If you’ve read my article “The Art of Turboing,” you know that I’ve had run-ins with UPS before. Years ago, they didn’t offer package tracking for ground shipments.
Although UPS has fixed that, the tracking service they offer… Lies.
It lies often.
What’s the point in having package tracking if it’s so unreliable that you can’t trust it?
I know that Apple requested extra security for the iPad rollout. I can understand not wanting to advertise where a shipping depot might have a large number of prerelease iPads. But surely there was a way to do it that wouldn’t cause anxiety for thousands of expectant customers? This reflected badly not just on UPS, but on Apple as well. It seems odd that Steve Jobs, notorious perfectionist, would accept this kind of inattention to detail from a vendor.
My iPad was shipped from China on the 29th of March. UPS quickly showed it making its way to Alaska, and then to Louisville, Kentucky. It then sat there for days. OK, so far nothing too strange.
Of course, that’s the story now. If you had been watching the package’s progress, you would have seen a number of entries related to clearing Customs. They disappeared from the record a few hours after they appeared.
There was one cryptic entry entitled “UPS Internal Activity” that appeared for a brief while before disappearing. The most interesting part about that entry was that it had a timestamp 10 hours in the future.
At least that entry had a local location stamp. That was the only time that the tracked package appeared to move until it was actually delivered to me. As far as I could see, the package was stuck in Kentucky until being magically teleported into my hands.
At least UPS had two employees watching Twitter to reassure all the confused Apple customers.
FedEx gets this right. I don’t understand what’s so hard for UPS that they can’t master package tracking after all these years.
Certainly, if I have a package to send and I want to be able to track it, I’m not going to choose UPS after this experience!
The iPad did arrive safe and sound, eventually. I used it to compose this post.