Google and Logitech: Fool Me Once

November 12, 2011

I am not a TV person. We leave on financial shows and when something exciting happens, one of the goslings will turn up the sound. Otherwise, I ignore the boob tube. Some of the younger goslings at ArnoldIT are rich media wackos. TV on the mobile phone. TV on the iPad. Not me. In fact, I always wondered how the Google professionals would cope with TV. The medium is porky, serial, and generally superficial. The ads have appeal, but as audiences fragment, the value of blasting out a Chevrolet commercial becomes an unwieldy task. Explaining the payoff from TV advertising is also tricky. But it seems logical that selling TV ads is not that much different from selling online ads. No brainer, right? The search part, I assumed, would be a slam dunk. How tough is it to point to a TV show. A no brainer, right?

My knowledge of TV bumped up a notch when I read “Revue This: Logitech Is Done with Google TV after $100M Loss.” Here’s the passage I noted:

At a Logitech-hosted Investors Day event Wednesday, De Luca called the Revue a mistake that cost the company well over $100 million in operating profits. The company, he said, intends to allow the device’s current inventory levels to run out this quarter. It also has no plans to introduce another box to replace the Revue. As for why the Revue was a mistake, De Luca blames the Google TV software for not being ready at launch.

Yep, software. When a software company flubs on software for TVs or iPad apps, I ask, “What is management doing?”

Logitech may have learned the meaning of the idiom “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” TV, software, $100 million. Quite a mix.

Stephen E Arnold, November 12, 2011

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