Xiaomi has been ordered by the city consumer court in Bangaluru, to refund the phone’s full cost to a consumer who was charged for repairs within the phone’s warranty period.
The company’s service center collected repair charges from a customer in Bangaluru, despite the phone being within the warrenty period. This led to a city consumer court filing a case against the company, ordering them to refund the phone’s full cost, apart from litigation expenses, to the concerned customer.
The customer realized the display of his new Xiaomi phone had gone blank, though he was able to receive calls and the handset was vibrating. He was told that his screen was damaged and that it needed to be change. Two days later, an executive from the center informed the customer of a damaged motherboard in addition to the screen. He was further advised by the team to purchase a new phone instead of paying for the damage, which was equivalent to the price of a new handset.
The customer demanded service as per the warranty or a full refund for his handset, which was only seven months old. He approached the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Bangalore Urban, on several unrequested demands to the service center, including un-responded emails from Xiaomi.
The litigation lasted for over two years, and the customer presented his case alone. Xiaomi tried to prove that the damage done to the phone, including problems with the motherboard, was customer-induced, thus claiming it cannot be covered under warranty. Xiaomi’s counsel presented documents stating one year warranty for hardware and six months for battery, charger and other accessories on the company’s products.
In January 2018, the consumer forum court pointed out that the cellphone was under one-year warranty when the problem arose, however, the Xiaomi service center collected repair charges on illegal terms.
On January 4, 2018, the court ordered Xiaomi Technology India Private Ltd and TVS Electronics Ltd. to pay Rs 10,999 to the concerned customer, including a full refund for the damaged handset.