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Is Bang and Olufsen in trouble?

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Forester1
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Forester1 posted on Mon, Dec 16 2019 11:42 AM

How else can I interpret a delay of almost two weeks in hearing from them online about my Beosound Stage which has been accepted warrants a full refund? I was told "As soon as our headquarters confirm the process, we will notify you and the return shipping label will be provided" That was on 3rd December and I have heard nothing since.

So what is going on at Headquarters? If anyone has any contact, please help. I have run out of patience.

 

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Mr 10Percent
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10% on 20 cents….

 

B&O’s problems are all self-inflicted and amplified by what is known as the “Intellectual Yet Idiot” (IYI) Political Class at B&O:-

1.    It kept making products the same way for years past its sell-by date.

2.    It failed to change with the times quickly enough and kept its old irrelevant ways.

3.    Manufacturing process may have been up there but the IYIs failed spectacularly to understand the morphing nature of the beast.

4.    The Political class has hung on to too much product R&D (over-development) without much real and practical research. Large loudspeakers – yes, plenty, the rest – no or limited.

5.    Which follows on to that there has been a hang-on to too much mechanized gizmo style over practical workable and functioning substance (software)

6.    Disastrous in-roads into Telephones when partnership with Nokia (at the zeitgeist of time) could have been more profitable?

7.    Failure to move products to a cost effect work platform (Far East) soon enough.

8.    An over-reaction to make high quality BT mono-speakers. Great…needed but man cannot live on BT mono speakers alone.

9.    A move to tie Dealerships into to glossy $150k store face-lifts when the B&O books would have clearly indicated in a clear timeframe the exact opposite (IYIs thinking glossy stores make sales alone). Sure if your business sales are outstripping production capacity, move up-market and discriminate/differentiate (Rolex). If not, hunker-down and re-think - quickly and clearly.

10.Make a state-of-the-art outlier-product loudspeakers for the $80k and $30k segments with zero support? Hand-over that peripheral business to the 3rd party Streamer/DAC market with no fight or clear business message to the so-called audiophile community?

11.Finally, back to the IYI Political Class. Chairman of the Board – up to his eyebrows in Danske Bank corruption and seems to have resigned from everywhere he had fingers in pies – except B&O. Open/revolving door for same-type sycophants with fancy job-titles, designer eyeware and non-jobs? How much has this Company really been held back?

12.This Forum may not have helped as a true sounding board for the archaic B&O golden years (Jenson & Lewis multi-CD spinners with Blu-ray etc….ditto vertical turntables. I mean? Same old ideas revamped).

People often say that B&O cannott compete? Why not? Look at the newcomers….Auralic, PS Audio(?), Mytek, Schlitt, Dutch & Dutch, Kii, dCS and many others can make state-of the art products that work properly and sound very very good. Try and buy an Auralic G2 component without waiting 2-4 weeks? So there is a strong business out there if you talk Hi-Fi and there is a very strong (albeit competitive) market out there for high-end Sonos-class gear. It is just that B&O, its Board and its internal political class have been too arrogant to change their internal business models – nether mind the external business model need.

However, where this Forum Board can help…….is to move away from its own inward perception of holding on to the good’o’days of Jensen and Lewis and 6-diskers and look out there to what is currently in state-of-the-art. Boxey but SOTA. Push in whatever way we can by asking if such a product has a real market chance and if can be B&O-ized (sans the software failures and the margin-eating mechanisms).

B&O NEEDS to implode in on itself, crush-out the profit-absorbing political class and re-invest small scale with true hi-fi/high-end gear built/designed by Danish engineers and compete with the Companies mentioned above. It will be the next significant company milestone.

 

/RANT mode OFF

 

Fansastic
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Mr 10Percent:

10% on 20 cents….

B&O’s problems are all self-inflicted and amplified by what is known as the “Intellectual Yet Idiot” (IYI) Political Class at B&O:-

1. It kept making products the same way for years past its sell-by date.

2. It failed to change with the times quickly enough and kept its old irrelevant ways.

3. Manufacturing process may have been up there but the IYIs failed spectacularly to understand the morphing nature of the beast.

4. The Political class has hung on to too much product R&D (over-development) without much real and practical research. Large loudspeakers – yes, plenty, the rest – no or limited.

5. Which follows on to that there has been a hang-on to too much mechanized gizmo style over practical workable and functioning substance (software)

6. Disastrous in-roads into Telephones when partnership with Nokia (at the zeitgeist of time) could have been more profitable?

