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Comment Re:Check your receipt (Score 1) 543

This is going to depend on individual store policy. At the store I work at, we attempt to sell the client the PC Setup, and if they don't want the service and that's all the stock we have left, we give it to them for free.

Some stores are obviously more shady than others. It's up to individual store management.

I would never ring up a client's PC purchase and scan the PC Setup SKU without discussing it with the client first.

Comment Re:Aggressive Upsell (Score 1) 543

Not only that, but they up the price by about $80. Granted, getting the recovery disks (THAT I SHOULD ALREADY BE GETTING) almost makes this worthwhile, but I'm gonna be irritated if I have to uninstall even *more* crap.

I went to BB to look at an HP G4-1117DX and all they had were the ones with this treatment.

Part of this service is the removal of the "crap." The only new software they install is the antivirus software that you choose.

Comment They charge for this (Score 4, Interesting) 543

I work at Geek Squad.

Before I worked here, I abhorred the Geek Squad. But I needed a job, so I took this one. It's not really that bad.

Tons of people actually want this service. They pay $100 for us to turn on the computer for the first time, go through the Windows out-of-box experience, uninstall the Norton/McAfee 30-day trial, install 1-year (or more) Trend Micro/Kaspersky/Webroot of their choosing, burn recovery discs (since the OEMs don't include them anymore), and install all Windows updates.

All this takes about 2-3 hours and we use automated software to do this stuff.

We "preset" computers as well, meaning we take them out of the box, perform all of these services, and then rebox them up and badge them as "Set up by a Geek Squad Agent." We are only supposed to pre-set up a certain percentage of our stock, however, a lot of what we agents call "cowboy managers" (managers who break standard corporate operating procedure) make agents set up 50% or more of the stock, hoping that people will be more inclined to purchase setups if they are already performed and they're all that's left.

A lot of times at my store we give away the presets because the client doesn't want to pay and the preset stock is all that's left. It sounds to me like you got one of the preset units and they never charged you for it.

By the way, the only two types of tape available in the entire store are "Inspected by Best Buy" tape and "Geek Squad Priority" tape. The tape says "Inspected by Best Buy" because it indicates that Best Buy is the one who sealed the box last. It doesn't mean that the presetup process is an "inspection."

Given the high demand by some to buy their computers pre-set up, I don't think it's such a horrible service anymore. Some people are just stupid and want to turn on the computer for the first time and just click IE. The out of box experience, as silly as it sounds, can be confusing to many users, and they would rather walk out the door knowing that the antivirus is installed properly, even if that isn't hard to do at all.

Before you go hating on Best Buy, keep in mind that margins in PCs are extremely low. Best Buy _loses_ money if you buy a non-Apple computer without any Geek Squad services. This is called selling a "brick." The PC sales market is extremely cut-throat. Office Depot makes its money by hoping you never send in a rebate or send it in incorrectly. Best Buy makes its money by attaching services. Without this, the price of buying a computer from these stores would go up.

Comment Re:Two senses of "closed." (Score 4, Informative) 850

No, Apple wanted to not use DRM from the beginning, but the record labels were too afraid to do that (the selling music online industry was in its infancy, especially for the mainstream). Once Apple got too big, it got to call the shots because it controlled the iTunes Music Store (and thus almost all of downloadable music) and the record labels resented that because they wanted to increase prices. The industry only gave way on the DRM issue because they needed to create a competitor to Apple, so they did so by giving Amazon permission for DRM-free distribution. Then Apple negotiated and had a trade-off: they got rights to higher quality files without DRM in exchange for giving the labels the variable pricing scheme that iTunes now has.

Comment They forgot the beeping interfaces (Score 5, Insightful) 874

That's one thing that always drives me nuts when I'm watching computers being used on TV or in the movies... EVERY user interface element BEEPS. Text will scroll on the screen (no idea why it won't just show all at once) and as the computer renders each and every single character, it lets out a beep. That sort of machine would drive me nuts after about 3 minutes of use.

Comment Re:August (Score 1) 1146

I have a pretty high tolerance for clothes shopping, but it's starting to get annoying sometimes as my girlfriend promises boobies and I keep getting kicked out of her booth before the door is even closed. The employees who do this are always rude, too, firing me a dirty look as though I'm walking off the street trying to get a quickie fuck and not just trying to get a little boobage happiness to make a loooooong annoying walk through the store looking for clothes worth it. Victoria's Secret just flat out told me that men are not allowed near the fitting room sections at all. *sigh*..

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