Though it’s not quite intended as a test drive program, Chinese TV brand Hisense has taken the unusual step of creating a free, 100-day trial period for many of its 2021 4K, 8K, and laser TV models. The move comes after Hisense took a survey of U.S. buyers and discovered, unsurprisingly, that 80% of them want the ability to try a TV at home before committing to a purchase. The program started on September 9 and continues through October 31, 2021. During this time, you’ll be able to buy a Hisense U800GR, U8G, U7G, U6G, or L9G TV from a participating retailer and return it for a full refund if you’re not happy with it.
We’ve never seen an offer like this from other 4K UHD TV manufacturers, which suggests that Hisense feels that it needs to overcome some hesitancy among TV buyers. Despite being a huge manufacturer and seller of TVs globally, Hisense is a relatively new brand to the U.S. market, so it doesn’t enjoy the same recognition as the companies with longer histories (Sony, Samsung, Sharp, Toshiba, and LG), or even some of the relatively newer brands (Vizio, TCL).
Hisense’s survey apparently confirmed that brand bias can definitely play a role when it comes to post-purchase satisfaction, with 64% of respondents telling the company that a high price point typically equates to a higher-quality product, while 65% of respondents said the same thing of well-known brand names. When the survey asked these same people if that belief actually translated to a good experience post-purchase, apparently many felt let down, with 68% regretting a purchase of a product that was priced at the top of its category, and 71% saying that they had been let down despite buying from a well-known brand.
Whether or not this data is a reflection of the majority of TV purchases or not, there’s no denying that we all like the idea of an insurance policy when spending our hard-earned cash on new technology. “If I can test drive a car, sleep on a mattress for a month, and secretly wear underwear for weeks before returning it to the store,” said actor and Hisense brand ambassador Joel McHale in a press release, “why shouldn’t people be able to watch their favorite movies and shows starring yours truly on a new Hisense ULED TV for 100 days?”
Why indeed? For what it’s worth, we’ve been very impressed by some of Hisense’s recent TV offerings. The company now has a proven track record for creating very affordable TVs that also achieve very good picture quality, especially when it comes to brightness, which can partially determine how good high dynamic range (HDR) content will look.