Nikon Shooting Themselves In The Foot

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cfargo

Guest
Nikon USA sent out a letter to all camera repair shops in the USA stating that parts will only be sold to the handful of Nikon Authorized Repair Centers in the future. This would be like Ford forcing you to take your Ford back to one of their “Authorized Dealers” for service. There is one heck of a lot of people out there who are very capable of replacing minor parts on their cameras not to mention the numerous independent repair shops out there. Nikon uses the excuse of technology, hasn’t your car also change in technology but you can still buy any part you want for it. Talking with others in the camera service industry, it is the general consensus that Nikon wants to bring more service dollars in house and is only using “Technology” as an excuse. Last time I checked there is a law in California that requires parts to be sold for up to a period of time after it an item was discontinued. So I’m sure this isn’t the last we will here of this knowing that there are letters already drafted up to the states Attorney Generals Office.

As a Certified Photographic Consultant and camera repairman, I constantly get asked what brand of camera I would recommend. Even though I shoot Canon, I would regularly recommend Canon and/or Nikon. Getting frustrated with Canon letting Nikon kick their butt in areas, I had even considered going to the dark side. Nikon’s actions today changed everything, no more recommendations and I sure the heck wouldn’t buy anything Nikon for myself.


 

poias

EOS 90D
Dec 6, 2011
170
0
If I had Nikon equipment and need help, I would certainly go with the AUTHORIZED Nikon service, rather than mom-n-pop shop, even if the problem could be minor. And if warranty is in play, the whole thing is a moot point anyway.

That said, it does put pressure on independent shops and, like you said, they might not recommend Nikon to others.
 
Jun 10, 2011
330
0
www.davidriesenberg.com
You mention the auto industry and they actually do essentially the same thing only with diagnostics equipment. Over the past decade or so, the manufacturers constantly raise the price on the diagnostic computer and interfaces in order to push out the small, independent shops that simply cannot afford these. And with each new generation of cars, there is less and less that one can do without these tools.
 
C

cfargo

Guest
poias said:
If I had Nikon equipment and need help, I would certainly go with the AUTHORIZED Nikon service, rather than mom-n-pop shop, even if the problem could be minor.
So if you lost a battery cover, you would take it to an "Authorized" service center and not just buy one yourself and put it on? Having the option to do it yourself or to have the local shop do it is being taken away by Nikon.

David, at least in the auto industry you can buy any part you want for your car. Affording test and diagnostic equipment is another story, but it is available to buy.
 

poias

EOS 90D
Dec 6, 2011
170
0
cfargo said:
So if you lost a battery cover, you would take it to an "Authorized" service center and not just buy one yourself and put it on? Having the option to do it yourself or to have the local shop do it is being taken away by Nikon.
For things like battery covers, you do NOT need parts from Nikon, lol. You can get them direct from eBay! But for things like shot sensors or burnt chip, who in their right mind would go to unauthorized dealers?

I agree in principle that what Nikon is doing is unethical and against small businesses, which could lead to higher prices in the long run.
 
R

Ryusui

Guest
This would be less of a problem if Nikon Service Centers didn't take forever and a year to service and return products sent in for warranty or repair.
 

Mt Spokane Photography

I post too Much on Here!!
CR Pro
Mar 25, 2011
16,378
1,388
poias said:
cfargo said:
So if you lost a battery cover, you would take it to an "Authorized" service center and not just buy one yourself and put it on? Having the option to do it yourself or to have the local shop do it is being taken away by Nikon.
For things like battery covers, you do NOT need parts from Nikon, lol. You can get them direct from eBay! But for things like shot sensors or burnt chip, who in their right mind would go to unauthorized dealers?

I agree in principle that what Nikon is doing is unethical and against small businesses, which could lead to higher prices in the long run.
Not for long. If ebay sellers can't buy them from Nikon, you won't be able to buy them on ebay.
 

Edwin Herdman

EOS RP
May 6, 2011
541
0
Let's be calm about this: The letter does not tally with what the OP is suggesting. I'm more concerned about minimum price agreements (requirements) that stores must play with, regardless of whether it makes good business sense.

