Hewlett-Packard has told Net4TV Voice that it is still investigating reports of malfunctioning e-scanners and possible damage to WebTV units. Although HP does not believe the problem to be widespread, it is investigating the reports it receives. The trouble is, it isn't receiving all the reports. HP said the company does not know what the problem is, what caused it, or how to prevent it, but that they are taking the problem seriously.
Robert Yockey, product manager for the e-scanner said, "Hewlett-Packard takes any reports of product malfunctions very seriously. Reports of e-scanner product malfunctions are not widespread, in fact, HP estimates that fewer than one percent of e-scanner owners have reported a problem."
HP declined to state sales figures, but HP has said they have confirmed 14 cases of problems with e-scanners. That would put the number of scanners sold at at least 1,400, but sources familiar with HP indicate the number to be around 2,000.
"Two thousand doesn't seem like a very large number of any consumer product," said a consumer electronics analyst. "But, it's important to remember that AOLTV will also have the ability to capture picture through its video port. HP could be planning to provide the e-scanner product to that product line as well. In any case, it's a new area for HP, so it's important to them to find out what went wrong."
HP has begun an analysis of tests on units they have in-house to determine the cause of the failures. HP says they also have received a unit from a user, and that the analysis has begun, but it is not complete. HP continues to work closely with WebTV to determine the cause of the problem.
"Over the past few days we have conducted initial e-scanner product design
tests at Hewlett-Packard's Colorado Digital Imaging Division," said Yockey. "The company is also conducting tests focusing on whether there may be an issue with a component failure within the HP e-scanner."
HP encourages anyone who has had a problem with the e-scanner to call the HP customer service line at 208-323-2551. Some users may be calling only WebTV, but HP recommends calling WebTV, HP and the maker of the WebTV unit so that all can collect information in their customer service systems that could be used to pinpoint the problem.
WebTV and HP have both indicated that although they do not yet know what the cause of the problem is, once a defect or other problem is identified, steps will be taken to take care of users who were affected.
Previously in Net4TV Voice