Buying "bargainCorner" from PC World

  Buachail Mór 00:35 19 Jan 2004

Someitmes PCworld have bargain corner PCs, printers etc with "sold as seen" on them. That does this mean in reality please? Do I have no rights if I buy one and there is a problem?

  Forum Editor 01:21 19 Jan 2004

has no force in law, and may be seen as an attempt to restrict or deny a consumer's rights. Courts have previously ruled that this phrase is illegal, and you have every right to expect the same redress in law if you buy something from the bargain corner as you would if you bought it off the shelf in the normal way - even though the 'sold as seen' notice is displayed.

If, on the other hand, an item (say a printer) is offered for sale at a reduced price with a notice saying "leads missing" or "software and manual missing" it would be perfectly legal. These statements would form part of the description of the goods, and your contract with a retailer would be deemed to have been based on your acceptance of the missing items. You couldn't subsequently insist that they be replaced, or reject the goods as faulty because of the missing items. You could however reject the goods if another fault was present.

Does that help?

  Buachail Mór 06:37 19 Jan 2004

Forum Editor - thank you very much for your clear explanation of the situation. It means that there are likely to be some good bargains up for grabs in PC World.

  Sir Radfordin 08:41 19 Jan 2004

It is worth remembering that the printers they sell in the bargain corner very rarely have the ink in them. To buy 'genuine' ink for the printer will nearly always cost as much as the discount they are giving, so it often works out cheaper to buy the new product and not something that has 'faults'.

  Stuartli 09:12 19 Jan 2004

The only time I have bought something at PC World (I'd been given a Dixons voucher as a present) was last year, when I came across the much praised Hercules Fortissimo 7.1 sound card on the clearance counter for £25, a reduction of almost half.

After some pondering, as the said PC World is 15 miles from my home and would mean a return journey if faulty, I decided to take the plunge.

Back home I installed the drivers from the CD-ROM, found a vacant slot for the card and rebooted.

To my surprise, I got a message stating: "A Hercules Fortissimo sound card is required"; after three further futile attempts failed, all bringing the same message, I gave up.

A week or two later I had to go past the PC World store again so I took the card back. I was immediately offered a full refund or the opportunity to look around and perhaps select another product.

I chose the refund and, as they say, made my excuses and left. But there was no quibble about taking the sound card back nor reinstating my voucher's cash value, so full credit to the staff of the Aintree, Liverpool store.

  spuds 17:20 19 Jan 2004

I always check the 'bargain corner' with the end result of a purchase at a 1in9 ratio.Always check any write ups on the item, and if you are not sure ask one of the staff.Recently I purchased some well known named pre-bundled software at very silly prices. But as mentioned by Sir Radfordin, watch things like printers.By the time you have added the missing items like ink cartridges,cables,driver sotware the bargain as long gone,and it would be far better to buy the brand new boxed equivilent.

  jagx400 08:27 04 Apr 2004

I went to pc world for a wireless router and the price was £112, the price in our local PC shop, Eclipse, was £64, quite a difference. so I tried a price match and the chap phoned Eclipse only to be told none was in stock so no price match. No way was I paying £50 over the odds (PC world please justify that over the top price). On the way out I spotted a Dlink 624 router for £76 in the bargain corner and as Eclipse could'nt promise a stock availability date I took PC World's offering. It has worked perfectly ever since, But how on earth do they justify that price difference

  Stuartli 08:59 04 Apr 2004

On a similar basis you could wonder why Jessops (normally pretty sharp on pricing) still asks £149.99, recently reduced from £189, for a Minolta Dimage E223 digital camera?

My mate bought one back in early February from ebuyer for £117.50 including VAT.....

  Forum Editor 09:44 04 Apr 2004

will have different pricing policies, based on their product 'mix'. That means that some companies will inevitably sell certain items at higher prices than others. They aren't all buying in at the same price, and they aren't all selling the same volumes - that's why it pays to shop around.

Just because one company may be more expensive than another for a certain item doesn't mean that you're being "ripped off". You may find another item that's cheaper from the second company - it's the way that the retail market works. Many years ago we had a different system in this country - called Retail Price Maintenance, whereby manufacturers dictated the selling price of their products in order to maintain and control their margins. Big shops with volumne sales had an advantage over smaller ones in that they could buy goods cheaper from the makers, yet still charge the same selling price as the smaller shops. It was ultimately felt that this sytem worked against fair competition - and therefore the consumer - so it was abolished in favour of a free competition system, whereby shops may charge whatever they like for goods.

There were still a few 'legacy' exceptions to the general rule that shops could charge whatever price they chose for goods. There was the infamous Net Book Agreement (which prevented booksellers charging less than the publisher's price) and some pharmaceutical products.

  edstowe 16:32 04 Apr 2004

If you want to see just how much prices vary for the same article, have a look at something like Pricerunner click here You will see some amazing variability between one supplier and another for the same item.


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