Samsung: “Our bad firmware is your problem”

On January 16, 2009, in Doing It Wrong, by Rob Levandowski

In the most recent issue of RISKS Digest, Gene Spafford writes about his experiences with Samsung Blu-ray players. (A more detailed version is on his blog.)

It seems that Samsung published faulty firmware images for the BD-P1500 Blu-ray players on their servers.  When these BD-Live equipped players contacted Samsung and retrieved the update, the player was rendered unusable.

Gene says that Samsung is not offering a fix, and that Samsung is offering no restitution for bricking the out-of-warranty model.  In fact, if the fix—once Samsung develops or admits to one, if ever—requires the out-of-warranty unit to be sent to the factory for service, it would be at the customer’s expense.

Another, newer Samsung BD-P2500 Blu-ray player that Gene owns became non-responsive after a short period of ownership. He sent it in for warranty repair, and it has been “waiting for parts” for weeks.

I guess I won’t be buying any Samsung products.

Want to drive away customers?  An excellent method is to make a mistake that destroys a product they’ve already paid for, refuse to fix it expeditiously, and then charge them for the repair when you do get around to fixing your mistake.

I think Samsung should have immediately sent Gene a new BD-P2500 to replace his dead BD-P2500, and they should have given him a rebuilt BD-P1500 or BD-P2500 to replace the bricked BD-P1500.  That would be acknowledging that it was their mistake.

Instead, someone will wind up mentioning it to a particular kind of lawyer, they’ll become the figurehead for a class-action lawsuit, people like Gene will get a coupon good for $20 off their next Samsung Blu-ray player (if purchased in the next 6 months), and the lawyers will make millions.


One Response to Samsung: “Our bad firmware is your problem”

  1. Sid says:

    I know for sure I wont buy any SamSuck in the future, after I updated firmware on BD-P1400&1500 Can’t play any DVD+DL, especially on the 1500.

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