Welcome to PhantomPilots.com

Sign up for a weekly email of the latest drone news & information

  1. Michael Sepesy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2016
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    11
    I am not your average Joe Smoe flying a drone for fun, or a hobby, with no experience. I actually fly a drone, the Phantom 4, for my business and sole income.

    My drone (Phantom 4) crashed 7 days ago. Today, I finally get a response, when I should have had an answer then. Now, today they tell me I will have answer in 24-48 hours, or maybe within a week or more, from support. Wow! That long? That quick? Gee thanks for your support!

    Got news for you DJI...if you don't solve this...I am going to the Yuneec Q500 that has way more to offer than the Phantom 4 via product stability, features, and support. With no claims of flyaway, crashes, firmware issues, no need of expensive tablets; or IPhone, IPad, or Android issues. Plus no need for an Osmo...because the Yuneec Q500 has a 4K camera THAT is detachable with a handhelp extension stick. to carryon for doing onfoot video and stillshot coverage. And yes. 4k video! NO NEED for almost $600 Osmo add on!

    And get this! They have American support to boot! I talked with a rep of theirs today. For 45 mins combined via online chat that actually works. And via phone.

    Don't get me wrong. I love the Phantom 4. But it has issues that DJI is not admitting. Guess DJI got way too involved in massive marketing since everyone and their brother is selling the thing. Too involved, that they lack customer support and standing by their product and admitting to glitches in the drone and firmware.

    For those Phantom Pilots out there, DJI online support chat..does not work. Pretty much forced to call the DJI Support number. And the only way to get through, is by hitting 1 for "rma" questions. Otherwise you get put on hold for 40 mins than get disconnected.

    Ok. So I hit 1. Went right to support. Also went through 3 support representatives. None were American. 3 times I got disconnected when they said they needed to put me on hold. The 4th time..I got an American speaking support rep. He pushed me through the system. But then told me..."sorry..it's going to take 24-48 hours, maybe a week or more" for an answer or resolution. Really?

    If you are running a drone photography business, isn't that way too much time to wait for an answer on why the product failed and requesting a replacement?

    There are glitches! Protect your drone. Biker's say "keep the wheels up right"! I am saying as a drone flyer "keeps your drone intact" and make sure it comes home safe and sound!
     
  2. flpholt

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2016
    Messages:
    4,178
    Likes Received:
    1,561
    Location:
    palm harbor florida
    go with autel x star premium
     
    MrTommy likes this.
  3. tcope

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2015
    Messages:
    3,551
    Likes Received:
    1,396
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Typhoon H GPS Lost! Fly Away! My story!

    Fly away... Experienced pilot. Decipher logs?

    Fly away, Drone okay, camera missing

    Flyaway? First one?

    As far as no crashes, I need to provide a link to the Google search as the listings are to numerous:

    Google

    This list goes on but I think people get the point. the Q500 has it's issues, just like any drone on the market.

    Yup. Always been this way. I see no indication of this changing any time soon.

    For those Phantom Pilots out there, DJI online support chat..does not work. Pretty much forced to call the DJI Support number. And the only way to get through, is by hitting 1 for "rma" questions. Otherwise you get put on hold for 40 mins than get disconnected.

    Can't say anyone can solve your problem here but posting your issue may 1) develop a solution for you and/or 2) let other people know that they may have the same issue.
     
  4. Markdo

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    San Francisco Bay Area
    DJI communication is problematic...

    I recently crashed my drone... Trees are definitely the enemy. Lesson learned.

    I sent my drone to DJI for repairs, and it just came back today... It only took 9 days from drop off to return. The cost was $198. It appears they actually gave me a completely new (refurbished?) drone (different serial number) rather than repaired the one I sent in. Only one test flight, but It seems to work well. I am a bit concerned that it is louder than my original. They are loud.

    Upon receiving the drone, it would not connect to the controller. No instructions about this. A phone call to DJI customer service quickly solved the problem. I was given simple instructions for creating an new linkage. It worked the first time.

    Though DJI repair seems to have done a good job, communicating with DJI customer service is not simple. They have definite protocols they expect us to comply with, but their instructions are confusing, and unnecessarily tedious. What should occur in one email, required several, and there is a lag in response time. Several points of confusion required multiple phone calls for clarification.

    Call number one... Informing DJI that I had crashed the drone and needed a repair.

    I received the first email. It contains a form that asks for your "DJI account for activation." What they are actually asking for is the email account you used to activate your device. (Phone call number two).

