Zagg. It could have been better.

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When I discovered invisibleSHIELD on the 'net, I immediately knew it would be the best protection available for our soon-to-be-purchased iPhone 3G's, so I went on line and ordered two of the iPhone shields to be sent to our Hong Kong address. The shields were not going to ship until after the iPhone 3G's had begun shipping, and actual shipping of the shields to us here in Hong Kong would take 3 weeks to get here but that was acceptable.

That order was made in the middle of June.

When I arrived in L.A. in late June, I immediately ordered shields for my MacBook Pro and the screen on my Canon camera (impossible to do online because there were bugs in their web ordering system). Because I was living in L.A., I specified my L.A. address when I ordered the items over the phone, and the items arrived before I returned to Hong Kong. I had time to apply the camera shield but not the MacBook Pro shield because it involved many more pieces of plastic; some of them very large. To be extra careful, I viewed the demo video on zagg's web site before applying the camera shield.

Back in Hong Kong, I set about applying the shield to the MacBook Pro. I was dismayed to find that the kit for the MacBook Pro contained only the same amount of special fluid as was included in the kit for the camera shield even though the surface area of the MacBook Pro shield would be at least ten times larger than that of the camera shield. I proceeded to apply the shield regardless.

Everything went pretty well although it was impossible to get every bubble out from under the plastic. Unfortunately, when I got to the last piece of shielding which also happened to be the largest, there was insufficient fluid remaining with which to wet my hands and both sides of the shielding (as instructed in the video). I had to chance it. Worse though was that it was almost impossible to handle such a large piece of sticky plastic, especially without enough fluid, the result being that one corner of the plastic folded on itself and stuck like superglue. The only thing I could do was cut off the folded corner and accept the fact that one corner of my MacBook Pro would not be protected.

I wrote to Zagg about the situation, suggesting that they record a video for the MacBook Pro shield, and requesting that if at all possible they send me a replacement for the folded piece of plastic; with sufficient fluid of course. Other than the computer generated email to indicate that they'd received my email, they ignored me completely.

I accepted the situation and moved on.

This week, I received an email from the company stating that our two iPhone shields had been shipped, refused and returned. It turns out that Zagg had incorrectly shipped the iPhone shields to the L.A. address instead of the Hong Kong address I specified when I ordered them. When I replied to their email pointing out their error, they completely ignored the order confirmation issued by their own company, insisted that the shipping address on the original order was the L.A. one, and insisted that I pay shipping charges to Hong Kong.

I was probably one of a minority of unlucky customers, but Zagg's arrogance is still something to be very wary of. I wonder if I'll ever see the iPhone shields…

Update (August 28)

Zagg has replied indicating that while I supplied our Hong Kong address as the billing address, I supplied the L.A. address as the shipping address. Unfortunately for them, this is impossible because I was not aware of the L.A. address until after I arrived in L.A. on June 16 when visiting with Peisha. The iPhone shields were ordered on June 11. There is something really screwy with their system!

Update (August 28)

Zagg replied again, still adamant that I had given them the L.A. address as my shipping address. They're not asking for a lot of money to reship the iPhone shields so I'll pay it and be done with it, but I don't like the way they do business. Here's a copy of my final message to their support people. What's missing from this version of the message is a copy of an email conversation I had with their tech support people when while ordering the shields for my MacBook Pro and Canon camera, I was unable to specify an L.A. shipping address and a Hong Kong billing address!!!

In summary people, the Zagg shields might be as good as they claim, but their service is absolutely dreadful. If you have one and only one address, you'll probably get your order. If you have more than one address, think twice before ordering from Zagg.

Take care all.

Dear Jenn,

I appreciate the opportunity to redress your corporation.

I will repay the shipping fees, but for the record, here's something else for you to chew on. when I ordered the shields for my **MacBook Pro and Canon camera** while staying in L.A., I attempted to order via your web site specifying Hong Kong as my billing address and L.A. and my shipping address. it was NOT POSSIBLE to confirm the order. below are a few of the email messages related to that incident.

so between:

  1. the confirmation sent to me by your corporation that specifies both the shipping and billing addresses as being those of Hong Kong, and
  2. the fact that I was not aware of the L.A. address at the time I ordered the iPhone shields, and
  3. your system was incapable of accepting an order where the billing address was Hong Kong and the shipping address was L.A. when I tried to order my MacBook shield two weeks later,

you guys have it completely wrong, or you're covering for someone in the company, or your IT system is screwed up, or something else much worse.

if you think the original order has both the shipping address listed as the L.A. one, I challenge you to retrieve a copy of the order archived by your automated backup systems on the night of the order.

the arrogance of your corporation is staggering. I have never encountered such arrogance before. hopefully, this will be the last time, and I'll steer my fans away from your corporation as well. I wouldn't want them to get hurt by someone so ruthless.


