Apple products have a repair shop problem in India

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Apple supplier is increasing its ability to build masses of iPhones in India
Apple has to rely on third-party repair shops in the country.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple has another potential problem in India: the sub-par repair options available for its products.

According to a new report, Apple’s authorized repair shops in the country are disappointing to say the least. That’s especially bad for a company which is well known for providing some of the best customer service around.

To be fair to Apple, it’s forced to rely on independent authorized repairers due to its lack of retail stores which can double as repair shops. (Not that it hasn’t been trying to change this for years.) Nonetheless, it seems that the options available — listed on Apple’s website — aren’t exactly winning the hearts of customers.

Disappointing customer service

Specifically, these stores can take weeks to make minor repairs, and provide generally disappointing customer service. For out-of-warranty products, this can mean charging extremely high fees. Even having an in-warranty product doesn’t necessarily guarantee high quality service.

The BuzzFeed report on the topic notes that:

“In a survey measuring customers’ willingness to recommend a company’s products or services to others by Mumbai-based business analysis firm RedQuanta and shared exclusively with BuzzFeed News, Apple scored – 22, among the lowest in the industry. RedQuanta, which counts companies like BMW, Ford, Google, and Microsoft among its clients, interviewed 550 Apple customers at 80 Apple authorized services centers in India.

In RedQuanta’s survey, Apple had some of the lowest scores for customer satisfaction, issue resolution, and empathy of store staff to customers and their problems. RedQuanta said 60% of respondents found staff in Apple service centers in India to be ‘arrogant,’ and common complaints included staff not being receptive to customers’ concerns about their devices.”

On the other end of the spectrum, Samsung and China’s Xiaomi scored very highly with their after-sales care.

Challenges in India

As noted, Apple’s options are somewhat limited in India — since it’s so far been unable to open its own official stores. It has also been forced to put up iPhone prices after the introduction of new tariffs. The result is that it has struggled to make headway in India, home to the world’s second largest population.

Apple has run into similar problems in places like China, where poor behavior from companies in its supply chain are often blamed on Apple. In the same way that Apple has worked with suppliers to improve this part of their business, however, maybe something similar can be done for third-party repair shops in India.

Do you think this is something Apple is in a position to change? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.