It was the end of 2018 and the end of battery replacement promotion for iPhone. I took two iPhones serviced and got this surprise experience.
I'd noticed that when booking the service via browser, I was forced to setup 2-factor authentication on my Apple ID which I always avoid that. So, I booked the Genius bar via Apple Support application. On the local holiday, it was 11:30 AM and I was at Apple Store ICONSIAM. The genius greeted and treated me as excellent as expect. The devices inspection were done using iOS built-in diagnostics software. Nothing was wrong until the genius couldn't enroll my Apple ID with the repairing process. She tried several methods, asked me to input few Apple ID and non Apple ID email but nothing was working. Finally, she brought me a traditional method, the paper work!. I'd found that it wasn't all localized to Thai language. Only the header and footer texts were Thai. During this, she could enroll my Apple ID with another iPhone. She asked me to be back by 2 PM for the successful enrollment and 3 PM for the paper enrollment.
I was back at 2 PM by appointment. It was crowd with only few geniuses available at the service table. I sit there for ten minutes before getting attention from a genius. I explained the morning situation to the genius and it took a while before several geniuses got in touch with me. One and a half hour later, I got the first iPhone back. There was one unexpected issue with this phone which was screen checking failure. There was an additional charging for screen repairing which was waived later but that took around ten minutes until the genius got me back. There was a ping-pong on genius side because of crowd. Around twenty minutes later, the genius returned with another iPhone. Due to the morning enrollment issue, there was another special process to handle this situation. The genius presented me a dummy Apple Store gift card. This card would make a payment valid because I would pay for this card and used it immediately. That would be used to fulfill the internal transaction on Apple side. Finally, at 4:30 PM, everything was finished. I could leave Apple Store!
From what I'd seen, it was another busy day at Apple Store but there were many things could be improved. Lacking of staffs for fulfilling the customers seems to be the problem here. I was at the service table with the 2 main geniuses. They relayed each other to the internal area bringing the devices to the service area but that wasn't sufficient enough. One hour later, another genius from the genius table, who served me on the morning, came here. Later, I hadn't seen the original geniuses on this area. (They might take a lunch break, who knows!) Half an hour later, another genius came. And another half an hour, the foreign genius came. By that time, there were 3 geniuses at the table. They tried their best to cool down customer mood which I thought, it was painful job. I didn't know how many staffs were there but it wasn't enough for such holiday traffic and I hoped that the situation would be improved.