Calling tech support

I make no bones about it, I am no expert in this industry, I have only been doing wireless for a year, and am learning on the fly.

I read manuals and utilize the web like its the crack dealer for information if information happenned to be made out of crack. But when it comes down to it, and I need a definitive answer about something, or confirmation that my understanding is correct (or moreover not even in the same ballpark), I dial tech support.

Now I do phone support for our company, and get annoyed when people call up basically wanting us to set up their home network for them under the guise of WISP tech support.

Is it the same thing with Tech support for the equipment manufacturers? Take moto for example, For Prizm alone, I bet I called tech support 30 to 40 times on various things (the first ten calls were basically them telling me I had to install everything exactly as it said, version numbers and all). Are they doing my job for me? I did need the help because i didnt have the answer. But when does calling tech support go from me needing some help to me just basically being incompetent?

With new products especially, do you guys make alot of use of tech support, or do you just already know the answers from experience?

I have also done my share of technical support for the past 3 years. There are those who call to confirm information, those who call to have me basically help them get something setup, and those who are repeat offenders because they are ignorant to finding information themselves and once again I help them configure whatever it is they need. If it is a repeat caller, I usually point them in the direction of where to find information themselves. I’d like to say most people would look up information if they knew of a reliable source (read: RTFM) to get the information from. On the other hand, I’d say most people disregard the sources of information (read again: RTFM) and skip straight to the support line for an immediate answer and not a fundamental understanding of how/why.

Now, sometimes I get irritated, yes. But I never let the customer know, and quite frankly, I actually get some satisfaction out of helping everyone who calls. It’s almost like the satisfaction I get if I were to call a tech support line and got my question(s) answered. More so a relief…

With new products, I tend to try to read as much as possible from manuals/datasheets/documents/forums I can. For the sake of this being a Motorola forum, I recently got a few sets of 5700 BH20s. Never used them before. I’ve always built my own backhauls from Soekris boards that run Linux…always done my own routing etc. So to me, these are a “new product”. I know they’ve been around, so I know there is documentation out on the forums/internet/manuals. Most of the documentation will most likely answer my question(s) that I may have. If I run into too many conflicting “facts” or answers about something I’m researching, at that point, I will place a call to tech support to confirm which is correct.

I read manuals and utilize the web like its the crack dealer for information if information happenned to be made out of crack.

My new favorite quote for this week. =)