As with many things it's everybody's and nobody's fault. Partly due to the arrival of a whole new crowd of buyers with quite a different profile to the high-end watch market so far. Several issues should be addressed because of their faulty "schooling" regarding what they get for their money. Nothing wrong with newcomers, they are in a way responsible for the incredible boom the sector has experienced these last ten years. As customary the problem can be traced back to retailers or authorized distributors (not all though) that are more concerned in making money than giving a service and the manufacturers that do not enforce the issue of being adequately represented in these distributors. I don't blame since the main reason for starting a business is making money in the first place. The second have not demeaned to control the "method of selling" until recently. Some sales staff out there might have noticed by now that selling at any cost may come back and bite you in the butt. Anyway, back to our subject... amongst the new wave of buyers with a lot of burning cash in their pocket but with an inverse knowledge regarding "Haute Horlogerie" there is a recurring misconception. It generally is in their firm believe that the more expensive the watch the less prone to flaws, quality defects, faulty service, etc... WRONG!
In the laws of watchmaking this is quite the opposite. The more complex a watch, the more you can't use industrial machinery and need fine handwork. The less you can use automation, the longer it takes to make a watch. The more you use the human factor, the more things can go wrong. The more human factor involved, the higher the cost. In other words, the more exclusive, unique and expensive... the more imperfect, delicate and problematic. For most of us, no mater price or purchasing power, this is part of the charm in watches. I can assure anybody that the accuracy, homogeneity and reliability of a Seiko beats a Richard Mille hands down. However, if you could, which would you go for? I believe that it it is safe to say that everybody would make the "irrational" choice of getting the more expensive and way less reliable RM or FP Journe, before a Seiko or Timex. Why? Simple, it's a battle of egos and it never is about reliability. There is nothing wrong with that if you are aware of it.
I do understand however the concerns that buyers have to that respect. It is hard to grasp that you just spend over 100K on a watch that is less accurate than a 50 bucks Swatch. Plus there is the nuisance of sending your watch for service after two weeks. Furthermore, they tell you it will take over 4 months to fix. Plus, the worst part is the well popular stuck-up "take it or leave it..." attitude. The problem is created not from the moment after the watch is being sold but rather at the moment of the sale. It should be explained to the client that part of what makes this watch so special is a complete handmade process that renders the watch unique and that due to its complexity it is likely to go to service, etc... Unfortunately this is not so. The customer is likely to see dollar signs rolling in the eyes of the sales person instead of getting any sort of warning. No wonder that the customer gets hysterical spasms of anger and rage when returning the watch only after several months. Mind you, things were worse before. I remember not long ago when you had the feeling that they were doing you a favor when taking the watch for service. In many cases it was attempted to make the customer pay for repairs even if still under guarantee. To them you were nothing but an unworthy fool who just had no idea how to treat a watch. Believe me, the more prestigious the brand the more you got treated this way. There has been improvement in recent years to that respect. Thanks only to complaining customers though.
Don't kid yourselves, there is no such thing as the "best" or "perfect" watch. Just enjoy what you have and don't waste your time getting angry on little things. Believe me, only then will you enjoy this passion to the fullest.