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HP Networking tweaks lifetime warranty policy

Alex Scroxton

HP Networking will not be extending lifetime warranties to the entire 3Com and H3C portfolio, with many core products receiving one to three year guarantees.

A document posted by HP Networking reveals that H3C's A Series and 3Com's E Series fixed-port switches have been migrated into the lifetime warranty programme.

However, modular switching kit is not covered, and neither is the V Series managed switching portfolio nor the TippingPoint S Series security appliances.

HP had long sold ProCurve's lifetime warranty policy as a key differentiator in a competitive market, and in many cases the perk dramatically lowered TCO among end-users.

But Rob Campbell, managing director at longstanding HP partner Kavanagh said it actually made little sense for HP to cover the entire line.

"The ProCurve kit is around the edge, which is where HP has done well. The acquisition of 3Com and H3C adds large, core switches, which is a different world," he explained.

According to Campbell, the constant changes, reconfigurations and updates needed at the core of the network, compared to the comparatively static edge, requires far higher levels of support from HP, leading to a scenario where it makes no sense to offer a lifetime warranty.

Softcat managing director Martin Hellawell said that while the ProCurve warranties were a nice differentiator to take into a sales pitch, he was "not losing much sleep" over it.

"There is a big cost to the warranties, and the trade off will be lower prices [on the 3Com lines]," he continued. "It will probably even out because either way you pay for it."

HP was not available for comment.


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