Printer warranty stoush

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Kyocera Mita MD David Finn has hit out at competitors Samsung and Fuji-Xerox, claiming recent advertising by these vendors relating to printer warranties had been false and misleading to consumers.

Finn said advertisements over the past few weeks from Samsung and Xerox had “been less than ethical.”

He claimed Xerox advertised its Phaser range with a lifetime warranty without indicating the machine's average page print life. “We have a similar product on offer with a two-year on site warranty capped at 300,000 pages and at no cost. They [Xerox] charge for it. They're making out that they're doing [consumers] a huge favour,” said Finn.

Fuji-Xerox's national marketing manager Clare Tipler, hit back of Finn's comments saying the company has made it clear on every ad what is covered under the lifetime warranty.

The company is charging $699 for the warranty and Tipler claimed the end user can have “peace of mind” for a lot less [money]. She said that some three year warranties can generally cost $2000 to $3000. “They [consumers] are snapping it up - we are getting a 60 to 70 percent connect rate [from the ads],” Tipler said.

She defended Fuji-Xerox's lifetime warranty ad campaign, saying there are links from the display ad to the company's website where the average life of the Phaser printers are specified.

“All of our printers are sold through the channel and our channel partners are making the sale in an informed manner,” Tipler said.

Fuji-Xerox's marketing and communications manager Ben Gardem, added that the company does not specify a print life because it's unlimited. “The customer could have it [the printer] for 15 years and we would have to support it,” he said.

Kyocera's Finn also said Samsung was incorrect in recent advertising where it claimed it was the only laser printer manufacturer with a three year warranty as standard. “We've been doing that for the last four years,” Finn claimed.

After Kyocer sent a letter through its lawyers to Samsung, the issue has since been resolved and the vendor has changed its ad to specify that its original claim only related to its ML1450 14ppm printer. Samsung's national sales manager Norman Krieke defended Samsung's position saying that Samsung is the only manufacturer that offered a three-year warranty on the machine as standard.

He said while Kyocera does offer a three-year warranty, it's an optional upgrade at a cost to the consumer.

Finn hit back at Krieke's comments saying that Kyocera's equivalent machine, the 14ppm FS1010 had a free three-year return to base warranty and the customer pays $90 for an on-site warranty.

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