7. Failure to move products to a cost effect work platform (Far East) soon enough.

8. An over-reaction to make high quality BT mono-speakers. Great…needed but man cannot live on BT mono speakers alone.

9. A move to tie Dealerships into to glossy $150k store face-lifts when the B&O books would have clearly indicated in a clear timeframe the exact opposite (IYIs thinking glossy stores make sales alone). Sure if your business sales are outstripping production capacity, move up-market and discriminate/differentiate (Rolex). If not, hunker-down and re-think - quickly and clearly.

10. Make a state-of-the-art outlier-product loudspeakers for the $80k and $30k segments with zero support? Hand-over that peripheral business to the 3rd party Streamer/DAC market with no fight or clear business message to the so-called audiophile community?

11. Finally, back to the IYI Political Class. Chairman of the Board – up to his eyebrows in Danske Bank corruption and seems to have resigned from everywhere he had fingers in pies – except B&O. Open/revolving door for same-type sycophants with fancy job-titles, designer eyeware and non-jobs? How much has this Company really been held back?

12. This Forum may not have helped as a true sounding board for the archaic B&O golden years (Jenson & Lewis multi-CD spinners with Blu-ray etc….ditto vertical turntables. I mean? Same old ideas revamped).

People often say that B&O cannott compete? Why not? Look at the newcomers….Auralic, PS Audio(?), Mytek, Schlitt, Dutch & Dutch, Kii, dCS and many others can make state-of the art products that work properly and sound very very good. Try and buy an Auralic G2 component without waiting 2-4 weeks? So there is a strong business out there if you talk Hi-Fi and there is a very strong (albeit competitive) market out there for high-end Sonos-class gear. It is just that B&O, its Board and its internal political class have been too arrogant to change their internal business models – nether mind the external business model need.

However, where this Forum Board can help…….is to move away from its own inward perception of holding on to the good’o’days of Jensen and Lewis and 6-diskers and look out there to what is currently in state-of-the-art. Boxey but SOTA. Push in whatever way we can by asking if such a product has a real market chance and if can be B&O-ized ( sans the software failures and the margin-eating mechanisms).

B&O NEEDS to implode in on itself, crush-out the profit-absorbing political class and re-invest small scale with true hi-fi/high-end gear built/designed by Danish engineers and compete with the Companies mentioned above. It will be the next significant company milestone.

/RANT mode OFF

Clear statement and very well put. Cannot judge the mismanagement but a critical voice to B&O’s operation above the lak of consumer support and software flaws, is much needed on this forum.

We are all B&O enthusiasts on this forum but there is too little room for a critical and clear comment on today”s business model. Debating on here is regarding mainly the end of B&O due to software problems or the immortality just because it is B&O and still have future plans.

Both are not reasonable arguments imo. The fact that there is no more support by Mr Anderson on the beta app on this forum, for me is much more alarming than their stock price!

If we care so much for their financials, either buy new gear or buy huge amounts of shares.

In relation to B&O we should provide valuable feedback to them, not only batter them with perpetual comments on their weak software performance. The tone of voice has become invaluable, both the negatives and the positives, it is almost getting childish.

B&O is a serious company with serious challenges these day’s, lets try to give serious feedback to them.

Main goal for this forum is to help eachother with problems/questions regarding the products, not to be the always positive ambassador for the never failing brand or the always angry customer which finds hinself in a desillusion for whatever reason.

I had to get this of my chest as my Christmas spirit.

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HH1971
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HH1971 replied on Sun, Dec 29 2019 9:29 AM

In my view, there is a strong causality between revenue / sales growth

and the product quality perception by the customer, indicated by star-rating in Apple App Store.

Or is it just a correlation or pure coincidence?

It would be interesting how the B&O leadership team interprets these development. 

Forester1
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I didn’t really expect my OP to lead to all these observations about B&O! I certainly wanted to highlight a problem with their online customer service.

My refund finally came through today. 

I ended up buying a Ruark Audio R5. It’s excellent. 

Over and out. 

Sandyb
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Sandyb replied on Tue, Dec 31 2019 3:04 PM

Your OP coincided with their latest results, which were horrible.

I guess that event broadened the scope of the discussion here.

 

Forester1:

I didn’t really expect my OP to lead to all these observations about B&O! I certainly wanted to highlight a problem with their online customer service.

My refund finally came through today. 

