Taking advantage of the current discontent expressed by many consumers over the state of EWs (extended warranties) on electrical goods, Coventry-based Easy PC Support today launched its universal extended warranty, which provides cover for any make of Windows-based PC.

The Competition Commission, which is due to reach a decision on the value of EWs in September, released a set of hypothetical remedies last month, creating more stringent, open practices for the sale of warranties. The new rules could force retailers to inform customers about the EWs provided by competitors, including manufacturers, insurance companies and service providers.

Easy PC Support's EW gives customers national cover for onsite repairs for any make of Windows PC as well as laptop cover, local rate telephone support. Unlike traditional EWs, customers are not tied in for a set period of time, instead they are free to renew the service each month, for a fee of £9.99 plus VAT (£11.74 in total).

"Change is inevitable in such a highly charged and competitive consumer market. Over priced poor quality products will become a thing of the past, as consumers demand more choice," said Hamish Kirkland, director at Easy PC Support.

"The traditional two, three, four and five year EW schemes that tie the consumer in with total payment upfront are simply unrealistic now. They offer mediocre service and little or no protection should the retailer collapse," he added.

A rash of similar offerings is likely to be announced over the coming months.

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