Problems With Garmin Support and My StreetPilot 7500

I’m trying to spend some money with Garmin, but they won’t let me.

I’m a fan of Garmin GPS receivers, particularly devices like the GPSMap 478, a wonderful chart-plotting GPS. I also have a StreetPilot 7500, a nice large-screen GPS that I use in the truck. I’ve spend thousands on Garmin hardware and maps since my first Garmin device, a GPS 12, back in 1995. If you count the devices I’ve bought for others and my referrals that total is well north of $10,000.

A while ago, maybe in mid-late 2007, Garmin updated their internal systems at my.garmin.com. I had multiple GPSes registered with them, including the StreetPilot 7500. The old system was never brilliant, I blame the DRM they have around the mapping data, but that’s another subject…

Anyway, I want to upgrade the 7500 to the latest version of City Navigator North America NT, the 2009 update. To unlock the maps, you have to have a registered device. During Garmins update to my.garmin.com my previously registered 7500 disappeared. Now, when I try to register it again my.garmin.com rejects my serial number.

I’ve been extremely happy with Garmin support through the years, in fact they managed to next day me a replacement mapping CDROM when I was out of the country, starting trans-Sahara trip, to replace a damaged disk. They have been pretty responsive so far with my registration problem, until I received this today (the issue had been passed to their IT department)

We have contacted our IT department and requested another update. To answer your questions:

  1. It has been sent to IT and they are working on it.
  2. We can't escalate it.
  3. I cannot guarantee that it will be fixed by then

We have stressed the importance of getting this matter resolved and I am hopeful that we can get this matter resolved quickly. Thank you for your patience in this matter.

As this issue has been outstanding for 3 weeks, I’d love to know what the “IT Department” are doing. The very phrase makes my blood run cold, and I’m in IT guy! Some transparency would be greatly appreciated.

Ideally, I’d like to know what IT have done in the 2 weeks since they received this ticket from their support guys, what they are planning to do and why they can’t escalate it.

Remember, all I want to do is give them about $100 for new maps. All I need is a valid serial number.

I hope I don’t have to start buying and recommending other brands if they can’t resolve this. If anyone from Garmin feels like helping, the case number is┬áKMM12787676I15977L0KM. Thanks!