I ended up buying a Ruark Audio R5. It’s excellent. 

Over and out. 

 

seethroughyou
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Forester1:

I didn’t really expect my OP to lead to all these observations about B&O! I certainly wanted to highlight a problem with their online customer service.

My refund finally came through today.

I ended up buying a Ruark Audio R5. It’s excellent.

Over and out.

And there’s the rub. I now find myself turning to other manufacturers for audio and visual. 10 years ago, B&O would have been my first and only port of call. Either I am now making bad buying decisions or B&O is making bad stuff. My patience with Bs5 and with the Moment was exhausted and now I’m convicted to never buy a B&O audio machine ever again.

I’m beyond confident that it would be substandard in build, have recurrent software and reliability issues only to be discontinued several years later. I have complete trust and faith in B&O that they will churn out products with these deficits with impressive regularity. Yet at the same time, I hope that someone, somewhere will change the trajectory.

Present: BL90, Beosound Moment, Beosound Core, BL6000, Beogram CD7000, Beogram 7000, BS Essence Remote.

Past: BL1, BL2, BL8000, BS9000, BL5, Beocenter 2, Beosound 5, BV5, BV4-50, BV4-65, Beosystem 3, BL3, DVD1, Beoremote 4.

 

Puncher
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seethroughyou:
Forester1:

 

I didn’t really expect my OP to lead to all these observations about B&O! I certainly wanted to highlight a problem with their online customer service.

 

My refund finally came through today.

 

I ended up buying a Ruark Audio R5. It’s excellent.

 

Over and out.

 

 

And there’s the rub. I now find myself turning to other manufacturers for audio and visual. 10 years ago, B&O would have been my first and only port of call. Either I am now making bad buying decisions or B&O is making bad stuff. My patience with Bs5 and with the Moment gave run out and now I’m convicted to never ever to buy a B&O audio machine ever again.

 

 

I’m beyond confident that it would be substandard in build, have recurrent software and reliability issues only to be discontinued several years later. I have complete trust and faith in B&O that will churn out products with these deficits with impressive regularity. Yet at the same time, I hope that someone, somewhere will change the trajectory.

Fear not, MM will be along shortly to "re-educate" you!

Ban boring signatures!

HH1971
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HH1971 replied on Wed, Jan 1 2020 10:36 AM

seethroughyou:
And there’s the rub. I now find myself turning to other manufacturers for audio and visual.

I see it as you do, after the experience I had with the Beosound5 and even worse the Beosound Moment. I’ve moved on to the Beosound Core, at least it is working (normally I would not mention it, when talking about B&O that is already something special these days), but still the user experience is far far away from enjoyable / easy to use.

Maybe I am special because not only do I use Deezer (the only use case B&O seems to focus on), but I also have a large mp3 collection on my NAS and still like to listen to my CDs from time to time. Currently I am testing Roon Labs and TIDAL.

I am not sure yet which direction to go and if Roon Labs and / or Sonos could be a solution. But lang story short, I am one of those people who buy less and less B&O equipment every year and thus contributing to commercial crisis of B&O. 

IA64
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IA64 replied on Wed, Jan 1 2020 11:12 AM

Am I the only one here buying B&O because of the brand name ? 

Sure I don't expect a TV to last me a couple of years because the technology is moving really fast. What's left is a beautiful design with a brand name on my wall. 

You can buy a gold ring for $500 dollars or spend $8000 on very similar Cartier ring. It's all about the brand name. B&O was known for being a luxury high-end AV brand.

Unfortunately, except for the BL50 " maybe" new models aren't everyone's taste. 

This is a pure subjective opinion however, the BV11/14 and the Avant are much more appealing to look at than the Eclipse or the Harmony.

I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one; you can see the comments on B&O videos on Youtube...

2014-2015 : " Stunning", " I wish I can afford it one day", "  Art! Now all i need is my lottery ticket to win",  

2017 : "B&O, shame you... a Soundboard for LG OLED55C7 for €6250" , " so 11k for an lg screen with no mods at all and a soundbar that doesn't support dolby atmos", " A LG C7 panel with B&O custom speakers and a few overpriced gimmicks that's all "

2019 : "
B&O appear to have lost their way, with this TV they seem to think that gimmickry compensates for quality and the pricing of this is ridiculous!" ,  "I don't feel it..."  

 

What I'm trying to say is that there's definitely a change in how people look at the brand and think about it. You can even feel it in the forum. 

