Everyones Favourite Store!!

  Sibbo 20:19 17 Oct 2004

My niece (who knows nothing about PC's) wanted a PC and went to PC World to buy their recently TV advertised Pentium 4 £799 offer (without me, which had been the original plan). She was told by the salesman that they had sold out of this model and was sold an alternative which the salesman claimed was identical except for the fact that it didn't have a wireless mouse and keyboard and a few other minor things. She (and her boyfriend) had explained that their computer knowledge was zero but stated that they wanted a PC that could be used for gaming, internet, music, and watching TV etc. I've been to look at the PC because they have been having problems with it, and it turns out that the PC that they have only has a Celeron processor fitted, and is slow at boot up and opening applications. The salesman has ensured that they spent their £800 by bundling other items with it such as a games pack that clearly stated that the minimum spec' required is a Pentium 3 CPU and the recommended spec' is a Pentium 4 CPU! I know that technology has moved on, but I have always believed from what I have read that a Celeron is a budget CPU and cannot be compared to a Pentium chip. Am I correct in saying that this is still the case? The salesman has also bundled a package that includes McAfee Internet Security 6, a packet of CDR's (£3-99p)and a Belkin 4 socket surge protector kit (£14-99p)even though their PC only has two plugs and so the sockets are not required as such. The PC also has Norton Internet Security 2004 pre-installed so in my opinion, the McAfee software (£49-99p) was not required. My last query is regarding the Hot fixes that you can download via Windows Update. Their "new" PC shows that there have been many installed onto the PC already even though they have not connected it to the Internet yet. In my experience, these are not shown in Control Panel/Add/remove Programs until you do download them. Surely the PC should show that it only has Windows XP OS installed including SP1 and not the hot fixes? I believe the PC is a HP, do these usually ship with all the hot fixes applied? It is my belief that they have been mis-sold the PC that they now have. Can they legally return it as it is not fit for the purpose that they bought it for.Thanks for any responses in advance.

  spuds 20:45 17 Oct 2004

Your [their] rights click here

If they made it quite clear as to their requirements, ie "The televised pentium 4 £799.00 offer", and the sales assistant sold them something that doe's not compare to that, then I would think that they have a claim against the sales assistant and PC World. Selling a fist full of add-on's, bundled software and duplicated 'anti's' doesn't sound very customer friendly like. Before any further delays [time is the essence, for a quick resolution], I would seriously consider further actions that may need answers, especially on the substituted computer and its comparison to the model requested.

There is bound to be someone who will have the answer of the two computer specifications, and their advice will be paramount on the decision of a possible returns.Sorry that I cannot be more helpfull.

  Forum Editor 20:47 17 Oct 2004

If it was within the last 7 days they can return it without giving a reason.

  Sibbo 20:53 17 Oct 2004

They bought it at yesterday, and finished setting it up at 2am this morning (Sunday)

  wee eddie 21:08 17 Oct 2004

If the original was advertised as suitable for games. This is obviously not.

The installation of Hot Fixes suggests that it might have been pre owned.

The Salesman sold Games that would not run on the machine. "Mis-Sold". Also an AntiVirus when there was already one installed. Fast Practise.

As FE said. Take some time off work and return it. Toute Suite.

  wee eddie 21:10 17 Oct 2004

Do not bother with the angry bit it gets no-one any where.

  Sibbo 21:19 17 Oct 2004

So it can be returned even though it's been opened and set up?

  spuds 10:29 18 Oct 2004

I have just had a word with my friendly neighbourhood trading standards officer, and here's what he as suggested.The 7 day rule only applies under the Consumer Protection [Distance Selling]Regulations 2000.It doe's not apply if a face to face in-store sale was conducted.Your niece may have a claim under the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982.But this would depend on what was requested and what was sold.Her boyfriend will be regarded as a witness, as would any other person involved in the actual sale.The salesperson divertion sales suggestion/recommendations would be a factor under the above 1982 Act.

The TS officer as suggested the following course of action,if your niece wishes to return the computer and additional items due to the fact that she was sold something that she had not requested due to lack of knowledge, and was reliant on the salesperson expert advice.Phone or at best visit the PC World store that the purchase was made and request the duty manager. Explain the situation as your niece thinks correct, including [if possible]the duplication of software and computer specification comparison [her original intention was to obtain the perhaps 'better product' of the well advertised TV promotion].If the manager refuses to replace,refund or exchange the goods, then obtain his/her reasons. Write a letter to PCW head office, sending copies to the store manager and the credit card company or finance house. If she paid by cash then things will become more complicated.If the original witness can be present in any future discussions, then that would strengthen the case.Best to have third party witness's in dealings of this kind.

Hope the above helps,and the matter is soon resolved. As a further suggestion, perhaps you or your niece could check either on-line or via phone sales, and see if the stated advertised offer is still available.

  Sibbo 10:50 18 Oct 2004

Thanks for the feedback everyone, I'll let my niece know. I'm still interested in other peoples views/experiences so I'll leave the thread open for a while.

  davidg_richmond 18:53 18 Oct 2004

'The installation of Hot Fixes suggests that it might have been pre owned.

The Salesman sold Games that would not run on the machine. "Mis-Sold". Also an AntiVirus when there was already one installed. Fast Practise.'

Wee Eddie, you are a little misinformed. The hot fixes are applied to the Windows set up before shipping from the factory, and it is becoming more common for other manufacturers to supply a hot fix cd separately too in response to the regular batch of fixes and history of problems related to OS's not being current when they reach the customer. It does not at all suggest that it is pre-owned.

Games that have a minimum spec of Pentium 3 will run fine on a Celeron, dependent on any graphics card requirements etc. The old Celerons had Pentium 3 cores and cache, the new ones have the same core but less cache as a Pentium 4.

The separate antivirus has a year's worth of updates included. The copy that came with the machine is OEM with 30-60 days at the most, leaving the user exposed after this.

Other than that, yes the PC was mis-sold as newer games will require a Pentium 4 to make the most of them.

  Sibbo 22:21 18 Oct 2004

My niece has contacted PC Worlds head office and passed on my concerns regarding the way they were sold the PC. She was told that they should not have been sold the PC and that they should take it back to the store as soon as possible where it will be replaced by the TV advertised model (Pentium 4), or given a credit note. I'll report back after they have returned the PC to the store to let you know if all went well.

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