Manufacturers spent more than $25 billion last year on warranty claims. Many of the largest claim totals are for electronic, computing and mobile products, with Dell and Hewlett-Packard leading the list.* Clearly, the warranty business is a tremendous operating cost for both manufacturers and retailers.

Customers need the capability of easily returning items under warranty terms, even if they lose their receipts or purchase products online. By incorporating solutions from Intellareturn, sellers can:

  • provide enhanced services
  • match RFID tags to loyalty or credit cards used at the time of purchase
  • promote operational efficiency
  • encourage additional purchases
  • support anonymity to protect customer privacy.

Intellareturn RadioTag(sm) services validate warranty claims and address the growing danger of counterfeit products that manufacturers still must guarantee. With Intellareturn, each warranty could be managed better since product history, date of sale, customer ownership and registration information are associated with the tag's unique ID in a database accessible from the Intellareturn Return Server.

Many consumer electronics manufacturers and retailers have been exploring new ways to service their customer's needs. The Intellareturn RFID solutions could be the next logical step.

    By integrating RFID functionality into 
their products, electronics companies 
will enable a global RFID infrastructure. 
By providing physical objects with the 
infrastructure needed to communicate 
with each other via the Internet, RFID 
will help fuel the growth of the 
burgeoning global network of 
interconnected devices. 

Adding an RFID tag to a bag of 
potato chips provides few innovative 
possibilities for capturing and 
conveying information. Conversely, in 
electronics products, adding a tag or 
chip to a mobile phone, washing 
machine or heart-rate monitor can 
increase the value of the product by 
changing its capabilities, and hence the 
very nature of the product itself.

The Untold RFID Story
Special IBM Report
Dr. Hagen Wenzek
Global Electronics Team Leader
Institute for Business Value
IBM Business Consulting Services
  • The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) estimates that 20 million digital televisions, 22 million DVD players and 22 million desktop and laptop computers will be shipped to retail stores throughout the United States in 2005. RFID tagging in the supply chain has the potential to bring up to $4 billion in annual savings to the $125 billion-a-year consumer electronics industry, based on a recent study by Accenture.

  • Toshiba and UPS announced a new laptop computer repair process designed to reduce turnaround time for customers. According to Mark Simons, vice president and general manager for Toshiba's Digital Products Division, "[We] eliminate multiple transportation steps, centralize parts and repairs, and reduce costs [with this program]." Dan Brutto, vice president and general manager, global transportation/shared services, UPS Supply Chain Solutions, said, "As a leader in the PC industry, Toshiba has recognized that post-sales service and ease-of-use are critical ways to build positive, long-term relationships with customers."

  • Capgemini, HP and Intel created the CP-Connect joint initiative to help companies strengthen links with fulfillment, trading partners and consumers with solutions that deliver real business value and move organizations toward becoming Adaptive Enterprises able to synchronize business and IT to capitalize on change.

  • Best Buy announced that it would be deploying RFID/Electronic Product Codes on pallets and cases beginning in 2006. Based on an interview with RFID Journal, Paul Freeman, RFID program director for Best Buy, said, "... tag cost is not nearly the deal breaker that it is for consumer product goods manufacturing. And a lot of our cases have a single item, so we can get some traction on item-level."

  • Royal Philips Electronics and Sony have announced a new radio frequency identification technology called Near Field Communication. They envision NFC chips in PDAs, cell phones, set-top boxes, handheld games, MP3 players and other consumer electronics devices.

RFID is especially important to electronics, mobile and computing players because products are often seen as commodities, but the way companies service their customers is not. With Intellareturn, these organizations can gain better information to create a more valuable customer experience — even integrating our solutions within the manufacturer, retailer or online merchant's website as an end-to-end customer return center.

To learn more, contact us today or explore our thoughts on the industry at the Intellareturn blog.

* Source: Warranty Week