Then they tell you B&O isn't doing well because it's a niche market... No it's not.  People have money... They are standing in line at Louis Vuitton for EUR 3000 pair of boots. They are after the brand. 

People renovating their apartments, buying Fendi, Minotti etc.. and spending hundreds of thousands on furniture won't mind paying 30 grand on a TV....BUT THEY WILL WHEN THE F**ING TV WON'T WORK FLAWLESSLY. 

Sorry I lost my temper but this is a very serious issue that is very detrimental to B&O reputation.

B&O is a package of  " High quality, Premium service, iconic design and luxury". What's left of all that is the high quality ONLY.

Their service is almost non existent.  Support is very slow, software development is catastrophic and the trust in the brand is going downhill. 

Then there's the marketing which I don't see at all. B&O did quite a good job when it was introduced in the AUDI cars back in time. People were all over the internet talking about the fancy tweeters, the amazing sound system which will cost you a leg but definitely worth it. Where are we now ? 

Introduce more people to the brand, but before you do that, your products should be mature enough for marketing. 

There's an old saying, wealthy people have wealthy friends.... One customer with a negative experience and you lose 10 potential customers. 

 

moxxey
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I'll also add something to this discussion.

Support. Terrible. My BV12-65 stopped working in....early November. In January 2020 it's still no further from being fixed. You just can't get the direct support or engineer support you did a few years ago. I just can't get anyone to help fix it. If your local store goes, you really are in trouble. You're just left with a non-working TV stuck on the wall for months.

I did manage to get an old bloke with an old laptop to have a look at it, but he was none-the-wiser. And that just got me even more concerned. 

The whole system comes across as a mess which is ready to implode. I've been with B&O a long time and something doesn't feel right to me. 

I'm half-tempted to just ditch the entire TV and get an LG C9. And after years of B&O support, it will be me....out.

Sandyb
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And thats a real issue with investing / re-investing large amounts of money in newer B&O gear.

I'm in London, and there's a chance even my dealer moves on.

He's generally very good and helpful, but given the uncertainty, it might well be folly investing 10k in a TV.

Part of what I pay for is the service of paying someone to come and just sort everything out for me.

And sorry about the 12-65, here's hoping it can be resuscitated!

 

moxxey:

I'll also add something to this discussion.

Support. Terrible. My BV12-65 stopped working in....early November. In January 2020 it's still no further from being fixed. You just can't get the direct support or engineer support you did a few years ago. I just can't get anyone to help fix it. If your local store goes, you really are in trouble. You're just left with a non-working TV stuck on the wall for months.

I did manage to get an old bloke with an old laptop to have a look at it, but he was none-the-wiser. And that just got me even more concerned. 

The whole system comes across as a mess which is ready to implode. I've been with B&O a long time and something doesn't feel right to me. 

I'm half-tempted to just ditch the entire TV and get an LG C9. And after years of B&O support, it will be me....out.

 

moxxey
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Sandyb:

He's generally very good and helpful, but given the uncertainty, it might well be folly investing 10k in a TV.

I can't justify an Eclipse now I can see an LG C9 55" for just over £1000 and a Stage for just over £1000. Wall-mounted and with the BeoRemote you have a decent setup for £2500 or less.

Mikipidia
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Have you thought about sending it to B&O manchester for repair?

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Old: Beovision Eclipse, Beolab 1's, Beolab 2, Beovision 10-46, Overture 2300, beolab 8000's, Beolab 4000's, Beovision avant 32" etc. etc.

moxxey
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moxxey replied on Wed, Jan 1 2020 10:44 PM

Mikipidia:
Have you thought about sending it to B&O manchester for repair?

Sending it? It's a 3-man install job! How would I send it? It's huge and heavy! You make it sound like i can bubble wrap and walk it to the Post Office :)

It's a staggering 76Kg. The weight of an average man. 140cm wide, too.

Mikipidia
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Oh sorry, I thought is was the Bs4 bit that was faulty

New: Beovision Harmony, Beolab 50's, Beolab 18's, Beolab 17's, Beolab 3's, Beosound 9000 mk3, Beosound Stage & LG, Beosound 2, Beoplay M3, Beoplay A1, Beoplay H4 gen 2, Beoplay E8 3.0

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Old: Beovision Eclipse, Beolab 1's, Beolab 2, Beovision 10-46, Overture 2300, beolab 8000's, Beolab 4000's, Beovision avant 32" etc. etc.

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