It makes perfect sense that Nikon would not want non-certified repair centers, who probably did not have access to all the Nikon literature and support, fooling around with their cameras. Of course, I do not know what goes around with a certification, and there may be a valid question about it if it costs a fee. However, as a car owner, I expect my car service to include professionals who have been judged competent to do the work. I believe that as it is a large and regulated industry, there are non-corporate sources of certification for individuals and shops can do auto work, but you still need access to the materials. For cameras, there isn't as much demand to have university programs to certify technicians, as compared with autos (or computing certifications, i.e. the CompTIA A+ - the Microsoft MVP is not an exact example because it is more or less an award for outstanding achievement in a field, and not the result of an exam), and there isn't quite as much of a public interest argument in making sure that certification is an open and vendor-neutral process (though you might agree).

It's a bit like my saying that if you sell my bent plastic and tungsten shims that you should be 'certified' in their use and installation to sell them. It may seem nonsensical, but if the market is not as essential to public welfare as auto or computer certs, then I may well expect more freedom as universities won't be jumping to certify, and there's not much of an argument that I need to be regulated in terms of allowing others to certify users of my specialist product.

The argument is rather whether I am acting as a monopoly and restricting the availability of certs, which the Nikon letter does not inherently suggest. If their actual business practice is to use this as another tool to enforce price controls, or to make loads of cash off a needlessly expensive cert process, then there is a case, but simply requiring a cert doesn't seem to be a problem to me.
 
C

cfargo

Guest
For what it's worth, I have been to Nikon for factory training on past models but since there wasn't a need (too many too close already) for an "Authorized (Warranty) Service Center" in my area, I never was offered said status nor was I interested in it. This isn't just about independent repair shops but the consumer now being forced to pay for a standard repair when all they really wanted was a new battery door.
 
P

Picsfor

Guest
What the letter is saying is that you've got to get certfified by Nikon to repair their cameras.

It means they make money in training you and certifying you, as well as supplying tools and diagnostic software, available once you've become certified.

It's not stopping any one becoming certified - it's just making a packet on the certification!

Welcome to the Auto Industry...

Under EU Law, they must allow any one to take the certification course who is willing and able to stump the certification fees etc...
 
C

cfargo

Guest
Picsfor said:
What the letter is saying is that you've got to get certfified by Nikon to repair their cameras.

It means they make money in training you and certifying you, as well as supplying tools and diagnostic software, available once you've become certified.

It's not stopping any one becoming certified - it's just making a packet on the certification!

Welcome to the Auto Industry...

Under EU Law, they must allow any one to take the certification course who is willing and able to stump the certification fees etc...
Not the case at all, If Nikon doesn't need/want an Authorized Warranty Service center in your area, I don't care how much money you have, it won't happen. This is true with all the camera manufacturers.
 

Maui5150

EOS RP
Sep 21, 2011
564
0
Not surprised. When I was researching between Nikon and Canon and decided which camp I went into I saw a TON of issues from them refusing to service equipment, even for repairs to be paid by the owner to tons and tons of issues with them refusing obvious warranty defects. Look up some of the consumer complaint aggregations: Nikon is listed in the middle and Canon is near the top.

As far as comparison sake goes, especially in the auto industry... some of the best mechanics I have EVER come across were not factory service people. They were independent, knew the vehicles better than the dealers, and did not rip off the customer.

Now Infiniti is another story... at least the one I take my car to... my 60K service was next to nothing. They inspected it, and only did the work that was needed based upon wear and inspection, i.e. I did not pay to replace parts that did not need replacing.
 

poias

EOS 90D
Dec 6, 2011
170
0
Mt Spokane Photography said:
poias said:
cfargo said:
So if you lost a battery cover, you would take it to an "Authorized" service center and not just buy one yourself and put it on? Having the option to do it yourself or to have the local shop do it is being taken away by Nikon.
For things like battery covers, you do NOT need parts from Nikon, lol. You can get them direct from eBay! But for things like shot sensors or burnt chip, who in their right mind would go to unauthorized dealers?

I agree in principle that what Nikon is doing is unethical and against small businesses, which could lead to higher prices in the long run.
Not for long. If ebay sellers can't buy them from Nikon, you won't be able to buy them on ebay.
Those ebay parts are off-brand anyway, so no impact.
 

vuilang

EOS 90D
Dec 27, 2011
142
0
so, If my speedlight foot-mount broke, i can only send it into nikon (return timetale around 6-8weeks) instead of ordering the foot and replace by myself? That's absurd.
 
C

cfargo

Guest
vuilang said:
so, If my speedlight foot-mount broke, i can only send it into nikon (return timetale around 6-8weeks) instead of ordering the foot and replace by myself? That's absurd.
Yes, that is what this means to Nikon owners.