Who Designed This Crap? The Latest Model: Innovation or Ripoff?

bgerber

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\"New\" is a word used too freely to describe mobile computer model upgrades. Buyers are often hurt both by significant real model changes that happen too quickly and by mostly bogus changes done for marketing purposes.
 

Windaria

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So basically... there are two really great products, and the company in each case came out with an even better one in a very short period of time... so you feel that they should have waited longer?

Boy I love Mr. Gerber's writing... yet another pointless article, this time written to cry about things getting better too fast? I mean in both cases you raved about the initial products, and sure as shooting, better ones come out...

Buyer's remorse maybe? And then to make a generic plea for the industry to slow down in the 3rd segment... my word. So companies like to market every possible little tiny thing as if it was the newest "must have". Yes, it is lame, but that is how they keep their brand image out there in the public, so whatever. Do I wish that they'd stop all this useless advertising and pass the savings onto me? Sure, but let's not cry about it.

I keep thinking that the word "Guru" in the name "Mobility Guru" means something along the lines of "inteligent", yet they keep putting out articles like this. Go figure.
 

zenmaster

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Its not the fault of these companies that newer, cheaper, better technology is coming out constantly. The differences may only be minor, but when I'm shopping to purchase a unit, I will buy the best one at that moment. If "Sony" or other manufacturer decides to keep 6-12month old technology, I will likely select the vendor with the brand new technology.

I'm sorry if the author or his friend feels bad because there is now a newer better model. Did the models they purchase function as advertised? Yes!!! The author even says he loved them. He is just complaining that the vendor was able to produce a newer better unit at the same price shortly after his purchase.

If the author had bought a printer and the manufacturer were to say "sorry" we do not make cartridges for that printer anymore, that was last months model, he would have a gripe because he could no longer use the printer for its intended use.

The author has lost nothing but bragging rights to the newest shiniest model.
 

Rashind

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This is ridiculous. The different-model-number-for-every-retailer phenomenon is real, that could have been the focal point of an entire article. The rest of the article is "Wah wah, my new toy isn't new anymore!"

You bought a micro portable PC in a proprietary form-factor. This is something you do with no expectation of upgradability. A new model is released. You are sad because your model is now 512 MB of RAM and 10 GB storage short of being top of the line. Welcome to Earth. Progress happens. If it happens faster than you'd like, maybe you need to get over your desire to have the latest and greatest, rather than expecting companies to hold back new and better tech to preserve your bragging rights for at least six months, which, by the way, is a figure pulled straight from the depths of your rectum, and I find it absolutely REPUGNANT that you would apply it as a normative timespan between technological advances.

Fact is: your computer is no worse than the day you bought it. If you're cheesed because you can't upgrade it, you need to learn a lesson about intelligent consumerism, and take upgradability into consideration WHEN YOU BUY, not after.

As for the laptop shell upgrade idea...

"Oh, Hello, here is my old car. Can you slap a 2007-model chassis on it?"

Please understand that you have bought what you have bought. If you're not comfortable with that, find someone to lease you all your computer equipment.
 

MAIA

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I can't help but to agree with the former comments. I find it ridiculous to question technological improvements over egoistical "geekness". I mean, why complaining about bringing better products faster than before ? There's no objective arguments to complain about such issue on any basis.

maia
 

lurk3r

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I didn't take his point to be complaining about advancemts. He was complaining about the poor market research done on $ony's part, and their complete lack of interest in supporting their 'old' product. If you dont want to pay top dollar for a product that will be obsolete before you get it home, stay away from $ony. I learned the hard way with a radio I purchased for $255, 6 months later the driver board for the cd was fried, a $ony authorized repair shop (yes out of warenty after 6 months) said the repair would be $650.

Yes the world keeps moving foreward and tech products are quickly replaced. I do sympathize with the writer though, and will never give $ony another dime.
 

zenmaster

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I didn't take his point to be complaining about advancemts. He was complaining about the poor market research done on $ony's part, and their complete lack of interest in supporting their 'old' product. If you dont want to pay top dollar for a product that will be obsolete before you get it home, stay away from $ony. I learned the hard way with a radio I purchased for $255, 6 months later the driver board for the cd was fried, a $ony authorized repair shop (yes out of warenty after 6 months) said the repair would be $650.

Yes the world keeps moving foreward and tech products are quickly replaced. I do sympathize with the writer though, and will never give $ony another dime.
I see no place in the article where he demonstrated any type of support failure by Sony. They simply started selling a new model. Sony decided to start offering more memory for the same price. Perhaps a cometitor started offering more memory. Perhaps the cost dropped. Perhaps the product was more successful than they imagined which let them produce more units which lowered production costs and allowed them to provide more for the same price. It is the consumer who purchased a non-upgradeable device. He is now asking for an upgrade. The poster can still run XP just fine like the product was intended to run. Now he wants to run Vista. This is not a Sony issue.

