“This site may not be safe to use,“ according to ScamAdvisor.com. It rates the HDZoom360 trust level “Low.”
On May 20, 2017 let’s zoom in on HDZoom360 (red links are risky; do not click). There may be nothing illegal or wrong with the following business practices. But they suggest that the seller is not to be trusted. I’m using my Scam-O-Meter scoring system; -1 means true, +1 means false, and 0 means undetermined. A reminder; I penalize the seller for statements made by shills.
Ridiculous claims: -1
- “Adjustable focal length.” This feature is the reason why it’s called a “Zoom lens.”
- “The power of a $4,000 DSLR in your pocket,” boasts the HDZoom360 outfit in a review of itself. There are important differences other than the lens between a phone and a real camera, particularly a $4,000 camera.
- “Christie from Dallas went to Africa last summer, and she had an epic trip.” Should I believe Christie sprang for a safari without bringing a real camera?
Suspicious location: -1. 19-21 Crawford Street, Dept 706, London, W1H 1PJ is a mailbox. It’s shared with TV Frog (FreeSeeTV), another line of business of Strong Current Enterprises.
Onerous terms: -1
- They don’t guarantee that the lens is fit for any use; nor that anything they say is true.
- You have 30 days from the day you receive the lens to return it unused for a refund.
- You have to ship a lens you’re returning to a PO box in the Netherlands at your expense. In 30 days?
Ads, spam, robocalls: +1. You can opt in to receive email; you can opt out.
Lying and deception: -1
- Um, about that safari, Christie … “Check out my image using the HDZoom360 at at Nairobi National Park in Kenya:” Wow, what a gorgeous shot of the late, well-known Cecil the lion! But in 2015 he was killed in Zimbabwe, which is about 2,000 miles from Kenya.
- “Uses a ‘NASA optical formula’ with ‘genuine glass aspheric lens’ that’s superior to professional camera equipment worth thousands of dollars.” But in Wikipedia I read that since 1956 “Aspheric elements are often used in camera lenses.“
- Genuine glass?
- The lens is described as an 8x18 zoom lens. The expression 8x refers to the ratio of the lens’ longest to shortest focal lengths. But the following numerals “18” don’t mean anything.
- Careful with that order form; a quantity of three lenses ($132) is already filled in.
- Count-down timer, implying that you don’t have time to make a careful decision.
Phony reviews: -1. The scam site features lots of tweets and reviews by people without full names.
Crummy product: -1. Cindy posted on ScamAdvisor.com, “Every time you touch the zoom to focus it it falls off the camera. Waste of money!!!”
Overpriced: -1. Amazon doesn’t carry it. But they offer several similar zoom lenses, such as this 12x model for $15.
75% discount: +1. False.
Total score; -6
Unauthorized charges: CREDIT CARD RISK ALERT
- Ripoff Report carries this complaint; “I Ordered 1 HDZoom360 lens for $43.99 and was offered a second one for the same price plus lifetime warranty at $13.20 each total cost about $113.00. However $290.00 has been debited to my credit card.“
- Cindy also posted, “It is a scam, I bought one they charged me for two.“
- HDZoom360 accepts PayPal.
Conclusion: Avoid. If you must have this type of lens, buy it from Amazon or another reputable seller in the United States.
Bonus outtakes: I think I see why this scammer doesn’t have a real job: 240 – 44 = 196. 196 / 240 = 82%, not 45%.