Normally I would not just do a post to plug a specific company, unless they had done something really outstanding (or perhaps done something really poorly), which Bose has done now, at least twice. Way back on November 26th 2008 I bought a pair of Bose TriPort In-Ear Headphones from Best Buy for around $100 including tax. At the time, they were probably the most expensive ear-bud type headphones I had purchased but looking back, it was the best money ever spent for that type of thing.
Not only do these headphones have the best sound quality of any ear bud headphones (see my product review on CNET) but Bose backs them up with a total and complete one year warranty. Big deal right, well, except for when you wear them every day in all different conditions and they don’t make it that one year.
In July 2009 the wires fried and my nice expensive headphones had lasted about 8 months. I contacted Bose and they replaced the damaged pair, for free, and in about a week I had a brand new pair of headphones. Those Bose sent me in 2009 lasted until last week with photo below, about another 8-9 months. So I emailed Bose again, thinking this time I was out of luck, and once again they offered to replace them for free. Not only that, but they even offered to upgrade the set to the mobile version with the inline mic for $29.
It seems that once you pay for something from Bose, if you use them like I do, you have a perpetual warranty.
Bose told me again that this new pair, being shipped around June 1 2010 will carry the same full one year warranty. Wow, just love when a company stands by their products. Our culture is fully immersed in the generic, low quality, disposable, product lines that flood our discount box stores, but there are still a few companies that make a high quality product, and usually the higher price is well worth paying. Of course, they also get my business beyond these headphones.
My wife has a pair of these headphones, and I also own a pair of their QuietComfort 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones (probably the best pair of headphones on the market for the price, see my CNET review), and their Bose On-Ear Headphones (an in-between model). Some audiophile will argue my point on sound quality, but for the price, and some are far far more expensive, Bose has found a great medium between price and quality
In this case, my high price of $100 for a pair of high quality in-ear headphones from Bose cost me about $0.08 per day if I include the new pair that are on their way. There are a couple of caveats with this of course. If your headphones last longer than a year, you are pretty much out of luck. I am probably not the most typical user of these headphones. I wear them, and have worn them, on a tractor cutting 40 acres of grass through the entire summer, in the woods, on a bike, a motorcycle, in the car, in the rain, snow, and every other imaginable condition.
Of course the negative you can take from this is that obviously, under heavy and daily use, these headphones lack a bit of durability, but as long as Bose continues to stand behind them, I’m ok with that at this point. Products today, even high quality products, anything that is mass produced, are really made for the “averages”. If you are an under-average user, you pay more and get less, and if you are an over-average user, you pay less and get more, simple as that.
Good customer service and high quality products are a hard combination to find today so I like to point it out when it comes across path. I can think of only a handful, like Apple, maybe Honda? What are some of the companies and products you have found today that have similar customer service?
The above post was made after Bose had replaced my in-ear headphones. The ones above last just about one year, and once again, they replaced them, for free, in the summer of 2011. I’m still amazed at their customer service, and still love the in-ear headphones, even though I can’t get them to last more than a year.
Once again, as comical as it seems now, these headphones lasted me about a year. They fell apart just about at the 10-11 month date, and once again, Bose replaced them for me, for free. This is now about my 5th set of these headphones, which I paid for back in 2008-2009. I would like to point out that I am probably considered to be a very heavy user of these headphones. I wear them several hours a day, every single day, and often wear them outside on a tractor while mowing the pasture.