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Epson P906 'Launch' Saga

13th October 2020 Product News

See below for the full story to date...

Latest information is at the top, so you can easily check back for updates.



The Latest Update....

28/10/2020

Reports flowing in of happy folks _finally_ receiving their printers!  We know that 20 have now shipped.  (& We currently believe the next lot is due around the 9th of Nov. - but as usual, who knows how many...).


22/10/2020

Some good news at last !!!  After further chasing up, it now appears that around 20 our open Epson P906 orders will have shipped by mid to late next week.  
10 should leave this week with the other 10 to follow next week.

(Until we get final confirmation and actual tracking numbers, we're not letting specific folks know directly, but in theory this should cover nearly all the orders made with us to the end of July).


13/10/2020

This morning, after chasing up Epson for what must now be the hundredth time - and doing so a full 4 days after the much-delayed boat should already have been due...to give them time to book it all in etc. - the absolute muppets at Epson now tell us that their system is now giving an ETA for shipping of the 22nd of October - for the first of the three shipments mentioned below!!  The current excuse seems to be issues with the industrial action at the NSW ports.


The P906 Launch Saga - To Date

The 'launch' of the Epson P906 printer has been quite simply the most ineptly handled launch of a product that I have seen in my 20 odd years in the industry.

Announced waaaay back in early April of 2020, we were initially promised the actual release would be around June.  Epson, locally, in their infinite 'wisdom', decided to very quickly run down P800 stocks and these were all gone almost immediately when the first Melbourne lockdown began and there was a flurry of folks purchasing hardware for their new work-at-home situations.

We were given pricing on the new model in early June and told stock would start to flow from early July (and this was re-confirmed in mid-June). 

Thus, we dutifully opened up our listings for pre-orders at that time.  In general, with other hardware vendors across this period, we've seen shipping estimates slip by a week or two - or in the absolute worst case scenario, a month.  But even during COVID time, most things have indeed arrived quite close to their promised date.

In Epson's case, however, to date, at the end of September - essentially 6 full months since the initial announcement and fully 3+ months after we were told our back orders would be filled - and so far Epson have managed to supply us just 5 units!!  (Worse, one turned out to be a DOA, so effectively just 4 units have shipped at this point!).   There have been an endless series of broken promises and missed dates running all the way from June to today. 

And at no time have Epson actually bothered to offer us this information - oh no, - we're left to chase them up.  Every time.  Not so much as a peep is volunteered by Epson.

Around mid September, after again chasing Epson senior management up (several times),  we were finally told 3 shipments were due around the 25th (air), 29th of September and 5th of October (boats).   We expected these to clear at least most our back orders (of which there are many!).  After more chasing at the end of September, they told us the first of those was delayed due to (another) Covid scare at the factory - thus stock did not get in to the air.  I'm not even sure I believe them about this, at this point - I suspect they may have simply balked at air freight prices.  Honestly, who knows.  So, we wait now with bated breath for the other two shipments to eventuate...currently looking like being around the 10th and 20th of October (so again several weeks later than promised).   Their excuse for this is the NSW docks dispute.  Again, not sure I believe them as we're seeing other brands receiving and supplying stock through to us. 

But, eventually, some units have to land and ship out.    However, even after all this, and endless complaints and follow-ups from us to Epson, they simply won't tell us how many units this will actually be.  And of course, when they do finally ship them, they will almost certainly do so without telling us or being able to scrounge up the most basic level of competency and supply to us timely tracking details - more than likely, based on many years of previous experience, they will simply show up to our customers with no warning.  They are the only vendor we work with who are unable to reliably supply shipping details, which is just pathetic - there's no other word for it - for a company in 2020.

For this entire six month period - Epson have simply refused to pass on basic levels of accurate information.  Constantly dangling pseduo-dates just ahead rather than simply confessing they simply have no idea when the stock is actually coming. But of course, at a certain point, stock IS on the the water and they DO know what is coming.    At that point it's a deliberate choice by Epson to obfuscate and withhold the information about who will get what, and when, from that shipment.  It is absolutely unfathomable to us why they would annoy literally all their key dealers AND customers with this approach.  

Of course many customers have enquired whether it is worth switching to Canon (and Canon contact us regularly about selling their printers...).  It's fair to say that overall the current Canon range is very similar in performance, price and quality.  But they too are completely out of printers, with no ETA, it would seem - and they've also certainly had well more than their share of customer service issues with printers (which is why we stopped selling them years ago)...so, whilst tempting, I don't think that's the right response here.

So, in the end, all we can do is wait.  But Epson really have royally stuffed all this up and I am getting rather tired of apologising on their behalf.

(In the meantime, we're told that if you ring 'Epson's Customer Service' (a misnomer, in their case) - that their agents (we're looking at you 'Mel'... if that is your real name...) are apparently telling people things like 'We don't have a P906 model' (oh, really?) ...and other such rubbish. Whilst we fully understand you might want to ring Epson to try and get more info and/or vent your frustration - we suggest that if you do, ask to be put through to management - as the basic helpdesk staff have absolutely no clue what is going on....and realistically, apart from venting, you're not going to get any information we're not putting here!).