Sunday, February 27, 2005



The Fine Art Of Stripping Features

With the ubiquitously discussed flashing VCR clock in mind, the idea of having entirely too many features on entirely too many technology products seems to be an important one. And, with buyers flocking in droves for a few starkly-featured, near-simplistic tech products these days (the iPod comes to mind), is it time to stop the feature creation train?

Talk to any "normal" people (i.e., people who are not obsessed with the minutia of the latest tech trend), and you'll quickly realize that most people are thinking, "Enough is enough!" when it comes to buttons, switches, menu items, and the other interface clutter that increasingly marks today's tech products. From cell phones, to DVD/VCR/AV gear, to car stereos, to the personal computer itself, there appears to be a major rejection underway: people just want a product to do what it is advertised as doing, simply, and without hassle.

Why are more companies not seeing this buyer desire, and tailoring their newest products to hit this "Keep it simple" market opportunity?

2 Comments:

Blogger Wayne Smallman said...

"Talk to any "normal" people (i.e., people who are not obsessed with the minutia of the latest tech trend), and you'll quickly realize that most people are thinking, "Enough is enough!" when it comes to buttons, switches, menu items, and the other interface clutter that increasingly marks today's tech products."

It's easy to see why people are overwhelmed by features.

The technology companies think that choice and a plethora of features engenders desire.

To some extent, the notion isn't inconsistent with the expectation of the consumer.

Where the added-value of a broad feature set ends and consumer confusion & frustration begins is when there is little or no ergonomic rigor applied to said gizmo.

Then the fun begins!

I've bookmarked your 'blog in my browser, so I'll no doubt be back.

I also run a tech' 'blog. So if you're bored, you can always deepen your mental malaise by reading my stuff instead!

4:45 AM, March 29, 2005  
Blogger BC said...

I love tech and all that is has to offer, but enough is enough. I recently bought a new wireless phone that I love, but will never use all the features. I think manufatures need to concentrate on making quality products & not "feature stuffing"

Brent Cannon]
house-o-geek.blogspot.com

11:06 AM, March 30, 2005  

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