Shopping online for cellphone accessories

I misplaced the headset for my cell phone.  Since I listen to FM during the drive to office, I started missing it.  I tried to use the free headphone that Kingfisher provided in their flight (yeah, those were the days of free headphones and pens), but the quality of the headphone was so bad that I could hear the traffic more and music less.

Since I had bought my cell phone through internet (ebay to be precise), I decided that I should purchase a headset through internet as well.  I did some research on the Net, did a cost-benefit analysis and decided on an ebay model.  This cost Rs.245/- including shipping and seemed compatibility with my phone (essentially had a 3.5mm jack).

I ordered the item through ebay and received the shipment promptly in two days.  The headset was there alright and did have a 3.l5mm jack.  The only hitch was, the headphone and the microphone were separate and connected through the 3.5mm jack. The resultant equipment connected to the phone through a connector, incompatible with my phone.  I relooked at the ebay ad and realized the gaps in the information provided therein.

What we need to understand here is, ebay just provided a mechanism for sellers to interface with the buyers.  It was not responsible for the completeness (or lack of) of information provided. 

I reached out to the seller, who promptly agreed to refund the amount.  I had to incur a Rs.60/- shipping cost though.

Did I learn from my mistake?  Not really!  I now looked at Flipkart, which I thought had a better customer service and more importantly, owned the equipments it sold.

After a painstaking search for headsets compatible with my phone model, I narrowed down on a Nokia model, which matched the price I was willing to pay. (I would have chosen a Samsung model, but it was out of stock). Again the online purchase was a breeze and the headset arrived in two days.

This one went into my phone with no trouble.  But... there is always a "but".  I could barely hear the FM.  The audio quality of the mp3 player (which played the music from the memory card) was very good though.  And finally, it did not support the provision to take a call or terminate using the button in the headset, which it was supposed to.

I called Flipkart, who said that it was a compatibility issue and that I should have ordered the correct model based on my phone.  I could swear that it was their website which gave me this match and I had double-checked thanks to my ebay experience. But then I had no proof!  I searched Flipkart again and amazingly, this model did not show up in the list of supported models for my phone!

To their credit, Flipkart agreed to give me what is called a store credit, which essentially credited the amount to my account with Flipkart, to be used against future purchases.  In addition, they also agreed to pick up the shipment themselves, rather than have me courier them.

Around this time, I decided to redeem my credit card points.  We narrowed in on an iPod, since we did not have any i-equipment (Apple gadget, to be precise).  This came with a headphone and would you believe it - it not only was compatible with my phone, but also came with an audio clarity that I think the original headset lacked.

Since I do not make or take calls while driving, I could compromise on the absence of microphone. 

So the next time you see me with a white headphone connected to a black cellphone, you know what I went through...


  1. hi its really an interesting blog. thanks for sharing such a detailed keep up posting some more reviews.

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