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Gateway Falsified MD7820u & MD7822u specs! BEWARE!

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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January 17, 2009 1:53:10 AM

See the updates further down the thread

The Gateway MD7820u DOES NOT use the Radeon Mobility 3650 as the gateway site advertised (until it was changed on the site 1/16/09). It in fact comes with the Intel GMA 4500MHD. Gateway provided specs to all it's retailers and they still advertise this computer as having the Radeon Mobility 3650. I made the mistake of ordering this model on the 14th and it arrived today. The Level 1 support was sympathetic and still had the Mobility 3650 listed as standard in this model as well. I was transferred to Level 2 support and they hung up on me when I asked their badge #. Literally one hour of on hold later I made it back to the same gentleman who disconnected me the first time. I actually got his ID this time. He said it wasn't Gateway's fault if a retailer made a typo. I kindly reminded him that obviously if the specs that Level 1 Support listed the mobility 3650 as standard equipment then it wasn't a retailer typo. In fact, I went so far as to guide this gentleman to the Gateway site where the link to buy this computer showed Amazon.com, Buy.com, and J&R still displaying the specifications for the MD7820u as supplied to them by Gateway and all still show the Radeon Mobility 3650 as included. Level 2 support then said well just exchange it for another from the retailer (OfficeMax). I pointed out that it would be an identical computer I got in exchange and it would still be missing the Radeon 3650. He actually asked what I wanted him to do about that. I told him I would happily exchange the computer for one comparably equipped that had the advertised 3650. He told me that was out of the question. My case was 'escalated to corporate' and I got to leave my name and number and a brief message. I might get called back Monday. There's gonna be alot of pissed off people out there that have ordered this computer.
January 17, 2009 2:03:16 AM

Everyone else out there that got shafted shout out and maybe Gateway and Acer (Parent to Gateway) will listen.
January 17, 2009 2:29:07 AM

Wow that's something! I wish I bought it so I could sued them! :D 
January 17, 2009 5:46:30 AM

Keep us posted pondscum... I'm interested to see how this pans out.

At the very least they should provide an alternative that meet the advertised specs.

Better though that they suitably compensate you for the idiots you have encountered working in their customer service department. I personally find it offensive how customer service reps tend to behave and thoroughly enjoy seeing them taken down a peg or two.
January 19, 2009 1:41:54 PM

Right then. Never again will I buy a laptop online. In addition to lying about the graphics, gateway also put ddr2 memory in instead of ddr3! I built my desktop and know what went into it. This is ridiculous. So update time.
OfficeMax is giving me a full refund and crediting the full cost of the MD7820u back to the checkcard I used without charging any type of restocking fee. They are even picking it up from my house via UPS. Bravo!
As for gateway, I'm using the restore disks I made when I got this piece of garbage to put it back to original factory settings and I'll never do business with gateway/acer again.

Whats really frightening is I looked into getting another computer from office max just in case they were willing to give me a straight swap for the same priced laptop.

I saw this model on the Office Max website
http://www.officemax.com/omax/catalog/sku.jsp?skuId=217...

Newegg posts these specs for the same laptop different color
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Sony says Newegg got it right. OfficeMax said they had no way to verify the specs via telephone support or online even when I told them their specs weren't for the NS230E but for the NS235J according to Sony
http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Prod...
January 21, 2009 6:41:31 PM

I just got off the phone with the Better Business Bureau about gateway, and wanted to update people on further developments.
BOTH the Gateway MD7820u and MD7822u Dont have either DDR3 memory or the Radeon Mobility 3650 They use DDR2 and the Intel GMA 4500MHD. This information is printed on the physical model boxes. While Gateway changed the webpage of the MD7820u (much to the denial of level 2 support) they still have bogus info on their site regarding the MD7822u sold through Staples. Give me a bit and I will post some pics from the Gateway site so when they change their site again and claim ignorance people can refer them to the screenshots. I called Staples and hopefully they'll fix the specs from their end irregardless of Gateway.

January 22, 2009 12:44:18 AM

Thanks for the heads up in a definite case of buyer beware!

