Only mildly scammy compared to some sites I’ve covered, but still a dubious choice on January 21, 2017, Ultrabeam Lasers (red links are evil) deserves their own post. And this is it!
Ridiculous claims: -1
- 70% discount, very close to the magic scammer-detecting discount. And on Page 2 it changes to 75%, sounding the alarm.
- “Whether you find yourself in a natural disaster or just alone in a strange place, this laser is worth the peace of mind it will bring.” What does this sentence mean?
- “A great addition to your emergency survival kit if you get lost or stranded.” Okay, it would make your kit heavier, so it wouldn’t blow away. But wait, it’s “(A) light or a means to generate a fire or signal a rescue team.” How about matches in a bottle, and yelling? No batteries required.
- “It comes with the maximum legal wattage making it the world’s strongest laser.” Actually, US law sets no limit on laser power; it merely prohibits advertising lasers of more than 5mw as “laser pointers.” Ultrabeam doesn’t disclose their laser’s wattage. I found similar-looking lasers that claim between 200mw and 2000mw; see “Overpriced” below.
- Can burn an eyeball, light a match or pop a balloon in seconds. There’s cheaper, faster ways to light matches and pop balloons. As for eyeballs, no mugger is going to stand there while you attempt laser surgery on his eyeball.
- Starting a fire is hard if “The wood is damn, it is windy or it is raining.” Hahaha!
Post Office box: 0. Both addresses are office buildings, instead of the typical UPS store. But how odd that the addressee is “NightHawkGear,” not “UltraBeam.” And odder still, “Fetch Deals, Inc.” is handling their mail. I’m scoring this one “Undetermined.”
- Corporate Address: Fetch Deals, Inc., Attn: NightHawkGear.com, 228 Park Ave S # 29051, New York, NY 10003-1502
- Returns Address: Fetch Deals, Inc. Attn: NightHawkGear.com, 31 East 32nd Street, 1202, New York, NY 10003
Fetch-Cash.com and Cal-EZ Vitamins also enjoy the use of this address.
Onerous terms: -1
- If your product arrived broken, they’ll accept a return for a refund within 30 days of your receiving the product.
- You have to return the product unopened and unused, or be charged a 20% restocking fee. So, how do you tell if it’s broken?
- They don’t guarantee that their products are suitable for any use; nor that anything they say is true.
- You can’t sue them, or join a class action that’s suing them. Fallback position; you have to go to New York to sue them.
Ads, spam, robocalls: -1
- They’ll use all the information you give them, plus all they can suck out of your browser, to beam ads at you, spam you and robocall you.
- They’ll share it with other companies that will do the same.
- You can unsubscribe by clicking “Unsubscribe” in an email or by writing a letter.
Lying and deception: +1. None found. Some stretchers, tho.
- Who are these people? UltraBeam, FalconV2, NightHawkGear, or Fetch Deals Inc.? Apparently they aren’t Falcon Flashlights; that outfit is based in Oregon. The TOS is headed NightHawk, Fetch Deals and NightHawkGear.com.
- You have to drill through three pages to find out the price ($49).
- The first page has a picture of a countdown timer to make you think you’ve got to hurry; but the timer isn’t animated.
Phony reviews: -1. Vague, wildly enthusiastic reviews by people you never heard of. The reviews have prominent buttons that take you to the vendor’s order form. These reviewers get a cut of every sale made thru their link; so they’re really just advertising. I rather enjoyed the review by The Tactical Pros, who write “The moment it was released into the market, its sales soared and they keep running out of stock because these military grade ones are hard to find.” WellnessSaying.com enthuses, “Since it is useful in lighting matches so you can keep it when you have plans to enjoy the night in the forest.” Or you could just strike the match? None of these shills knows how powerful the laser is, either.
Crummy product: 0. I couldn’t find an honest review. If you have one of these lasers and don’t want it, send it to me and I’ll test the $hi7 out of it.
Overpriced: -0. Without knowing the $49 Ultrabeam laser’s power, it’s hard to comparison shop. Amazon doesn’t carry Ultrabeam. What I found:
- LaserPointerPro offers a similar-looking 1000mw “laser pointer” for $79.99.
- Shadowhawk has a similar-looking 2000mw “Laser Saber” for $56. (Shadowhawk is a notorious scammer; don’t go there.)
- HTPOW sells a similar-looking 1000mw “extremely powerful laser pointer,” $106.
- Big Lasers has a similar-looking 200mw “laser pointer” for $90 (out of stock). Guess you can’t go by looks!
Unauthorized charges: +1. I found no reports of this.