Note: I am not in ANY way affiliated with IBM or Lenovo. This is a purely, satisfied customer.
Pretty much everyone has written about their frustration with customer service X or company Y. I'm here to tell a different tale, about how a company did things RIGHT.
It started off a few months ago when I had diagnosed that my ATI video card was having problems on my Thinkpad T400 and needed to be replaced. Since this computer has two video cards that you can switch between (one for battery life, one for power), I was able to just use the other video card. I didn't feel like being without my computer, so rather than get it fixed, I just held off and only used the integrated card. This means I lost dual-monitor support, but I wasn't dead in the water.
I finally decided the time was right to send it in, so I called up the technical support number. I was on hold for less than five minutes. After giving the typical info, I described in a few sentences what was wrong, including what I did to troubleshoot and diagnose the problem. At this point I was ready for the guy on the other end to start his laundry list of things that they need to check.
"Disconnect all external devices..."
"Let's try restarting the computer..."
"Let's reinstall Windows..."
I've had screens burn out and would need to go through this list of steps before they would allow me to send it in for hardware repairs. Especially since I'm not a business user, it just seemed like other companies paid no special attention to keeping this process simple.
IBM did it right. The person listened to me, instantly recognized that I knew what I was talking about, and first checked to see if he could just send me the replacement card that I could reinstall (with no harm to my existing warranty). Turns out that wasn't an option, but he did immediately determine that the computer needed hardware repair, and started the process of getting my info for where to ship the box. No fuss about checking for software issues, I already did that, I know what needs to be done; let's just do this. It was wonderful.
That was on Sunday night. The box arrived on Tuesday Afternoon, which I promptly sent out. It's now Friday, 10am, and my computer is back with the problem fixed.
No doubt, next PC will be a Thinkpad.