If he tried to get a warranty issue fixed and they said too bad, it would be a Sony issue. If they failed to maintain drivers or bios updates, that would be a failure. If he called with a question and they said sorry we cant help you that model is discontinued, he would have an issue. All he did is bemoan the fact a new model was now available. He knew he bought a non-upgradeable unit that had 512mb of RAM and 30gb of Diskspace.

There are many reasons why I don't buy bleeding edge. I wait for Rev2.
Folks learn whether it is hardware or software.

I am going to buy a Conroe. But not until the 2nd generation of motherboards. I can wait a few months. Perhaps the author could have waited for other reviews to come out and point out the things he missed such as non-upgradability. Perhaps he is mad at himself for failing to properly research his purchase. What he has not done is show that Sony failed in any way.
 

MAIA

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He was complaining about the poor market research done on $ony's part
If you are referring to this : "Sony should get more end user input before a product is released.", then the argument is useless. The UX180P was reviewed as a piece of incredible hardware. Just because a couple of months later, Sony launches an improved version: the UX280P, doesn't mean the UX180P has suddenly become a piece of junk. The "vista ready" argument is pure consumerism, less 512 Mb of memory and less 10Gb of disk space makes the UX180P "almost vista ready", what's the big deal ? I bet both can and will run vista with no problems. The real difference: you probably can't have as many programs installed or/and running at the same time. But that will only happen if you're the kind of person that likes to drown and clog a system. The other argument i can think of are bragging rights, again a subjective argument.

and their complete lack of interest in supporting their 'old' product.
The UX180P was developed has a new concept having in mind the size of its components, that's why it's so "cool". To achieve this objective, the whole architecture was created not relying in memory slots and disk plugs which would make it bigger, nullifying its main principle: small and compact. The UX280P was the next version having in mind that same objective but with a couple improvements. What's wrong with that ? I mean, technology development is not naturally retroactive. You might or might not bet on compatibility with older hardware, or even upgradeability, but it depends on the architecture you're dealing with, and this Sony micros are anything but retroactive. He should've thought of this when he bought the product, not after.

If you dont want to pay top dollar for a product that will be obsolete before you get it home, stay away from $ony.
Again, it will not become obsolete. It won't be the top of the top, and if you're a top tech "geek", it won't be the thing you'll be bragging about. But who really cares ? Do you think Sony or other company will listen to complains like this ? They just don't make any objective sense, much less nonsensical subjective arguments from a tiny part of the market.

maia
 

oplock

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Unfortuantly this is not just the case for the computer industry. In the television world a new model comes out right before every major holiday/sporting event. Maybe the new model has some new features or different inputs but more often than not it has a different colored cabinet or the newest firmware. For example, a manufacturer I cannot name has a plasma that is sold under their normal brand name for x numbers of dollars, then they take the same display, put a nicer bezel(front plastic cover) with their high brand name and sell it for about 2x's as much WITH THE SAME INSIDES, just a nicer cabinet.
 

michaelahess

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All companies are out to screw the consumer. That's just the way it is.

Profit comes WAY before customer satisfaction. Look at apple. I actually ordered a macbook a few weeks back after doing a lot of research (I need the mac/win ability) but one day after I ordered it I heard rumors that the core 2 due would come out in nov, dec, or jan. I immediately canceled the order as I can wait that long.

The point is, if these companies had ANY respect for the consumer they would give a heads up, "hey, by January we'll be using core 2 due" for example. This may lead to slightly lower sales for those who can wait, and most won't care btw. But it will give a feeling of caring to the consumer making them MORE likely to buy from a company that is up front and honest.

Sony is the worlds worst company in my opinion. Their products are crap and nothing they make ever lasts. At least in my experience. Look at any vaio or any of their "desktop" stereos'. POS's to the MAX!

Done bitch'n.
 

erikpurne

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I cannot fathom at what point the writer feels he was treated unfairly, and I'm overwhelmed with relief to see that most of you (by the way, what does lurk3r's gripe have to do with this?)- agree.

What a pair of whiny brats. I get annoyed just thinking about it. Imagine what must have been going through the dealer/Sony tech guy's head while being subjected to this balderdash. "Uh huh... And you feel we should replace your gadget with the newer one... why, exactly? Um... yeah. Well, I'm not sure about that."

Sheesh.

As for the other people's gripes: if the new model isn't that much better, or is too expensive to be good value, or just a holiday rehash of an existing product, then don't buy it. Simple, no?

