Monday, November 2, 2009

Third party warranty damages your brand

I walked into the nearest Future Shop yesterday evening with my friends to purchase an Xbox 360 as a gift for our buddy. During the purchase, the sales guy started telling us about the horror stories he had "heard" with Microsoft and the "terrible hardware" Microsoft was putting out.

It should be known that I own an Xbox 360 and it did fail once before. Less than one week after sending my defective unit to Microsoft, I received a replacement. Their expedient service was stellar, as was the experience I've had with Apple and Dell products. However, the sales guy at Future Shop painted a very different story, one which included:

  1. When the warranty expires, Microsoft will charge me $100 dollars to fix a defective unit and charge me for shipping.
  2. If I choose not to fix it they will charge me to dispose of the device.
  3. The sales guy "heard" from his friends about people who have had nothing but grief when dealing with Microsoft.
  4. The sales guy stated he would "never trust any Microsoft product" without additional warranty coverage.

I think it's pretty obvious that this sales guy gets a commission for every warranty package he is capable of pushing onto customers. However, for the sales guy to spread lies and conjecture, thereby making the product sound utterly unreliable, what sort of confidence should I have with Microsoft?

A more valid question: If Future Shop is partnered with Microsoft, should FS employees be ruthlessly destroying their partner's reputation?

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