Update (August 28 evening)

It has occurred to me that the whole fiasco may have been caused by human error. When I couldn't order the MacBook Pro and Canon shields online while in L.A., I was forced to call Zagg's phone sales centre. It is quite possible that the lady who took my order mistakenly (and with good intentions) also changed the shipping address for the iPhone shields. I've notified Zagg of this possibility, and suggested that they compare archived versions of my order from before and after the MacBook Pro order. I suspect that the orders will be different. However, I doubt that the Zagg personnel will actually go so far as to retrieve multiple archived versions of my order to get to the bottom of this eventually proving that they were at fault. We'll see.

Update (August 29 evening)

There has been absolutely no response to my last email messages which is understandable given the harshness of the messages. I have nonetheless paid the (extremely reasonable) re-shipping fee and Zagg will reship the iPhone shields to us on the next working day; i.e., Monday. Thankfully, they're shipping the shields by first class instead of their standard shipping method so we'll receive the shields in a week and a bit instead of 3 weeks and a bit.

Obviously, it wasn't worth my time or energy to complain about or investigate the shipping error. Zagg were only asking for a few U.S. dollars to reship the items to me, and I give them a thumbs up for their shipping options and prices.

My only concern now is how the shields will affect Chinese input on the iPhone. With the iPhone, we can use our fingers to draw the Chinese characters, and the software is incredible at recognising the characters irrespective of stroke order or neatness. However, there are times when the glass can become rubbery to the touch making it harder to draw the characters quickly and accurately. The invisibleSHIELD on my MacBook Pro is very 'sticky' and I fear it will impede my ability to draw the characters with a smooth sliding action. Handwritten Chinese input is important to me, so if the shield does in fact affect Chinese input, I'll have to remove it. Now wouldn't that be a laugh!

Cheers all. Time to sleep.


Comments (Comments are closed)

11 Responses to “Zagg. It could have been better.”
  1. gabe says:

    Oh, you could have get one in MK at $200HKD...

  2. rbshen says:

    tell us if you find an alternative protection because I don't like them neither

  3. lantan says:

    Hi Greg,

    You would experiencing more and more bad customer service experience when you live there for longer.

    I got sick of some american being so close-minded. The whole thing was that they couldn't imagine someone would have address in two different countries. A lot of american don't even have an passport. They have never been anywhere outside their "lovely" country.

    I tried to get my car fixed when I was living there. They wouldn't let me take the car though it was under my name. They would only release it when my gweilo husband was there. I have so many stories to share.

    Are you moving to the US for good? Good luck.


  4. Nevin says:

    The screen protector part of the invisibleShield is the worst protector I ever use. It's very "sticky" and affects your finger movement. I would recommend Capcase or ARM.

  5. Roger says:

    Hi Greg,

    Sounds like you went throught a lot of trouble to get the shields, lets hope it doesn't end up affecting the iPhones input! Keep us updated.

  6. Richard Lai says:

    Sorry to hear about the mess. Shit happens.

    However, I really don't think the iPhone needs a screen protector - I have, on many occasions, scratched my iPhone's (2G) screen with my keys in front of friends just to show off its toughness.

    I've had the phone for almost a year now (without any shields) and all I've got so far is a very short, hardly-noticeble fine scratch. Same with the silver back.

    I just don't believe in phone/screen shields - as long as you don't put a device in the same pocket as your keys, you should be fine.

  7. Dana says:

    Are you using any special apps for Chinese input. I found the built-in support to be lacking. Now I don't use chinese input very much at all. Maybe some grocery lists or things like that but I had real difficulty with the character recognition. Writing the character in the tiny space that they give you and note I don't have stubby fingers!

  8. Bevan says:

    G'day Greg,

    I have an iPhone 3G with the invisible shield. Interestingly, the iPhone 3G shields arrive with a long tube of liquid. Twice as long as the previous one.

    I have an iPod Touch and iPhone 3G, and I use the Chinese input function. The skin becomes 'unsticky' after a while (for me anyway) and I haven't found any problems with using both of them to write Chinese.

    Hope this helps.

  9. 河國榮 says:

    hi Dana.

    my wife and I actually find the Chinese writing input on the iPhone 3G to be really good, and I'm pretty sure my fingers are bigger than yours ;-)

    remember though that there are some characters where the stroke order is important.

  10. 河國榮 says:


    thank you for that information. I might apply the cover to my wife's iPhone and see how she manages before applying it to mine. I use a Belkin armband with a very tight fit for the iPhone, and I fear that adding the InvisibleShield will make it impossible to insert or remove the iPhone from the armband.

  11. Che says:

    then get a blackberry...