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Is HP ripping us off?

Is HP ripping us off?

Is HP ripping us off?

I'm just curious if this is standard practice at HP, or if it's just specific to the country I'm in.

I've been doing consulting work for several different companies and within the last year I've seen three HP surestore tape drives go bad. What I find interesting is that every time I recommend that they get a quote from a HP service center to see how much it would cost to repair, they get EXACTLY the same quote which is usually half the price of purchasing a new unit. The quote does not specify that the head needs replacing, the drive motor is bad, the circuit board is bad, or the eject mechanism is malfunctioning, nothing! Just the price.

The common reaction from my clients is, "we might as well buy a new one". This is very good for HP but environmentally irresponsible. Consequentally you end up with thousands of nicely designed, heavy duty, almost like new boxes gathering dust in storage rooms all over the world that probably could be back in operation with the replacement of a single component but the service centers don't seem to have the time or inclination to fix.

Has anyone else noticed this?

RE: Is HP ripping us off?

HP just doesn't repair a customer's tape drive and send it back to them.  I don't know why, maybe they've discovered that it's too costly for them or something... I'm not sure.

If you have a defective HP tape drive and is still under warranty (3 years if it's SureStore, 2 years if it's OEM) they will gladly replace it with a refurbished unit.  The call centre techs will do their best to try and troubleshoot the drive before replacing it to ensure that it's not a SCSI or system configuration issue.

If you're out of warranty, you then have the option of exchanging your out of warranty unit for a refurbished unit, but will have to pay for it, and the refurbished unit that you receive will only have a 90-day warranty.  The refurb prices depend on the product, and yes I agree sometimes it would be a better option to just purchase a whole brand new unit.  This also gives you a good opportunity to assess your storage needs and determine if perhaps you might need to upgrade your current backup solution.

Refurb prices are not always half, if they are then it's probably a coincidence.
For a DAT24 internal tape drive in Canada, a refurb costs aproximately $521 ($278.40 USD) and a brand new unit costs $2,071 ($1,183.00 USD).

When you send in a defective unit, they are repaired and put back into circulation as a refurbished unit.  I guess HP just thinks that it's more important for customers to have a tape drive already on hand so that they continue to back up their data.  Imagine how your customers would feel if they had to be without their backup drive for 2 or 3 weeks while it's repaired... I don't think they'd be happy.  And it's probably just easier to send the customer out another refurbished unit then try to keep track of sending people "loaners" all the time.

BTW, if you want to check the warranty of a tape drive, you can do so online here instead of having to call in to a call centre all the time and have to wait in queue:  https://partsdirect.hp.com/ePDO/Warranty/View_Warranty_Verification.asp

RE: Is HP ripping us off?


The exchange program you speak of sounds like a great idea and I would definitely recommend it to my clients. The problem is, while this option is available in US and Canada, it is not available universally. I'm currently in Thailand and no such option exists.

I wounder why?

RE: Is HP ripping us off?


That's too bad.  The american's have it the easiest though, most of the time it's a next day exchange (as long as the product is in stock.)  Canadians have to provide some form of collateral though (either a credit card number or a PO number) which is the cost of a brand new unit.  (They'll put a hold on your credit card, but not charge it.)  Also, if you want next day, you have to pay an extra $85... or for 3-5 days it's free.  They should just have the same services available all over the globe... but I guess that's what you get with an American based company.

RE: Is HP ripping us off?

I have yet to see such a program in the US. Credit card exchange is always required and unless specifically stated in warranty instant exchange policy you may pay shipping costs. Sometimes the shipping cost makes it a better deal to buy new even though you may have warranty. Example is with monitors whose shipping runs $50 and up for slow shipping. Overnight might easily be $100. Check your facts.

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