I purchased a Kodak V603 camera in June of 2006 for my girlfriends birthday present. The purchase price was over $200 at that time. The camera worked great for almost a full year, and then stopped turning on. The camera would not power up, regardless of any troubleshooting Kodak attempted to assist us with. At this time, we were instructed to pack up the camera and send it to their authorized repair shop "United Camera and Bionocular repair" in Bensenville Illinois. I located our purchase receipt from Curcuit City, and packed it up with the letter as instructed and sent the camera to them on June 18th 2007 with the repair order from Kodak.
On friday June 22nd 2007, I recieved an email from United Camera Repair stating that they would not fix the camera due to the warranty being voided from "impact damage". They explained the location of the "knick" on the case. I couldn't believe it. I know for a fact that this camera has never been dropped, nor neglected. The painted black case of the camera has lots of scratches and wear marks on the corners from normal use over the course of a year. At one location on the side of the camera, the case has a small 1 mm indentation at the hard corner. Im talking, you really have to look for it to see it. Based on its location on the case, it would be impossible for it to get this precise and miniscule gouge from a fall.
I immediatly called United Camera Repair, where they stated that they had a final say in the validity of the warranty, and that they deemed it an impact damage and that they would not fix it under Kodaks warranty. They said they would negotiate the repair price from $145 as stated in the email to @ $120 to make the necessary repairs. Since this is nearly the same price of the camera now as it has depreciated, I told them to never mind and send it back to me.
I then followed up with a phone call to Kodak support, obviously located overseas, where again I was told that United Camera has a final say since they are the authorized repair center.
I would be willing to bet very good money that United Cameras warranty repairs are performed for Kodak at a very reduced price to what they recieve for private sector repairs due to the volume of cameras Kodak has shipped to them. It would seem like a pretty lucrative business plan to get in bed with Kodak, be an authorized repair center, and when the cameras come in, invalidate the warranty in an attempt to make additional monies. This is nearly a scam.
Beyond this point, I find it hard to believe that Kodak truely doesn't stand behind their product in any fashion. The warranty is pointless. They allow an outside company, a third party entity, evaluate repair and ship their product in direct relation to the customer. Wow. Kodak, great job at washing your hands of any liability for the product you sell and pawning your customer service and warranty operations off to somebody else to do your dirty work. Its pretty apparent that the customers don't matter to Kodak, as they allow third party entities to sell, service, and deal with their customer service operations while Kodak hides behind their bottom line.
This is the first and last Kodak product I buy, and I welcome all those who are in the market for, or have had experiences with Kodak products to evaluate or comment the validity of their warranty.
Thanks for taking the time to read this.