I don't usually buy Sony products because they usually command a bit of a price premium for snazzier design or some other minor feature I don't have much use for. Some people do. More power to 'em.
 

lurk3r

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I see no place in the article where he demonstrated any type of support failure by Sony. They simply started selling a new model. Sony decided to start offering more memory for the same price.
from the article :
Back to Barry: My friend and I tried to get someone to do something about this mess. The UX180P was purchased from a Sony dealer who refused to take it back. Sony's highest level customer service people assured us that they felt my friend's pain, but that they couldn't do anything about it. It was up to the dealer. A most elegant example of finger pointing. They also noted that if the product had been bought from Sony's online or brick and mortar Style stores, the company might have been willing to take it back. To this day my friend likes to do a bit of finger pointing of his own when he passes a Sony portable in a store, but he points only with the second finger from the thumb.

Put simply Sony often leaves a trail of customer tears as it dashes merrily through the forests of product updates. Should it stop innovating? No, but it should introduce some sort of product upgrade program where a decent credit is offered to a buyer who wants to upgrade to this hour's latest and greatest. Even better, perhaps Sony should have patience in its product release cycle. If a newer product is a couple to a few months away, the company shouldn't introduce a less feature-filled version. Also, Sony should get more end user input before a product is released.
And to sum up my point, I'm not faulting Sony for their innovation, they are excellent at providing new products. I am never going to support them again because their stuff is obsolete before you open the package. The components to repair their products, which as someone earlier posted will never be worse than when you purchased them, are just not manufactured, or are way too expensive to repair.
 

zenmaster

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I'm sorry, but the fact that a newer better model is released does not make the product obsolete. In fact, if HP were to release a similar product with improved specs the Sony product would be just as "obsolete".

The product is just as capable.
The product will be obsolete when the OS and Software manufacturer's update their prodcuts so that the hardware in the Sony Unit can no longer handle common tasks that it could previously.

Comments on warranty or repair prices are a complete red herring and have nothing to do with the auhor's article.

My 8-track player is obsolete because music companies no longer make new 8-tracks. My Record player is obsolete because no new records are made. The CD player I bought 10 years ago is not obsolete because it is as functional today as it was then. Mind you there are newer better CD players, but it can still fully serve the purpose for which I bought it. As soon as all Music is only released on Blu-Ray, I will be obsolete.
(Work with me on the example guys - I know it's tough for some :>)
 

Whizzard9992

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He was complaining about the poor market research done on $ony's part
If you are referring to this : "Sony should get more end user input before a product is released.", then the argument is useless. The UX180P was reviewed as a piece of incredible hardware. Just because a couple of months later, Sony launches an improved version: the UX280P, doesn't mean the UX180P has suddenly become a piece of junk. The "vista ready" argument is pure consumerism, less 512 Mb of memory and less 10Gb of disk space makes the UX180P "almost vista ready", what's the big deal ? I bet both can and will run vista with no problems. The real difference: you probably can't have as many programs installed or/and running at the same time. But that will only happen if you're the kind of person that likes to drown and clog a system. The other argument i can think of are bragging rights, again a subjective argument.

and their complete lack of interest in supporting their 'old' product.
The UX180P was developed has a new concept having in mind the size of its components, that's why it's so "cool". To achieve this objective, the whole architecture was created not relying in memory slots and disk plugs which would make it bigger, nullifying its main principle: small and compact. The UX280P was the next version having in mind that same objective but with a couple improvements. What's wrong with that ? I mean, technology development is not naturally retroactive. You might or might not bet on compatibility with older hardware, or even upgradeability, but it depends on the architecture you're dealing with, and this Sony micros are anything but retroactive. He should've thought of this when he bought the product, not after.

If you dont want to pay top dollar for a product that will be obsolete before you get it home, stay away from $ony.
Again, it will not become obsolete. It won't be the top of the top, and if you're a top tech "geek", it won't be the thing you'll be bragging about. But who really cares ? Do you think Sony or other company will listen to complains like this ? They just don't make any objective sense, much less nonsensical subjective arguments from a tiny part of the market.

maia


Very well-said :!: Two thumbs up.

The problem with bleeding-edge technology is that it becomes obsolete quickly, and when you're sony, your product gets copied and sold at a cheaper price quickly. For sony to remain selling bleeding-edge products, they MUST release newer versions. The fact that Sony was able to upgrade the machine at the same price point is excellent.

You can't be an early adopter and then get upset when a newer and/or cheaper model comes out 6 months later. That's just stupid.

Oh, and you want your money back so you can buy the newer model? lol. Wow. The Sony store must laugh at you. Try e-bay.

