Gadget Makers Face Identity Crisis
September 9, 2012
The problem of convergence is now upon the slew of gadget makers in the tech world. HP and Samsung are just two companies that are part of a growing trend of “hybrid PCs” which are attempting to combine tablets and laptops. A Fast Company article, “HP, Samsung Face Identity Crisis With Tablet-Laptop Hybrids,” shares the woes of these purpose-confused devices. The makers of the products are attempting to ensure that consumers know that these are not simply tablets with removable keyboards, which they are.
The article asserts:
“Apple, from its perch high above as the top seller of tablets, has avoided this problem altogether, and watched as its competitors have struggled to differentiate their products. ‘Anything can be forced to converge,’ Apple CEO Tim Cook [said.] ‘The problem is that the [converged] products are about tradeoffs: You begin to make tradeoffs to the point where what you have left at the end of day is not pleasing to anyone. Some people will prefer to have both [together], but to make the compromise of convergence–we’re not going to that party. Others might, but we’re going to play them both [separately].’
Added Cook, ‘You can converge a toaster and a refrigerator, but those things are not going to be pleasing to the user.’”
The identity crisis in the gadget world leaves consumers confused and unsure of what is really necessary for their needs. Vendors trying to solve the problem by combining products may overwhelm their target audience. If Mr. Cook is correct, these vendors are in for a long 2013.
Andrea Hayden, September 09, 2012