Cheap chinese junk



#8

Are all hp calcs made in CHina now? I'd be curious to know how much cheaper are Chinese production costs compared to the US. They must be substantially lower if hp hopes to recover the additional expenses related to returned items, additional repairs under warranty, customer dissatisfaction and the irreparable damage to the firm's reputation.

DD


#9

Well, labor costs are very cheap in China - far cheaper than even Mexico. Lots of assembly labor there is essentially 'slave labor' - folks go unpaid, jobs are misrepresented as to hours/duties/wages, folks are held prisoner in factories (locked doors, managers hold employees' internal passports so they can't leave facility or town). Many of these firms are one step removed from the Chinese gov't or military and/or are run by favored cronies of the Politburo elite, not subject to prosecution for all but the grossest of crimes.

Even w/diminished quality, it seems to be the norm in the consumer electronics biz that the true mfgr "eats" warranty returns & some associated costs. It's the dirty little secret in the consumer elec. industry that 25+% items (other than TVs and stereos, which ordinary folks seem to be able to use without skills) are returned to seller. Oftentimes this is not due to any real defect/product problem but due to incompatibility w/platform or user skill in installing devices (for example, PC peripherals) or confusing usage due to poor user interfaces & firmware (VCRs, camcorders, etc.) Often, when you buy a 'refurbed' item there may be NOTHING wrong with it other than the customer couldn't figure out the logic of the product; the product is just reboxed/resealed and new paperwork is thrown in. Can't be sold as new (except at Fry's ;)

Many Chinese electronic firms operate on time value of money "float" for their profits: they get money upfront to build a widget, chip, etc. The work is done at cost, but the profit is gained on the float. Risky, and they are willing to live w/the small margins. (Many do go broke.)

In general, I don't know why we do business with Red China.
I'd pay triple to avoid them. It is an avowed enemy state. I don't doubt we'll have a war with them in the next 50 years - maybe sooner if they try to take Taiwan. I try to avoid buying ANYTHING originating from there (sometimes difficult, but actually possible). Given such low labor costs, every dollar spent in Red China adds a significant kick to their internal oppression & military budget.

Bill Wiese
San Jose CA


#10

Bill Wiese San Jose CA wrote:
> In general, I don't know why we do business with Red China.
I wonder about this myself, but I guess cheap always wins.
Totally shortsighted which will lead to a lot of trouble down the road.

> I try to avoid buying ANYTHING originating from there
> (sometimes difficult, but actually possible).

I bought an X-10 PRO House filter and whan it arrived I found out its made in China. In most cases when I buy mail order I am not able to determine the origin of the goods.

Any hints?

**vp


#11

Voyager 1 is still going strong--and sending signals back from the edge of the solar system---over 25 years in space and still functioning.....built when the spice series--or topcats maybe? were new......

Just try THAT with chinese junk.

Oh well, so much for MADE IN USA. Now that the "Long March" launch vehicle is working and China has put a human into (sub?) orbit, I guess even space will be explored with tools that were MADE IN RED CHINA.

But god, I hope Bill is wrong---I sure hope my children do NOT fight a war with China in 50 years.


#12

Hi Bill

Just so you & other readers don't mistake my words, my Red Chinese postings are not a racial comment. It is just that it will be exceedingly difficult for even the most innovative flexible societies (USA, Japan, Europe - and even Russia) to compete against an overpopulated, high-birth-rate society with cheap labor, lack of respect for intellectual property, etc. - R&D is funded thru a bit of 'fat' on product pricing, and the chinese mfg houses are essentially "stamp out a million cloned items for lowest price". We will end up fighting for the bottom not the mid-to-top of marketplaces.


Some sort of war will be inevitable. A Red Chinese takeover of Taiwan would cause gross world financial distress. {We need to get to the Taiwanese 'cross strait' businessmen, thru their gov't, and lay down the law that if we're gonna protect them, they've gotta not 'invest' (read: seek ultracheap slave labor) in China. It will not be a territory seeking war - we don't need to put 'boots on the ground' in China - but one to restrain its slave-driving tendencies and keep its military in check, and perhaps allow true democracy to take over (raising living standards).


Bill Wiese

San Jose CA


Quote:
Voyager 1 is still going strong-- {...snip...}
Just try THAT with chinese junk.

Oh well, so much for MADE IN USA. Now that the "Long March" launch vehicle is working and China has put a human into (sub?) orbit, I guess even space will be explored with tools that were MADE IN RED CHINA.

But god, I hope Bill is wrong---I sure hope my children do NOT fight a war with China in 50 years.


#13

Hi Vassilis..

If you're mail ordering ask for country of origin of item.
If they don't know, ask if you can return it (unused, w/all packaging) if you find out it's made in Red China. If they say no, don't order it ;) If they bitch & moan upon returning it, it was a 'sales condition' (get a tape recording!) and let your credit card co help out on refund.

I've not seen anything so necessary to my life that I really have to buy a Red Chinese product. Getting harder though for some consumer electronics items. Even lots of low- to mid-range "Japanese" electronics (Sony etc) is red Chinese made.

For freedom & nonenslaved markets,
Bill

#14

I won't dispute that many products made in China are of low quality. I also won't dispute that there are factories in China that are as described in one of the replies.
However, I have been to China (less than 2 years ago) and I visited several manufacturing facilites. Some for US companies and some companies owned by other nationalities. I did this while with a University group.
The companies I visited had first rate facilities. Not the same as they would have in the US with OSHA requirements, but still very good and much better than I expected. I saw facilities owned by Emerson Electric, Nokia, and others. Most were making items not for export, but domestic Chinese consumption.
If HP wanted to make really quality devices in China they would. But, if a company really wants to have the highest sales margins, they will find a way to cheapen any product and going to China is the first step. HP took it and have the product made just as they want it made.
All of us that collect, own, and use "vintage" HP products because of what they were probably regret the cheapening of these items, I do. But I also can look the items I have bought in the past 5-10 years and assess that some decent products have come from China.
The Chinese people I saw working were not working as hard as Americans, but they are paid a fraction of our wages and they are working to do the best for their families the same way you or I do for ours. I look forward to another visit there some day. The people I met were terrific and truly concerned for the events of 9/11. But, that was almost 2 years ago.


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