: Excessive packaging


hhk
Jun 28th, 2010, 07:35 PM
Ever order a mouse from Dell and have it arrive in a box big enough to house a monitor? This site would be amusing if it weren't so disturbing:

HP excessive packaging world record put to the test ? The Register (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/07/29/aboxalypse_now/)

maxipad
Jun 28th, 2010, 09:02 PM
Ever order a mouse from Dell and have it arrive in a box big enough to house a monitor? This site would be amusing if it weren't so disturbing:

HP excessive packaging world record put to the test ? The Register (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/07/29/aboxalypse_now/)

Too funny. I got something like that from Sun. It was solaris on CD and it came in a box big enough for a mac pro.

Chealion
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:34 AM
Let's try and keep it on topic shall we?

====

Not as bad as others, I ordered a two USB keys from a wholesaler in Vancouver who overnighted a box large enough to hold 5 or 6 very large textbooks with a ton of padding. Definitely didn't understand the rationale by the shipper.

Lichen Software
Jun 30th, 2010, 07:37 AM
Long time ago when the earth was green, I ordered a magneto-optical drive out of Texas. It came in in what looked like a largish box. I figured jeez, another box filled with shipping peanuts.

I opened it up and there was a sling or cradle built into the box. As you opened the box, the drive was lifted up to remove it and as you closed the box, the drive went to the middle of the box and was totally wrapped in it's sling and was about 2 inches from touching any surface.

I thought it was the neatest thing and I have never seen it used since.

ertman
Jun 30th, 2010, 09:45 AM
I opened it up and there was a sling or cradle built into the box. As you opened the box, the drive was lifted up to remove it and as you closed the box, the drive went to the middle of the box and was totally wrapped in it's sling and was about 2 inches from touching any surface.

I thought it was the neatest thing and I have never seen it used since.

I wonder how well that sling actually worked for protection. While it would protect it from actual physical impacts, it could conceivably transfer the forces into the rigidly held drive. If the slings were made of some kind of elastic this would help. I found that from testing these type of devices as part of class exercise that the sling method is actually less effective then many other methods.

I remember receiving a windows cd in a box about the size meant for size 12 shoes from tigerdirect. I find Apple does a really good job for packaging.

screature
Jun 30th, 2010, 10:43 AM
Amazon.ca is bad for this as well. When I order a replacement ink (one cartridge) it comes in a box big enough to put a football in! Crazy waste.

Lichen Software
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:06 PM
I wonder how well that sling actually worked for protection. While it would protect it from actual physical impacts, it could conceivably transfer the forces into the rigidly held drive. If the slings were made of some kind of elastic this would help. I found that from testing these type of devices as part of class exercise that the sling method is actually less effective then many other methods.

I can't say for sure, but the sling was plastic film so it did have some elasticity. I showed the package to a friend of mine who had worked in mines and he indicated that this was very similar to the way in which they transported dynamite.

DempsyMac
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:32 PM
hey all Apple used to be really bad for this too, and for all I know still could be. I used to work for an Apple retailer and we used got two big pallets of boxes from Apple once on each pallet was AppleCare we thought it was an error as you could have put hundreds of those small AppleCare boxes on one pallet and we got two of them, well when you opened the first small box from the first pallet there was ONE AppleCare box in the bigger box. The funny thing was that the box that the AppleCare's were in would designed to fit 10 AppleCare boxes in.

Anyway we made a big stink about it to Apple but not sure if they ever fixed it or not.

screature
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:38 PM
hey all Apple used to be really bad for this too, and for all I know still could be. I used to work for an Apple retailer and we used got two big pallets of boxes from Apple once on each pallet was AppleCare we thought it was an error as you could have put hundreds of those small AppleCare boxes on one pallet and we got two of them, well when you opened the first small box from the first pallet there was ONE AppleCare box in the bigger box. The funny thing was that the box that the AppleCare's were in would designed to fit 10 AppleCare boxes in.

Anyway we made a big stink about it to Apple but not sure if they ever fixed it or not.

Certainly on the retail side of things Apple's packaging isn't excessive. Everything I have ever bought from them... which is a lot, has only ever had just enough packaging to keep the product safe from bump and grinds (;)) while in transit.

DempsyMac
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:42 PM
Certainly on the retail side of things Apple's packaging isn't excessive. Everything I have ever bought from them... which is a lot, has only ever had just enough packaging to keep the product safe from bump and grinds (;)) while in transit.

yes I totally agree but unfortunately the problem is that is not how they are shipped to retail stores, when you get them off the truck they don't look like how they are in the Apple Stores

screature
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:48 PM
yes I totally agree but unfortunately the problem is that is not how they are shipped to retail stores, when you get them off the truck they don't look like how they are in the Apple Stores

Funny how something like Apple Care boxes, which require no protection at all really, are shipped to the retailer with so much packaging. Could this example not just have been a mistake or was this something you saw regularly?

