After five years, the zipper of my Crumpler Big Belly failed.  Crumpler proudly offers 30 year warranty, so I thought I’d check whether this is for real, or just a marketing gag.  I actually recall my mother once claiming warranty on an AMC cooking pot (they also offer 30 year warranty), and she got it replaced, even though the damage was partly her fault.  Kudos to AMC!  That’s great service, and good brand building.

Well, Crumpler declined to honor the warranty, stating that it is "unfortunate that the warranty conditions are so often misunderstood", specifically that they don’t cover "wear and tear".

While I understand this, I wonder what can possibly fall under warranty that is not wear and tear.  Broken zipper?  Wear and tear.  Seam loosening?  Wear and tear.  Sorry, but I cannot think of anything that’s left for them to cover under such a warranty.

My new laptop backpack is a Samsonite with "only" two years warranty.  If it lasts for five years, then I can feel good about having gotten good use out of the product. The Crumpler also lasted for five years, and without the 30-year warranty, I would have felt great about it (possibly getting another Crumpler).

Instead, they offered a phony warranty (well, I am sure it’s legal and all in the fine print).  But they did a lot to damage their credibility and their brand, and this violates the trust of their customers.  Typical short-term marketing thinking.  They should read Seath Godin’s All Marketers are Liars.