It is a shame that 99% of these units sold will never be returned for a refund, most will naturally just assume they have got what they paid for.

I believe that by law here in Australia, that if you pay for something advertised with certain specs, if the product doesn't meet those specifications you are well within your rights to demand and be given a product that does. It is only pictures that may be used for illustrative purposes only that can differ slightly (usually this is only a colour difference).

It's really good to hear though that you have been fully refunded with no out of pocket expenses, albeit with a little banging your head against a brick wall.
January 23, 2009 6:23:47 PM

Ahhh... the drama continues. An Acer Corporation representative called me after being contacted by the Better Business Bureau and made the following claims: (Who knows what they said to the Better Business Bureau)

Acer/Gateway:
1. are in no way responsible for any listed specifications to any models described on their websites and are under no obligation to sell the computers with the said specifications.
2. are able to sell the same model to different retailers with different configurations without changing the model name/number.
3. may list any optional specifications under a computer model on their website without designating those specifications as in fact optional.
4. customers are responsible for the specifications of the models they buy, retailers are responsible next, and that Acer/Gateway can't be held responsible at all.

I had to challenge the guy on these. I know sometimes cost, suppliers, part malfunctions and the like cause a company to have to change the specs on a computer. But to fail to sell the computer in the first place under its original specs was deceitful and false advertising. I told him about the MD7822u being sold via Staples that is billed inaccurately on the Gateway site as seen above and by the specs provided to Staples. He said Staples could order that computer in multiple configurations. I asked if he could provide those configurations and he couldn't and just started repeating himself. I asked him when I finished his phone call and spoke with Staples if they would verify what he was saying. He got very quiet for a moment before starting to repeat his previous assertions.
I have just contacted corporate Staples. Lets just see where this goes.
January 27, 2009 9:37:02 PM

The Better Business Bureau forwarded to me Gateway's response to them (I edited out the reps name)
Company's Response
Company's Initial Response - Posted 01/23/2009
Thank you for your recent inquiry. We appreciate the Better Business Bureau’s efforts to resolve consumer complaints and to promote communications between businesses and consumers. Mr. Allen’s desired settlement was for Gateway to correct advertising, send correct information to the retailers and to call him. I spoke to Mr. Allen and explained that we have multiple configurations for our computer models. I also informed him that at the webpage states “See retailer for sale terms and conditions” and is update regularly. We give the correct information to our retailers. I hope this letter has satisfactorily addressed the Better Business Bureau’s concerns. Thank you again for your inquiry and for providing the opportunity to respond. If you have any additional questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Best Regards, W*** * Corporate Customer Care
Initial Response Summary



I was given the opportunity for rebuttal and I submitted:
"I was in fact told by W**** that neither Gateway or Acer could be held legally responsible for any specifications published for the model MD7820u or the MD7822u. He also stated that Gateway and Acer reserved the right to advertise computers with parts that were optional and said they didn't have to identify those parts as optional in the said computer's specifications. I asked him how that didn't constitute deceptive business practices and false advertisement since the Gateway site has a "Buy Now" button on each model page without any option to configure the computer any differently from the advertised specifications."

Gateway has removed the Radeon Mobility 3650 part from the MD7822u overview page but has not fixed the DDR3 claim yet. Both the Radeon and DDR3 are still claimed on the specs page though. Bet Staples was ticked
February 1, 2009 2:29:19 PM

As a basic consumer, I'm disappointed by what my fellow consumers have gone through regarding the Gateway/OfficeMax dilema. But most savvy, computer users (and shoppers) should've known that Gateway has been on the verge of bankruptcy for YEARS!
This by no means excuses the false advertisement claims, but people...C'MON! What do you expect from a PC company hanging on by a thread AND a company that specializes in selling paper clips & ink toner!
February 3, 2009 5:17:49 PM

I am impressed by your tenacity to get to the root of all this. I would have given up after I got the refund from the retailer and went and bought a different laptop from a different company.

I'm interested to see how this all turns out.
!