Product Improvements Outpacing Even Planned Obsolescence?

from the perhaps dept

We've written a few times in the past about how your memory isn't fooling if you if you think today's gadgets and gizmos are built with lower quality than consumer electronics from years gone by. Part of the reason is simply planned obsolescence, where companies are innovating so much they expect you to simply upgrade when the last one you bought breaks. However, a new article suggests that even planned obsolescence is a thing of the past as the pace of innovation is such that people feel compelled to upgrade relatively quickly, not waiting for their gadgets to break. The main focus of the article, though, is how this presents quite the conundrum for consumer electronics buyers, who always know that what they buy today will be a lot cheaper tomorrow. Of course, it's not really clear how that's any different than how things used to be. People have always struggled with the timing on when to buy computers or consumer electronics, knowing that there was always a next generation coming, and today's products would just get cheaper. However, if you wait until the next generation is released, you should realize that you're only going to be tempted to buy the newer, fancier one anyway.
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  1. identicon
    Tyshaun, 2 Jan 2007 @ 10:13am

    how about this...

    I wonder why companies don't move towards a subscription model some hardware (especially hardware that gets updated often like cell phones). For X dollars per year you have access to a "family" of products. As the next model in a family comes out, you have the option of getting it or not.

    Me, personally, I never buy a product for it's features, I buy the product with the features I need. If people did this, then part of the problem is solved. When buying a product I sit down and list what features I need, then by the product with all or the features I need (at the cheapest price).

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