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Tech Consumer Advice

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Is it possible to return working hardware bought face to face in a shop?


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I wanted to know the answer to this question while a 21 day return to shop agreement is still in place. It concerns a computer which my mother bought for herself in a computer shop (P.C. World), and so I don't know if the item would be returned anyway, as my mother may not care much.

But I wanted to know if the rights are there to return an item the consumer is not satisfied with, but where there is no actual fault in the item and it is in new condition and the working order as described in the sale.

I hunted around reviews to name a new desktop computer for my mother as she said she wanted a good one. I knew that computers get slow very quickly nowadays, and I wanted to avoid this as much as possible. I found a good Chillblast computer, at around £600, and Mum was going to buy it.

Though when I was away from visiting her, Mum decided that she didn't want to wait the 7 to 14 days for delivery and went along to a computer shop to select one to bring home immediately. Fine, I thought, but I didn't hold out hopes that the machine would be much good for heavy Web use and streaming HD video within 2 years or so.

My mother bought a Lenovo machine, H520s, with an intel i3 2120 processor (3.3. ghz with no power acceleration) without a 3rd party graphics processor, it's an intel chipset. The i3 processor has very good reviews in itself, but is quite old now, a couple of generations pre-Sandy Bridge I think.

Out of the box, it seemed to work well. As always, the HD video screensaver is impressive and, as with previous computers leads one to believe video will be smooth and fast. (Which never lasted long.) And it was, Vimeo running HD easily and nicely.

But, within a week, with 5 or a few more Internet Explorer windows open, standard definition Youtube videos can buffer 10 seconds at a time and play, and then wait while the circle goes around in the middle, and buffer a bit more, and so on.

So I wonder how the machine will cope with 1080p video in 2 years time.

Just in case my mother would agree to returning the machine for a refund, is this possible.

I have read the receipt from P.C. World which states any item can be returned if working, just if you change your mind, within 21 days - as long as it is completely unopened and in the original, fully sealed packaging. Of course, it's not.

How can you try a machine and return it, if this condition is the only way to return goods which aren't actually faulty. I can't claim the machine is faulty, it would meet its description and is in working order. I only sugest that it isn't right to purchase for the purpose, and due to trying the machine, this has been discovered, and a different machine would be preferred. After all, it's a purchase for an item intended to last at least 3 years, perhaps 4 and a bit more.

This article says that insisting goods can be returned only if sealed and untried can be in breach of the buyer's right to inspect or assess a product. However, I think the article is only about distance purchases:


Does anyone know if there are any rights for a buyer who buys face to face in a shop? At the end of the day, there really isn't much difference between buying online and in a computer shop where a full computer is concerned. Because both are in a very similar position as neither will really give a good opportunity to try to see if a desktop PC is suitable for some persons' needs - that takes a good amount of time - perhaps a few days.

If you know about the rights of returning after trial or any rights of return from a shop, please answer.

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This post seems to me very much like another I have read this evening,also a first posting.They too seemed to be looking for an argument and couldent be convinced that they may have been wrong?

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