    A follow up email then contains a list of instructions, which are mostly clear, however, the first item requests that an attached "Customer Information Form" be completed. The form is not attached to the email. However, farther down a link is provided that takes you to a page with multiple forms listed. The "Customer Information Form" is not there, but another page titled a "Global Technical Support Form" seems to be what they want. (Phone call number three).

    They ask that you package the drone with bubble wrap, and do not include any accessories. They then make a confusing statement about sending the white Phantom box will "automatic qualify it for invoiced repair." They don't want the white phantom box. I basically put the drone (and only the drone) in the original foam container, put that in a cardboard box surrounded by bubble wrap. That worked. From what has been said, above, they don't like you to send the white box, and will not return it if you send it. (No phone call required here).

    A case number is provided at the end of the email. Apparently the case numbers and RMA numbers are interchangeable. Another point of confusion. (Phone call number four).

    It then took several days for DJI to generate a shipping label. (Phone call number five).

    Despite the unnecessary confusion, aggravation and phone calls... it all seemed to work. DJI could simplify this whole process by making a few small changes to their instruction emails (I will try to give them feedback).

    Meanwhile... Enjoy your drones. They are an amazing technology.

    Mark

    Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots mobile app
     
    Ed Fink likes this.
  5. WWK888

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2016
    Messages:
    663
    Likes Received:
    195
    If I was using a P4 for my business, I would consider having a backup on hand for situations such as this especially if this was my sole source of income. I wish you luck with the repair.


    Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots
     
    Meta4 and FlashBuddy like this.
  6. FlashBuddy

    Joined:
    May 17, 2016
    Messages:
    227
    Likes Received:
    61
    Location:
    Fort Collins, CO
    Yeah, you can pick up a Syma X5C-1 camera bird for 50 bucks LMAO. Seriously, we photogs always have a backup camera, like a policeman has a backup gun. Hey, where are you located? Maybe you can borrow mine? I'll want to tag along and get a cut of the proceeds of course!

    NoCo Drones
     
  7. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    7,759
    Likes Received:
    3,469
    But it sounds like you don't know much about drones if you think the Q500 has more to offer but if you believe that a Q500 is a better machine for your purposes, that's good for you.
    WWK is right. Any professional has to have backup.
     
    flpholt likes this.
  8. ElGuapo

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2016
    Messages:
    524
    Likes Received:
    138
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    Plus one on the Autel Premium. I have one, customer support is the best. I was able to talk to a live person on a Friday night at 6:00pm. Support lines are open 24/7.

    I also have a P3P, I prefer the X star premium. Also check out YouTube about the X Star Premium.


    Sent from my iPhone using PhantomPilots
     
    flpholt likes this.
  9. Michael Sepesy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2016
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    11
    I just started the business. I have a backup. My business partner has P3. But their are times that we need two drones. We launched the business quickly to get a jump start over other's. Insurance, business cards, flyers, radio adds, tv commercials, shirts, and vehicle decals are not cheap. Doing all with cash flow from another side business. No credit cards or loans. A percentage of our profit's goes into the kiddie fund for more drones, equipment and so forth. The P4 was my first drone. But I am not novice to flying. I have 20 years plus into planes and copters. None of which were reliant on firmware or software. And never had a flyaway. I seriously had absolutely no issues with 74 flights on the P4. Something went wacky with on the 75th flight. Out of the clear blue.
    I may not know an extreme amount about drones. But I do know this crash was not my error.
     
  10. Meta4

    Meta4 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    Messages:
    7,759
    Likes Received:
    3,469
    DJI aren't the best at communicating details of incidents.
    If you are wanting to deal with DJI, it would be to your advantage to have some understanding of what went wrong (and unless you had the very latest firmware version), you might be able to get a lot of information yourself.

    Go to http://www.phantomhelp.com/LogViewer/Upload/
    Follow the instructions to upload your flight record.
    If you had updated to the latest firmware you might be out of luck as there are problems reading the flight data with it.
    In that case HealthyDrones may be able to provide some info but not the full flight data.

    Come back and post a link to the report it provides and someone here might be able to analyse it and give you an understanding of the cause of the incident and perhaps point you to a likely area to search for the Phantom.
     
  11. Michael Sepesy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2016
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    11
    I did have the latest firmware. Checked that as part of my preflight check list. No one can decipher it. It is the only flight that cannot be read. So far by anyone. Not even Healthy Drones. It's all in some strange Chinese coding. Only I know for sure is that it is definitely in Chinese. Kind of strange, because just happens to be when my drone went bizirk and crashed somewhere.
     
