Amazon India gets flak for giving buyers coupons instead of cash for Yu Yureka price glitch

Last week Amazon has apologised for the wrong price getting reflected during the Micromax Yu Yureka sale. The company is now refunding users with coupons.

Last week Amazon has apologised for the wrong price being reflected during the Micromax Yu Yureka sale, which meant that some customers ended up buying the smartphone at Rs 12,499, instead of the original price of Rs 8,999.

The Yu Yureka smartphone by Micromax, which runs CyanogenMod OS, went on a flash sale on 13 January on and the company had put up around 10,000 units of the phone for sale. As is the case with most smartphone launches these days, the phone went out of stock in seconds, and the site was down briefly for some users.

However a lot of customers complained about how the price of the smartphone was hiked up during the sale and that they had to pay extra. Amazon later apologised for the error.

Now the company is refunding users who paid extra, but instead of cash Amazon is giving buyers coupons and vouchers to be used on the site.

According to a Facebook post by a user Ricky Kumar, Amazon is giving users a gift coupon worth Rs 3500. The gift coupon is redeemable on all products on the site, except Kindle eBooks and apps.  Naturally some users are upset and insisting they don't want coupons but their cash back.

But as far as Amazon is concerned, that would be a highly impossible demand to fulfil. Of course, in case of digital transactions, Amazon can ensure that the money is returned to the accounts, but gift coupon is actually the most hassle-free solution for Amazon.

Amazon India gets flak for giving buyers coupons instead of  cash for Yu Yureka price glitch

A screenshot of the picture that was shared.

Given that most transactions on such sites take place in the digital medium, which means a user is likely to enter a debit or credit card number to pay, it's not too much to expect Amazon to dole out cash to the each user for the price glitch. It also ensures that users aren't able to spend the money anywh

It still isn't known how many users got stuck paying extra for the Yu Yureka smartphone, something neither Micromax nor Amazon have commented on. As far as the sale is concerned, the price glitch wasn't the only controversial bit.

One user Abhay Rana had claimed on Twitter that the company had only put up 3,000 units of the phone and put out screenshots of the site's source code to bolster his claim. Micromax has denied the charge.

Rana wrote in this piece on the Next Big What, "there were only 3000 devices on sale today, out of which only 2657 were claimed, after which the sale was shut down."

Micromax and Amazon had said that over 300,000 people had registered for the Yu Yureka device, a fairly highly number given that only 10,000 units went on sale. It's also hard to expect that everyone in that registration would have turned up for the sale.

Interestingly this NDTV piece by Harpreet Singh gives a perspective on how the whole 3000 units controversy might have arisen in the first place. He points out that "if there was a single Lightning Deal for 10,000 units, the waiting list could have been really long too. Customers would end up waiting for several minutes, or probably as long as an hour before they could access the deal. So, it's likely that Amazon split the entire stock into multiple Lightning Deals." He says that this could have been the reason why Rana saw the 3,000 units number.

But as far as both Micromax and Amazon are concerned, the price glitch was definite let-down for users.

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