HP South Africa urges buyer beware over product support

Von Sean Bacher

Last week HP SA issued an advisory stating that customers should be aware that the company does not support the HP Pavilion range of products in South Africa. The advisory was published after certain Pavilion products were spotted at Hi-Fi Corporation.

?Pavilion products are not available in SA through HP?s official distribution network, and are not part of HP?s local product line. This highly complex machine requires very specific parts and components which are not available in SA through HP?s official distribution network,? the advisory says.

?The Pavilion range is great, do not get me wrong,? says Thibault Dousson, HP personal systems group (PSG) category country manager. ?However, due to the costs incurred in importing the machines into this country, and the fact that they use a completely different set of components, a decision was made by HP EMEA not to distribute them locally.?

The advisory is not only intended for customers about to purchase the Pavilion products, but also for users who have brought the products into SA from overseas.

Diane Bowran, CEO of Hi-Fi Corporation, says: ?We have had numerous enquiries about HP?s Pavilion range, and saw that there is in fact a huge demand for these products. We took it upon ourselves to import the systems and offer them to our customers.?

Bowran goes on to say that Hi-Fi Corporation offers Pavilion system buyers the same sort of warranty that it offers on all its other products. ?Consumers will be given a one-year warranty, and, should a Pavilion fail, we have a full technical service center with highly qualified technicians.? She adds that should a machine be irreparable, a replacement unit will be offered to the customer.

?We do not have a problem with Hi-Fi Corporation selling the products, in fact we are quite happy that it is able to offer them to the customer with a warranty. We just need customers to know that HP is not in a position to service the systems,? emphasizes Dousson.

He goes on to say that HP is in the process of setting up channels to make the machines available in SA, and hopes that this will be finalized by next year.