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Long time since I've been back! You can read updates here - http://community.virginmedia.com/t5/Virgin-Mobile/Repair-refused-on-days-old-handset-due-to-root-Galaxy-S6/m-p/2994718/highlight/false#M52494

 

But to summarize things, CISAS ruled against me, and stated they would not accept an appeal (usually they do... so this seemed iffy). All I could do was accept or reject, I obviously rejected. They said I had not provided evidence it was a hardware fault and Virgin had done nothing wrong... They advised me to pursue legal action if I wanted.

 

Trading standards then met with me and over the course of an hour meeting agreed I had a case worthy of taking to court, and the CISAS rejection was weak. However they did advise I approach Samsung first directly.

 

Samsung have now fixed the phone no questions asked :) There is a picture on the VM forums above confirming it was a physical fault.

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