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Support Policies

TSD Support Policy FAQs                                                                           
Q: What changes are taking place?

A: In brief, customers will now be required to pay for access to Symmetricom Technical Support. They will also be required to pay for certain firmware releases associated with specific hardware platforms.

 

Q: How are existing contractual arrangements affected by these new policies?

A: Symmetricom will continue to honor all support agreements currently in place.

 

Q: When do these changes take effect?

A: September 28, 2009.

 

Q: Why are these changes being implemented?

A: These changes will align Symmetricom with accepted industry practice, and will help defray the expense of providing these services to our customers.

 

Q: Which products are associated with these changes?

A: This affects the manner in which TSD products are supported. These changes do not affect the manner in which TTM products are currently supported.

 

Q: What if a customer calls into Symmetricom Technical Support but doesn’t have a support agreement in place?

A: After the Symmetricom Technical Support engineer confirms that a support agreement is not in place, the customer will be redirected to the appropriate Sales contact for an opportunity to purchase support for their products.

 

Q: What will customers encounter when dialing into the support hotline, once Symmetricom starts billing for this service?

A: The caller will be asked a series of questions, which is in effect a decision-tree. For example: Is it an emergency (network down) situation? What product are they calling about? When was it purchased? Are they currently under contract? Based on answers to these and other questions (and also based on database information available to the technical support engineer) Symmetricom will either take the call and proceed as usual in opening a trouble ticket (or answering a question), or the caller will be referred to Sales for establishing a support agreement. The automated answering system may still be encountered; efforts are underway to minimize wait time and to expedite contact with a live technical support engineer.

 

Q: Are there any exceptions?

A: If the customer is experiencing an emergency situation, such as a ‘network down’ situation, an exception will be granted. The customer, however, may still be invoiced after the trouble ticket is resolved for support services rendered. Symmetricom Technical Support engineers will be trained on what comprises an exception or emergency situation.

 

Q: What exactly is meant by “support agreement”?

A: Large, direct customers typically have support agreements as part of their contract with Symmetricom. These contracts cover things such as warranty, spares, technical support, firmware releases, etc. But “support agreement” also refers to one of the new support bundles available on the recently updated SGS price list. Customers, for example, can purchase a multi-year bundle that provides for Symmetricom Technical Support, Firmware upgrades, and Extended Warranty coverage. By purchasing one of these new bundle part numbers, the customer is considered to have a “support agreement” in place.

 

Q: Will customers have to pay for access to ExpertOne, the new partner portal, and other websites?

A: ExpertOne is primarily targeted at partners and contains documentation such as product manuals, datasheets, etc. Customers will not need to pay to have access to ExpertOne, although they will need a login and password. However, Symmetricom does maintain a separate support website containing, among other items, new firmware loads. Customers will need a support agreement to have access to this separate support website.

 

Q: What are some of the details surrounding the Firmware Support aspect of the new Extended Warranty bundle? 

A: The new Firmware Support policy affects TSD hardware platforms such as SSU-2000, TimeHub, TimeProvider, etc and not software platforms such as TimePictra. Software is covered separately under Software Maintenance Agreements. The exact list of hardware platform releases affected is available and posted separately. Customers must have a support agreement to get access to future new Firmware releases not deemed bug fix releases.

 

Q: What about Firmware that fixes bugs? 

A: Bug fix releases will remain available and free of charge.

 

Q:  What about Customers that require Firmware revision control?

A: This primarily affects modules returned for repair. Under prior mutual agreement, customers should be able to receive an earlier firmware revision loaded onto the repaired unit/module. It is noted however that some new hardware spins may not support older Firmware.

 

Q: What if a customer calls into Symmetricom Technical Support with a question or issue regarding an MD’d product?

A: If the product has not gone End-of-Life (EOL), which by definition implies that all support activity has been halted, then Symmetricom Technical Support will proceed with assisting the customer provided that a support agreement has been purchased.

 

Q: If a customer calls into Symmetricom Technical Support and has not purchased a support agreement, but is having problems with a recently purchased product that is under warranty, what will happen?

A: The technical support engineer will ask a series of questions to determine the nature of the problem. Limited support will be provided to rectify an issue that is confirmed to be covered under the terms of the warranty. Ancillary support not related to warranty coverage will require a support agreement.

 

Q: Will 24x7x365 access be provided?
A: 24x7 access will continue to be provided for customers experiencing an emergency situation. Non-emergency inquiries will be handled during normal business hours, which currently are 7:00am – 5:00pm Pacific Daylight Time in North America and 8:00am – 5:00pm Central Time in Europe.
 
 
 
 
 
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