The colossal event in question, of course, is the coronavirus pandemic.
Lockdowns across the globe have forced organizations to work remotely and have subsequently increased the demand for laptops by 106% compared to 2019. The demand for this technology, however, couldn’t be met by traditional means earlier in the year due to lockdown measures in Hubei, China strangulating the flow of new technology to the rest of the world. Computer shipments from China to the US, for example, dropped 64% in early March. This combination of market conditions has created a perfect storm for the refurbished IT industry which shows few signs of easing any time soon.
The first thing conservatives have realized when forced to buy refurbished devices is that the refurbished IT industry has innovated significantly in recent years.
Technical diagnostic software advancements such as Aiken Workbench now make it possible to assess the health of every single component within a device. So, if a two-year-old laptop has a battery that operates at 61% of its original capacity, engineers can now identify this and replace it with a brand-new battery before it reaches its new home.
Reprinting advancements also now make it possible to alter the cosmetic quality of a refurbished device so that it looks indistinguishable from a new one. This, combined with bespoke vinyl wrapping options for brand recognition, offers the potential for refurbished technology to even outperform new devices cosmetically.
Perhaps most importantly, though, refurbished hardware vendors have recognized the opportunity which lies within not just selling devices in the first instance but subsequently guiding the buyer throughout the entire product lifecycle via a managed service. Next Business Day Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA), Configure to Order (CTO) and Help Desk Support (HDS) are just a few services that a Managed Service Provider (MSP) of refurbished technology now offers.
So much for discussing the lack of difference in product and service quality, though. Let’s look at what refurbished hardware offers which new hardware doesn’t offer (and never will).