Adobe’s shitty Flash ordering shit system = FAIL

I just tried to order an upgrade of Dreamweaver CS4 from Adobe’s absolutely rubbish online ordering system.

The problem with Adobe is that they absolutely insist on using their tools for their online services. When you want to order anything online with them, you have to learn their stupid interface.

I saw the PayPal icon as I got to the laborious rubbish checkout system.

“Brilliant, I don’t have to go and get my credit card.”

Yes, the fact that I don’t have to leave my desk and walk 10ft to get my credit card has lost MasterCard and Visa the business. PayPal wins because I know my username and password for that.

I click Check-Out.

And this is where the shite happens.

Adobe’s bollocks Flash system isn’t at all happy handling the PayPal hand-off. It’s fine when you’re dealing with their own internal systems 100%. I have managed to pay with a credit card before — enough to have given them a good few thousand pounds over the years.

I saw the system send me over to PayPal. I logged in and approved the transaction and we handed back to the Adobe ordering system.

Which played a nice little timer at me for a minute or so then told me there had ‘been a problem with my transaction’ (or words to that effect).


This is a billion dollar company screwing up right in front of me.

Couldn’t they have got it right?

I don’t care what the problem is. I need the transaction to be frictionless. If there’s an issue with the credit card (my bank(s) routinely have trouble if I use my card anywhere other than within 3 miles of my registered address) then tell me. Prompt me. Let me know what’s happened.

I logged back into PayPal and found that 168 quid has been taken from my account and is pending. It’s been sent to Adobe. But it’s pending. Whatever the hell that means.

Well that’s useless.

100% useless because it’s interrupted my day and I’m now staring at weeks worth of bollocks to resolve it.

Best case I might magically get an email tomorrow morning from a concerned Adobe customer services employee to say ‘sorry about that and your order has been processed’.

Worst case I have to phone people. And explain shit. And try and get through to somebody who cares.

And I can’t be bothered. I don’t have time — I didn’t ever make the time for Adobe. I’m the one PAYING them the sodding money.

What’s interesting in this situation is that if you think I’m an annoyed customer, wait ’til you start doing business with the next generation. You’re going to love them. If you think I’m particularly intolerant to your billing and ordering system screw-ups, wait until you start doing business with today’s 14 year olds. You simply won’t get their money or their attention if you deliver service in this manner.

It’s the next generation of truly mobile, truly connected folk — the ones growing up to *rely* on Google and mobile connectivity — that are going to hammer these sorts of ordering systems.

As for me, do you remember the Richard Branson maxim of [something link] ‘give somebody bad service and they tell 10 people’?

Well, hello 250,000 Mobile Industry Review readers.

May I suggest that, for your next Adobe order, you think very carefully about purchasing with a credit card? I made the mistake of trying to use something that I’d never tried.

I’ll give it 24 hours and then I’ll start with the sodding drudgery of phoning to find out about my order.

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

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