What is OEM?

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What is OEM? ‘“ Few Facts on OEM Products

People often hear the word OEM. What does OEM stand for? OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer. Oftentimes, OEM is mistaken for a company that has exclusive affinity with computer producers. In fact, OEM sells its product to another company for resale. The reseller company will then sell the OEM product under their own brand.

To understand it better, Company X is the OEM and Company Y is the reseller. Company X will sell its product to Company Y. Company Y will resell Company X’s product under Company Y’s brand name. Today, OEM products are being incorporated by resellers to their own products and are sold under their own brand name.

OEM products can be classified as hardware and software. OEM hardware is anything that refers to physical parts, which are usually computer components. On the other hand, OEM software is any software that comes along with computer hardware for bundling purposes. OEM software is the one you see bundled with your digital camera, printer or scanner upon purchase.

To distinguish OEM product, it is usually sold without the retail packaging. These types of products are sold in large amounts. Selling and buying in large amounts or in bulk helps reduce the cost on the part of the reseller. As mentioned earlier, OEM products lack all retail packaging. Moreover, hardware products might have missing components such as cables or software and including instructions sheet.

OEM products are different from retail products in several ways.


As mentioned earlier, OEM products lack all packaging. The only packaging OEM products have is just anti-static plastic bag. Retail products are complete with packaging. Retail products come up with a box, sealed and branded.

Accessories or Attachments

OEM products come as a product alone without any peripherals. Retail products usually contain all the necessary peripherals for full functionality. Peripherals would include the drive cables, instructions manual, software and warranty cards or certificates.


Due to the packaging issue, OEM products will have a major advantage over retail products. Packaging can add up to the cost of any product. Since OEM products lack the packaging feature, sellers can cut off huge amount of cost.

Warranty Handling

Majority of retail products have well defined terms and conditions for service and support. These products often have longer warranty period. If a buyer encounters a problem with the product, seeking support will be easy. However, OEM products have limited support and shorter warranties. This is for the reason that OEM products are supposed to be parts of a whole package. Therefore, the retailer must provide the support and service for the whole package.

Whether the product is OEM or retail, it is still up to the buyer, which he/she would prefer. There is nothing wrong in buying OEM products as well as retail products. The only difference is how comfortable is the buyer regarding the terms of service and support for the product. Buyers just need to be careful when buying online. It is because sellers use the same product designation for both OEM and retail products.

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