Sadly it is looking like the days of purchasing products and expecting them to last are getting behind us. In most cases these days it is simpler to discard your faulty item and buy a replacement, as the option of repair is usually a time consuming and costly procedure. Or it is, if your product is out of its manufacturer’s guarantee. We all know about the manufacturer’s guarantee but few of us make use of it on our less expensive tech products, and our expensive products always have a lifespan that outlives its warranty by about 18 seconds.
In 2009 I purchased a pair of Sennheiser CX150 earphones from HMV, £15 at the time. Nowadays, if I’d had these earphones for eight or nine months and they broke then I am of the generation that feels this is an acceptable lifespan of a product of this cost. The only reason I returned to HMV when my earphones did break is that the person selling me the earphones offered me HMV’s added insurance at £2 extra (they no longer offer this service to my knowledge). Their insurance worked in £1 insurance cost per each £10 value increase of the item sold. This gave me two years in which I could return my earphones and they would exchange them for a new pair, then offer me the same £2 service for the replacements if I wished to take it – which I did. I ended up replacing my earphones for the smallest of things like losing the rubber bit that goes in your ear and effectively spent a year and a half paying £2 for £15 earphones. I mustn’t have been the only person that did this as HMV stopped offering it, their wastage for less expensive tech must have been enormous!
The moral of that story is I am of the generation of waste, but it was also the thing that made me consider what warranty my tech then had. By standard manufacturers offer 12 months, and usually the store or online company selling you the item will offer their own separate warranty. I have worked in technical support in retail and can tell you that yes it is 100% worth taking out this extra cover, just shop around first because different stores offer you different length, and level of care. In my opinion there isn’t a better cover on offer for your new television than John Lewis’ 5 year cover as standard with the ‘John Lewis Guarantee’. And half a decade in the technological age is worth triple that time not so long ago. For their other tech, such as laptops, they offer a 2 year cover. Curry’s/PC World on the other hand offer their KnowHow team with new laptop purchases, this is only 12 months though. Plus, these levels of cover rarely cover accidental or water damage which are 9/10 the only reason my devices have failed me. This is care that some places offer, usually at a monthly insurance style cover than a set time. When it comes to that, services like ‘Protect my Bubble’ etc tend to offer you better and more flexible deals than the store themselves. No idea why, if it was me I’d want the return custom.
We all keep our receipts for bigger purchases (I hope!), it’s remembering where they are 10 months later when those dead pixels in your tele become too much. Have something in your home devoted to receipts because as annoying as it is to sieve through loads, it’s better knowing the one you need is definitely there. My final word, for tech and electronics in most stores you have 30 days in which you need no reason to return it despite what some stores will try and tell you. Happy shopping!
For peace of mind for all your tech possessions, always make sure you are covered under your house contents insurance. To compare the cheapest content insurance deals, try our comparison engine