Fake products are copies of original products and are used to make money by selling the cheaper versions for a very high price. Most of the time people buying fakes are unaware of buying a fake. Those who produce fake products have fraudulent intentions of producing such products. Fake products cut across all consumer goods. China is said to be credited to be the brains behind the manufacturing of most fake products(please do not blame china, you get what you paid for. We should also remember that apple iPhone and iPad are mad in china but assembled in California) Therefore, china is not the problem. The problem is the dealers who go to china to ask their engineers to produce sub-standard or fake products for them.
It does not matter they specifications the television is having, as long as it is a flat screen branded tv, it is susceptible to fake copies. In this article, Africans(especially Nigerian will be able to learn how to avoid falling victim of counterfeiters. This shall be strictly about how to avoid buying a fake tv, however, the tips that shall be provided here can be applied to every electronic device.
HOW TO DETECT FAKE TELEVISIONS AND DIFFERENTIATE TEHM FROM THE ORIGINAL
Almost 650% of the electronics in Nigeria and other developing countries are fake, copy, china manufactured or smuggled which results in billions of dollars of loss to the government of the respective countries. I wonder why the Government are always slow to taking any action against these people whatsoever. But again this is not the total fault of seller or government as we buyers must have to first investigate the product before buying it. So today we will try to find the ways through which we can detect whether the product i.e Sony, Samsung, Vizio, Hisense, Panasonic, LG TV’s are original or not. I will categorise these into two viz; 1. what you need to do before purchase and 2. what you need to do at the point of purchase
What to do to avoid fake before you even go to the stores or online
- If you are buying the television online, please buy it directly from the manufacturer’s website or from a reputable online store like amazon.com. If you are not conversant with that particular tv, please do not buy from sites like alixpress.com or eBay. On amazon, you can read the reviews of other who are already using the product and even if you end up getting a fake or defective product on amazon, be rest assured that you will receive your full refund. To avoid buying any inferior product on amazon or similar reputable sites, read critical reviews and buy from only the sellers with high ratings.
- If you prefer buying your stuff in the shops, before you go for your purchase, please do the followings
- Locate someone who is currently using the exact type of tv you want to buy and familiarise yourself with its features
- Search for the hands-on video of that TV on youtube.com and watch it in case you do not know anyone using it.
- Search for the official website of the manufacturers and see if they have provisions for how to detect a fake copy of their product. Most manufacturers have this.
- Be familiar with the accessories before going to purchase it.
HOW TO DETECT A FAKE TV AT THE POINT OF PURCHASE IN THE STORES
Now let us assume you are ready to go to the stores to go and make your purchase. How do should you behave there? what should you have in your arsenal. Please flow with me as i provide some valuable tips:
- Buy your tv from only an authorised dealer: Always buy products from Authorize dealers mention on the official website
- Buy your tv from the official showrooms if it is available in your locality.
- Do not prove to be too smart or too forward: For the fact that you have knowledge of what you want to buy doesn’t mean you should play too smart. please be cool, calm and collected. the seller might be having both the original and fake and when you behaving calmly, his conscience may hunt him to give you the original and by implication, you would have saved yourself unnecessary stress. In my case, I will first ask the seller “please bring out only the original for me”
- If you have the privilege, go with a prior owner of that type of tv: I will always do this and give such a person a tip for his troubles if he is not a very close ally. An owner of the tv will know it better than you a prospective buyer.
- When the price is too cheap, please be suspicious: If you have done your research well, you will know when a tv price is ridiculously cheaper than expected. e.g if amazon says it is $850 and your local store tells you to pay 500usd, then you should know that all is not well(unless there is a global promo on that product)
- Too many features: The biggest sign of fake or copy products is that they offer too many features in very less price. It’s nearly impossible for big companies to provide so many features in less price so whenever you see TV with so many extra features than it must be a china copy.
- Know the customer care hotline of the OEM: You can call the customer care before you make payment and give them the serial ny=umber to confirm if it is a genuine one.Thirdly, the packaging box must carry the OEM’s toll free contact number, service center address and the brand logo. Samsung Toll-free number is 0800-72678
- Check serial number online
- There must be a warranty card with loads of details on how to claim your warranty: Warranty card with Hologram and serial number printed on the back of the LED TV makes sure that you are buying the original product and legally too. This also means that seller has imported this TV by paying custom duty which results in improving the economy of your country
- Most colourful and flashy boxes are indicative of a fake TV: First thing first and that is not to say that all LED TV with colour box packaging is fake.However, this is the biggest sign of fake product because all genuine products come in carton boxes with exact product information and serial number.
- Compare the serial number on the box with the ones written on the tv itself
- Make sure you look out for the consumer manual: fake televisions will not have a manual and the few that have will have one that is not comprehensive.
- Try and register the product via its serial number on the official website. once it is accepted, it is not a fake. If otherwise, then you know what that means.
The above tips cannot be tagged full proof, however, if followed judiciously, you can avoid falling victim of fake product in the region of 97%. It is also worthy of note that, if you are dealing with the authorized dealer of the television, you do not need to worry yourself on some of the tips above. Just get your receipt and keep your warranty card very carefully. No authorised seller will sell a tv without issuing you a warranty card. In Nigeria, the commonest fake tv in the market is LG and samsung TVs. In fact, we have more of fake LG tv than Samsung. My advice is for you to go to LG or Samsung showroom for your purchase.