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Frequently Asked Questions

What makes Curvature the undisputed global leader and most trusted source for independent, multi-vendor support?

Curvature is an industry leader in new and pre-owned equipment and third-party maintenance support solutions. Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, the Company is a strategic partner for more than 15,000 organizations globally, specializing in delivering 24/7 global technical support, advanced hardware replacement, and complete lifecycle management of networking and data center equipment under one contract. Founded in 1981, Curvature provides global organizations quality and reliable networking and data center equipment, solutions, and services with access to personalized technical and sales support from more than 100 staffed service centers worldwide.  


What types of organizations buy pre-owned equipment from Curvature and what do they primarily use it for?

Curvature has sold pre-owned equipment to more than 15,000 organizations, spanning Fortune 500 companies, small- and mid-sized businesses, telecommunications service providers, financial institutions, government entities, educational institutions and healthcare organizations. Worldwide, Curvature’s largest vertical segments are telecommunications and technology integrators. Most of the equipment, including deployments in carrier networks where uptime is essential, is used in production environments. While some organizations buy equipment from Curvature for sparing, testing and disaster recovery applications, the majority use the equipment to support front-line service and network expansions. In fact, a recent survey of 400 Curvature customers found that almost 80 percent of purchases were for production network use followed by 66 percent implemented for network expansion projects.

What are the differences between “pre-owned”, “refurbished” and “used” equipment? What do “new surplus”, “new/open box” and “new/in box” mean?

Curvature considers all equipment it sells as “pre-owned,” meaning originally it was sold by the manufacturer or an authorized reseller and now is being resold. Some of our inventory is used and some equipment has been resold without being used. All Curvature’s used equipment has undergone full inspection, cleaning, testing and reconditioning to return the equipment to as close to original condition as possible. In some cases, equipment requires minor repairs or cosmetic improvement, and is then designated as “refurbished” Our goal is to return equipment to “like new” condition while offering exceptional savings of between 50 and 90 percent off manufacturers’ list prices.

“New-surplus” equipment has never been used and may also be described in terms of the condition of its packaging. Equipment that is “new/open box” can range in condition from mint to two or more years old, already resold multiple times, but has never been used. “New/in box” typically denotes the product is from the manufacturer’s distribution channel with its original tape unopened. In either of these cases, Curvature opens the boxes to verify the contents and ensure equipment meets specifications. As Curvature does not sell any new products, both of these instances would be considered “pre-owned” in our vernacular.

What types of equipment are available on the secondary market?

Today, almost any kind of server, storage and networking equipment can be found for sale on the secondary market. Curvature’s inventory is typically driven by current market demand, so the company aggressively pursues the top 100-to-200 products in order to provide customers with the most popular equipment models within 24-to-48 hours. With its extensive resources and contacts throughout many vertical markets, Curvature is typically able to deliver even specialized or hard-to-find items within five to seven days.

Where does Curvature get its equipment?

Curvature gets most of its equipment from the same companies that are also its customers. When a company upgrades their environment, cancels a project or closes a location, Curvature will buy its surplus equipment or take it as credit toward a purchase. We also source equipment from systems integrators who may purchase gear for a client only to see the project cancelled or changed, as well as other used equipment resellers.

What type of warranty does Curvature provide on the equipment it sells?

Curvature understands that networks are mission critical for any business, and our warranty is designed with uptime in mind. Curvature offers a true lifetime warranty on all pre-owned manufacturer-branded equipment and all new Curvature-branded equipment. For as long as you own the equipment, if you experience equipment failure, our technical engineering support teams will either solve your problem over the phone or immediately send a replacement unit for next-business-day delivery.


What kind of maintenance program does Curvature offer?

Curvature is recognized as the global top performer for independent support for network, server and storage equipment across your entire IT infrastructure. We provide consistent results while retaining the agility to meet the ever-changing needs of our customers. Our mission is to enable IT freedom to our customers by removing pain points and identifying areas to improve both quality and efficiency throughout our relationship.

Network Maintenance- Our 24/7 support of router, switch, and wireless networking devises including parts, labor and remote technical support.

Server Maintenance- Our server maintenance solutions span from complex, legacy servers down to industry servers (x86) with options such as call-home monitoring and software support. Our delivery is over 95% direct globally, with less than 5% requiring assistance through partners.

Storage Maintenance- Our storage maintenance provides comprehensive break/fix support, spanning most hardware platforms from leading manufacturers. We provide consistent results while retaining agility to meet the ever-changing needs of our customers. Our storage maintenance solutions cover brand name like Dell EMC, NetApp, Hitachi, IBM, HPE, and includes call-home monitoring and optional software support.

What are the benefits of purchasing pre-owned equipment?

The key benefits are substantial savings and expedited delivery. Companies buying pre-owned equipment can save as much as 75 percent off manufacturers’ list prices. When dealing with Curvature, another clear benefit it being able to receive expedited product shipments. In a time when manufacturers may take 10 to 80 days to fulfill orders, Curvature can achieve same day shipping on most in-stock products.

Is counterfeit a big problem? How does Curvature handle it?

There is counterfeit equipment in the market, particularly with dominant brands like Cisco, but Curvature has seen counterfeiting decrease in recent years. Today, the most commonly counterfeited items are lower-value modules like PIX cards and GBICs. In the effort to eradicate counterfeit equipment, Curvature has a Counterfeit Abatement Program (CAP). CAP includes a strict methodology for identifying suspect equipment, quarantining it for detailed inspection, documenting evolving counterfeiting techniques and maintaining a comprehensive knowledgebase used by Curvature quality technicians globally to ensure that all equipment is authentic and meets factory specifications. To help fight this battle industry-wide, Curvature is a founding member of UNEDA (the Used Networking Equipment Dealer Association). Part of this organization’s charter is to help ensure that counterfeit detection practices are shared among all the 300+ members. Awareness among resellers and customers is the best way to fight counterfeiters.

Why do I need Curvature’s maintenance offering? Doesn’t the Curvature Lifetime warranty have me covered?

Many people think that a lifetime product warranty eliminates the need for a maintenance and support contract. In some cases this may be true, but warranty, maintenance and support contracts are different and provide varying levels of support.

A Curvature maintenance contract goes well beyond a standard warranty. When IT professionals talk about service contracts, a significant part of that discussion involves product replacement timeframe. Curvature offers varying levels of advanced hardware replacement timeframes including next-business-day, 4-hour, and onsite spare. These options are all available 24x7 while the standard warranty is limited to 8x5. So, if you have critical network infrastructure that requires fast hardware replacement, regardless of the time or day of the week, Curvature maintenance support is a must-have component of your network strategy.

The technical support available to our maintenance customers is also superior to our standard warranty support. Curvature technical support is available 24/7, with a 30-minute response guaranteed, and includes troubleshooting and configuration support. Our standard warranty support is 8x5 and is limited to verifying that the hardware has failed and authorizing an RMA. Of course, if in the process of verifying that the hardware has failed our network engineers find that the cause of the issue is not hardware failure, they will provide that information to the customer and help them to resolve the issue.

The quick response you get with our maintenance program can dramatically speed up the time required to remedy a network problem, whether due to a failed device or a configuration issue. This can mean significant savings in both time and money for your business.

Why does Curvature need information about the modules and cards in my router or chassis for my maintenance contract?

In order for Curvature to appropriately stock all of the hardware our customers have under their maintenance and support contracts, we need to know exactly what you have in each chassis or router. This also has a cost advantage to you. Instead of charging a flat price for a chassis, like Cisco does with SMARTnet, we can lower our price according to exactly what you have in each chassis.


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