Best Buy is cleaning up their act, Circuit City is filling their shoes

After all of the negative PR that Best Buy has received over the past couple years, I was pleasantly surprised by my visit tonight to get a new computer.

First off, I went to Circuit City first, simply because of the cloud of negative stigma that still lingers over Best Buy. Circuit City was pretty much empty (alright, it was 8:00 on a Tuesday night). I head back to the laptop section and browse around waiting for someone to come help me out. I stood there for ten minutes, no joke, allthewhile an extremely loud BEEPing noise sounded about every twenty seconds. It was part of the laptop alarm system. I was considering making the actual alarm go off just to get noticed by somebody.

After an attendant FINALLY showed up and asked if he could help me, I responded "Yes, I have two questions. First, can you PLEASE stop that incredibly annoying beeping?" Seriously, it was so distracting, I couldn't even think. He replied, "Actually, that sound is part of the laptop alarm system and it doesn't turn off. That's why we try to turn up the music in our store, to cover up the sound." ".......Are you serious?" I replied. "Yes, sir." "So you're telling me that it beeps all day and all night like that?" "Yes."

"Oooookaaaayyy, second question. Can you show me your laptops with high resolution screens?" You see, what he didn't know is that I was asking this because I already knew the answer, having had ten minutes to the computers by myself. We were standing directly in front of a computer that had a substantially higher screen resolution than any of the other computers. Anyone with half a brain could tell the difference between that computer and the rest with the naked eye. I was asking this to see if he knew what he was talking about, and if he answered the question correctly, I would consider his advice. "Well sir, they all pretty much have the same resolution. We are briefed on the specs for all our computers and they're pretty much all the same." "...So you're telling me that all of these computers have the same resolution?" "Yes." I walked out.

Then over at Best Buy, I walked in, was instantly greeted in the computer section, and the guy went through just about every single laptop he had available. Once I settled on a particular computer, I asked him if he could hook it up to an external monitor, which he proceeded to do. This involved powering down the laptop, taking it over to the display of monitors, hooking it all up, booting the machine, and setting the display settings. I ended up buying the display model because that's all they had left, and he even gave me a substantial discount due to a couple of minor scratches.

Throughout the whole experience, I felt like a valued customer, rather than just another shopper. After this experience, I am tempted to say that Best Buy is making a comeback. Thanks Robert at Best Buy in Tustin, CA!

MobileMe flat out needs a LOT of work

I don't write actual blogs much, so when I do, you know I'm either really excited about something, or really upset. Unfortunately, this is the latter. When I had originally set up MobileMe, I told it to synchronize my contacts with Outlook. On the initial sync, it uploaded all of my contacts from my iPhone to Outlook. However, today I had to remove the MobileMe account from Outlook. I take a look at my phone and...ALL OF MY CONTACTS ARE GONE!! That's almost 700 contacts. It looks like both Outlook and MobileMe rely on each other, so once the tie between Outlook and MobileMe was broken, Outlook erased my contacts, and so did MobileMe. Were they looking at each other and when the partnership was removed, they thought the contacts were removed? It seems like there is a serious design flaw when everything is removed on the termination of a partnership. Needless to say, I was pissed. So now I'm back to using a backup of my contacts from when I first set up my iPhone with my Windows Contacts. I probably lost a couple months worth of updated contacts, but at least it's better than starting from scratch. And I have no idea how to get my Windows Contacts back into Outlook unless I use Plaxo, which I may end up using. MobileMe, I hate you.