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Teradek Service Warranty Extension - Open letter


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#1 Jameson Johnson

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Posted 08 December 2014 - 10:49 PM

I just received the email about the new service extension offered by Teradek. To be honest, this makes me really question whether to buy another product from Teradek. I'll explain.

 
For a seemingly significant amount of money, I get to extend a warranty that covers only defects for 2 years - even though the email and the tagline on the sales page says "last a lifetime." 1 or 2 years, in fact, not a lifetime.
 
Moreover - this "offer" to cover only maufacturer defects, not accidental damage makes me question whether Teradek will actually stand by it's products. If it is in fact a "defect," as the manufacturer you should repair or fix the problem at no cost to the customer. That's what a good customer oriented company that wants to develop a long lasting, loyal customer would do.
 
And to make a "limited time offer" to extend a defect only coverage at a price makes me think that Teradek has discovered a potential defect and is hedging against future returns, rather than deal with the problem before a project or client relationship is compromised. Why else would I be asked to pay extra for a 2-year "lifetime" defect support warranty? 
 
In short - stand by your products, and don't try to sell me on expensive coverage for a manufacturer defect! 
 
Regards,
 
Jameson Johnson

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#2 Jess Haas SOC

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Posted 09 December 2014 - 01:06 AM

While I agree the extended warranty sounds like BS their reputation for service and standing by their product so far has been really good. When they found a defect in early units that very few people would ever notice but could impact range and performance they offered a free fix for existing units. Sadly there are a lot of companies out there that would not have done that. They have also provided new features through free firmware updates instead of just saving them for new models. They seem like a standup company to me. They are owned by vitec group which owns other companies people trust such as Anton Bauer but being part of a big company I wouldn't be surprised if this is more of a corporate thing from up top in order to make some extra money.

 

~Jess


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#3 Jameson Johnson

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Posted 09 December 2014 - 01:34 AM

I agree with your assessment. I like Teradek, I like the product, and that's why I bought a Bolt Pro in the first place. IMO, they had the best combination of tech and form for the price. I've also recommended and sold clients of mine on Teradek products. What I do see so often these days are companies that take the position that they are more important to the customer than the customer is to them. I would hate to see that happen to Teradek. They have indeed released new featured, firmware, etc. They currently have several products that I am looking at purchasing, and actively developing a market base for them.

 

Perhaps it is simply bad marketing or communication on their part on this one. And perhaps I did not give enough credit. Mike Gailing has been extremely involved in this forum alone, addressing issues publicly and head on. He represents the kind of service and support I expect from a company. This kind of service and the product experience I have had is why I would put my name behind Teradek as well. 

 

That said, we operate in an industry made up of small businesses and entrepreneurs looking to do their best in life. I do get very defensive of this group (small business) when I feel like an entity is trying to take advantage. Inwardly, if I endorse a product/company to my clients and then feel as through things may turn, it would reflect poorly on my business as well. I hope that I am wrong in this assessment, and wish them success. I intend to be a loyal customer of Teradek myself.


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#4 Shawn Wang

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Posted 09 December 2014 - 04:03 AM

 last time I sent a defect back, and said please repair and I need to order a new cable

 

they sent me back the unit, and sent cable seperately and let me pay that shipping for the cable. 

 

I still don't understand it till this day. why didn't you put in the same box, a cable weights nothing !   

 

 

Their customer service is great, but the communications in between departments is really bad. 


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#5 Alan Rencher

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Posted 09 December 2014 - 11:13 AM

Their PR department needs to do something because this is what this promotion looks like from the outside: I guess this is Teradek's way of issuing a recall: don't tell the customer what the defect is, but if you are experiencing an "isolated" problem, you can sign up for their temporary amnesty program.
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#6 Mike Gailing

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Posted 09 December 2014 - 12:21 PM

Jameson,

 

Im sorry that you were offended by our extended warranty offer. Obviously the intention was not meant to upset our customers or lead them to believe something was “wrong” with our products. Thats just plain conspiracy and couldn’t be farther from the truth.

 

We have always offered extended warranties, at least for as long as I have worked here. The standard Teradek policy when a product is purchased new is 1 year of coverage against manufacturer defects and the like. This is in line with most (if not all) companies in our space and many within the industry at large. However, this has never stopped us from going above and beyond for our customers. Just as Jess pointed out last night, we recalled and upgraded every single original Bolt Pro shipped between a certain time in 2013 just to make sure our customers had products that were built to the highest quality. Even beyond that program, we have constantly worked to ensure our products are free from defects and that if someone did run into a problem, we would do whatever we could to get things fixed quickly.

 

So why bother with the extra warranty? This is something we offer for peace of mind. I own a Subaru, arguably one of the most reliable cars out there, and yet I bought the extended warranty. Why? Although I have very little doubt I will run into any problems with my vehicle, I like knowing that if for whatever reason something does happen (and it has happened to me with a VW), I will be covered. For the price, I’m happy to know I won’t be out even more money should something random occur. More importantly, this warranty is also being offered to those who bought their units used, even if they were from eBay or Craigslist. Most companies refuse warranty work unless the product was purchased from an authorized reseller - this program allows others to protect their investment, despite not knowing how their previous owners treated the gear.

 

Even if you do not buy the warranty, we will still do our utmost to make sure our customers are being taken care of. Warranty work is prioritized here so that extended warranty is going to give you a quicker turnaround time and access to upgraded product should we no longer have parts for your device (a good example would be some of our legacy encoders where the chips/boards are no longer manufactured).

 

We take great pride in our products and what is being accomplished with them by the likes of all of you. Myself and a number of others here spend a lot of time reading this forum, drooling over instagram posts, and doing whatever we can to catch a glimpse of all the cool places you've taken our gear. Our customers are an extension of the Teradek family and we aim to treat them as such.

 

So let me reiterate this once more: there is no recall, no secret problem, no amnesty program, no Vitec-led money grab. All this is is an option for peace of mind. Nothing more. 

 

Of course, if any of you have an issue, you’re more than welcome to speak to me directly so we can work something out. We’re invested in all of you and this company would not be who we are today without your support and guidance in our product development.

 

Mike


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#7 Jameson Johnson

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Posted 10 December 2014 - 04:57 PM

Mike - thank you for the response. As I stated above, I appreciate how involved you are in this forum and with your customers in general. You reflect well upon the company. I will not be a customer of the extended service plan, and I think the initial advertising is misleading - in general, extended warranties cause me to question products. However, I do appreciate the willingness to help customers and plan to continue being a Teradek customer.


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#8 Lawrence Karman

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Posted 11 December 2014 - 09:02 AM

Mike - thank you for the response. As I stated above, I appreciate how involved you are in this forum and with your customers in general. You reflect well upon the company. I will not be a customer of the extended service plan, and I think the initial advertising is misleading - in general, extended warranties cause me to question products. However, I do appreciate the willingness to help customers and plan to continue being a Teradek customer.

 

You are complaining because the company is offering a warranty extension? Come on, man. Arri offers a warranty extension for the Alexa after 1 year. It cost $5000 and is only for 1 year! Just stop.


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#9 Walter F. Rodriguez

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Posted 12 December 2014 - 07:04 AM

I have only received excellent service from Teradek. I have owned the Bolt Pro SDI since day one because I pre ordered. I recently added a second receiver. Now considering buying the Teradek 2000.
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