  12. ElGuapo

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2016
    Messages:
    524
    Likes Received:
    138
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    This forum is full of stories similar to yours, slow response or in some case no response at all from DJI. If you do get a response they give you the run around.. take a few minutes to read this thread: DJI Care Don't Care

    In theory a $1,100 plus drone should not have any issues, unfortunately they do, DJI does not admit that their drones have issues. Sometimes people are completely blind to this reality, if something happens to a drone made by DJI, it is not a big deal, there is a big name behind it. If something happens to another drone made NOT made by DJI then the quality is subpar. Truth is that DJI needs to be hold accountable for not standing behind their customer support, people just keep buying their products.

    When I was looking into buying the X-Star Premium I called Autel to ask couple of questions. In matter of minutes I was able to talk to a live person. I hung up the phone and forgot to ask a question about the promotion for the free battery, so I sent an email them an email. In less than 10 minutes I got a response to my question, later I received a follow up email to my original email.
    Call DJI to ask a question or call customer care and let me know if and when you are able to talk to a live person.

    In an ideal world, every drone would work perfectly, right out of the box. Unfortunately, in the real world, sometimes drones have problems. When problems happen, it’s important to have someone to turn to for help. Autel Robotics has made a commitment to customer service. They provide 7-day per week customer support via phone, email or live chat. It’s difficult to put a value on customer support. If you never need it, it’s worth nothing, but if you must have it, there’s no substitute.
     
    #12 ElGuapo, Aug 25, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2016
    flpholt, Suhail78 and Michael Sepesy like this.
  13. Michael Sepesy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2016
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    11
    Well, if they don't replace my drone, I will be going with a company that actually has customer service and compassion towards the customer and their product. It wil be an Autel or Yuneec product . Haven't decided yet. Sad thing is, I feel bad that I recommended the P4 to 3 of my friends, and they actually were going to purchase one. Fortunately I was able to get ahold of them and halted them from buying one. Am glad they held off! Word of mouth is a powerful thing. I only pay cash for my possesions. I don't believe in credit cards. Right now I don't have the cash to just go out and replace my drone.
     
    #13 Michael Sepesy, Aug 25, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2016
  14. ElGuapo

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2016
    Messages:
    524
    Likes Received:
    138
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    Sad thing is that DJI will not admit to their issues or even get back to you.

    I am sorry about your loss...
     
    Michael Sepesy likes this.
  15. Michael Sepesy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2016
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    11
    What repair? Haven't found my drone yet to even repair it. Why? Because my response from DJI is they are looking into the matter of my flight log that so far no one can read. That it may take 24-48 hours, or maybe even up to a week or more. Pretty hard to repair something you don't have. Took them 7 days to actually send me a questionnaire form that would actually open.
     
  16. Michael Sepesy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2016
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    11
    Thank you!. They did get back with me. But only with a runaround. After 7 days of hounding them, but only to tell me it could be up to a week or even more to decipher my garbled flight log. Meanwhile it's being rained on somewhere. Possibly stolen. If it wasn't destroyed. It probably is now! Either that it is just gone! For all I know, probably using this as example for people to buy their ridiculously priced insurance. All I know is, followed my same routine with my preflight. Everything was normal and the safe to fly go ahead. Little did I know it would go nuts and disappear.
     
  17. ElGuapo

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2016
    Messages:
    524
    Likes Received:
    138
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    I would NOT even consider buying their DJI care
     
    Michael Sepesy likes this.
  18. Michael Sepesy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2016
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    11
    Don't plan on it!
     
  19. 9245

    Joined:
    May 15, 2016
    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    23
    Are some of you seriously comparing a Phantom 4 to the Autel?o_O

    It is a ripoff of a Phantom 2 with some version of P3 like sensors, it doesn't even come close to the P4. It has been awhile since I looked at the specs, but just off the top of my head, it is slower, has a shorter flight time, the camera is not quite as nice, it doesn't have all of the same smart features, it is not open source software, and the range is WAY shorter. How much does Autel pay for shills anyway? I see a lot of them, the youtube ones are the worse.
     
  20. Michael Sepesy

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2016
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    11
    Actually, yes I am. And leaning more towards the Yuneec G500. I want a company that actually has a real customer service department that will back up their product and actually pay attention to the customer and address matters in a timely fashion. And more so, one that don't give you the runaround. I paid good money for my P4 and I sure am not getting my situation addressed in a timely or professional manner.

    7 days in a row now, you might as well forget DJI's live support chat actually working. And if want to get a live person from support on the phone, you have to press one to get the rma department regardless if you are returning something or not. If tou send an email to support, it takes 2-3 days to get a response. If you even get one.

    To me, support means alot. And support says alot about a company.