DempsyMac
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:49 PM
it happened many many times.

screature
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:54 PM
it happened many many times.

That's nuts. What about the packaging for things that actually require protection?

DempsyMac
Jun 30th, 2010, 12:57 PM
all computers except MacPro towers were always in an outer cardboard box so that when you took it off the inner box would look like (think about a white iMac box on all those conveyers and such it would look black when it got there.

MacBook boxes would be inside a plain box with Styrofoam around the inner white macbook box both for looks and extra padding.

I could go on but I should be working

ertman
Jun 30th, 2010, 05:48 PM
all computers except MacPro towers were always in an outer cardboard box so that when you took it off the inner box would look like (think about a white iMac box on all those conveyers and such it would look black when it got there.

MacBook boxes would be inside a plain box with Styrofoam around the inner white macbook box both for looks and extra padding.

I could go on but I should be working

I have ordered and received a macbook and a macbook pro from apple. The laptop boxes were in another box, but I would hardly call it excessive. The boxes were maybe a half in larger all around. I bet they ship them that way to avoid theft and excessive damage, as when they are shipped on pallets to retailers it is easier on the products.

As a consumer I received my apple care in one of those bubble wrap envelopes.

DempsyMac
Jun 30th, 2010, 05:54 PM
I would hope that they have changed the Applecare issue by now this was years ago that I speak of.

kps
Jul 1st, 2010, 04:14 PM
Hmmmm, let's see...

How about outsourcing your product distribution to a 3PL provider staffed by low payed part-time, casual and agency workers who are disposable and treated like crap.

Yeah, a bit over the top...but some truth to that.

Let's see if i can put together a more realistic list...it'll be a long one.

--Carrier placed conditions on shippers where packaging has to withstand certain rigours of transportation.

--Large shippers can't possibly stock every conceivable corrugated container for all their items. The cost, storage and utilization would be prohibitive.

--Carry several universal sizes in manageable quantities. xsmall-small-medium-large-xlarge-xxlarge. 3-5 sizes at most, plus some specialty.

--Re-packing / shipping station can only have a specific number of sizes and quantity of boxes. See below.

--repack station ran out of appropriate size box, shipper utilized next available size rather than waiting for resupply. Possibly due to time constraints.

--Time constraints for pick & ship cycle. Carrier departure schedules, order cut-off, staffing.

--under staffed or too many sick calls on a busy night = sloppy shipping.

--pick & ship cycle behind schedule, carriers waiting in docks = sloppy shipping

--poor employee training or no training at all.

--Low paid employee who really could care less.

--Idiot warehouse management. Poor processes and training, poor tools & materials, facility over capacity, scheduling issues, won't pay overtime under any circumstances, poor prediction of volumes, etc...

--Inaccurate information on pick-slip or wrong customer data. Some customers insist that everything be shipped on a pallet, including a small box. Usually union places where the fat assed receiver does not get off the forklift. In other words --off the truck and into the racks in one motion.

mguertin
Jul 1st, 2010, 08:31 PM
I got my $0.20 Rogers micro-sim today in a box big enough to hold a few paperbacks. While not way over the top I was very surprised to see it come in a box like that, figured it would have been in a tiny bubble pack envelope.

kps: Yep I've seen what you're talking about with palette requirements. At an old workplace we once had to ship out 25 replacements sheets -- sized of 8.5"x11" -- because a small handful were damaged in the original shipment of 25k+ sheets (the actual damaged sheets were more like 5 sheets but I digress). We were required to shrink wrap them onto a palette ... and it HAD to be shipped LTL otherwise the customer wouldn't accept it. Talk about overkill on all fronts!! It was actually surprisingly difficult to shrink wrap that small an amount of sheets onto a palette too!

kps
Jul 1st, 2010, 10:05 PM
mguertin, you should have crated it and placed steel banding 4-ways to the skid...lol

Examples of ingenious packaging to ship by air.

First example is someone shipping an expensive display. Sure, they could have shipped it in the manufacturer's original packaging, but what if the carrier placed it flat and loaded something on top of it? This person took the time to ship it right making sure this will not be laid flat. Note the final signage to the carrier..."Fragile as Eggs" lol

http://www.ikarl.com/pics/ehmac/frt-1.jpg

When your freight travels like this, EXPECT stacking! Empty space is lost revenue.

http://www.ikarl.com/pics/ehmac/frt-2.jpg

This is pure genius! A skid, a few 2x4s, some steel strapping and a crate with glass which can not be laid flat.

http://www.ikarl.com/pics/ehmac/frt-3.jpg

I wouldn't call any of this excessive...I'd call it smart.