If I spent my entire life waiting for the next upgrade for a product, I'd never buy anything. "Why get a Presler when Conroe is coming out? Why get C2D when CQD is coming out soon." At the same time, Sony needs to maintain product 'hype' and a presense in the marketplace. It's very typical, time-tested, and effective product strategy.


Yet again, another deplorable article, complaining about topics for which he provides no other perspective. Anyone who tracks sony products could've told you this was going to happen. I thought you were an expert?
 

Luscious

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The problem with bleeding-edge technology is that it becomes obsolete quickly, and when you're sony, your product gets copied and sold at a cheaper price quickly. For sony to remain selling bleeding-edge products, they MUST release newer versions. The fact that Sony was able to upgrade the machine at the same price point is excellent.

You can't be an early adopter and then get upset when a newer and/or cheaper model comes out 6 months later. That's just stupid.

Oh, and you want your money back so you can buy the newer model? lol. Wow. The Sony store must laugh at you. Try e-bay.

If I spent my entire life waiting for the next upgrade for a product, I'd never buy anything. "Why get a Presler when Conroe is coming out? Why get C2D when CQD is coming out soon." At the same time, Sony needs to maintain product 'hype' and a presense in the marketplace. It's very typical, time-tested, and effective product strategy.


Yet again, another deplorable article, complaining about topics for which he provides no other perspective. Anyone who tracks sony products could've told you this was going to happen. I thought you were an expert?
Totally Agree!

Being the first to buy the newest is the price you pay - ENJOY THE MOMENT!!!. When a newer/better model comes out, you quickly learn that owning something cool does not necessarily mean OWNING SOMETHING THAT'S COOL FOREVER!

My first example: Around two years ago I purchased a HP zd7000 laptop. Not because I wanted to, but because my trusty compaq presario laptop kicked the bucket and couldn't be repaired, and also because I really liked the zd's 17inch screen and full keyboard. Needless to say, within 1 month a newer zd8000 series was released at the same price with better GPU, CPU etc... Was I pissed off - yes of course! Do I regret my purchase - no. I'm still using it happily today, and the zd8000 is now long obsolete (even its successor the dv8000 has been replaced).

What I learned was this: Be happy with what you have knowing that it will work well. When it does die, you will be happy again to be able to buy something 3 generations cooler than what you cried about way back then.

Second example: Sony camcorder. When they introduced the microMV line I was amazed at how small it was and immediately wanted to get a DCR-IP7BT. Unfortunately, my wallet was not thick enough at the time, and spent the next 18 monts or so waiting to get enough money together and hoping the price would go down. FORTUNATELY, I was able to read a pretty good review of the product online, which expressed a lot of the flaws and bugs I did not previously know.

Eventually I purchased a newer version, the DCR-IP1, for a great price, with a ton of extras and a five year warranty. Right before Sony decided to scrub the format altogether.

Was I disappointed - no way!. I was happy finally getting something that I wanted for so long, getting a better model than what I originally saw, and getting it while it was still available. In fact, from what I can tell, there is still nothing on the market that can beat this in size/performance, and for me that was the winner.

Buy something that you want and like, and when you do just enjoy it. The fact that newer and better gear comes along will not put a dent in your pride if you enjoy using what you already own and it makes you happy.
 

captainlooney

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It's just a fact of innovation, I mean I'm gonna be severely regretful I didn't wait 1 more year to get the 2007 G35 Coupe, instead I got the 2006. But hey, I got a year to enjoy the "new toy" so to speak, so it's a trade off, something new is always gonna come out, it's all weighing in opportunity costs. You could technically wait for newest item to come out only to find yourself waiting for something newer than that new item and so on... In that case, when are you actually going to own anything? Be happy with what you got, and not mope about what you don't have, it'll save you alot of grief.
 

r0x0r

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All companies are out to screw the consumer. That's just the way it is.

Profit comes WAY before customer satisfaction. Look at apple. I actually ordered a macbook a few weeks back after doing a lot of research (I need the mac/win ability) but one day after I ordered it I heard rumors that the core 2 due would come out in nov, dec, or jan. I immediately canceled the order as I can wait that long.

The point is, if these companies had ANY respect for the consumer they would give a heads up, "hey, by January we'll be using core 2 due" for example. This may lead to slightly lower sales for those who can wait, and most won't care btw. But it will give a feeling of caring to the consumer making them MORE likely to buy from a company that is up front and honest.

Sony is the worlds worst company in my opinion. Their products are crap and nothing they make ever lasts. At least in my experience. Look at any vaio or any of their "desktop" stereos'. POS's to the MAX!

Done bitch'n.
Calm down sonny Jim, there's worse than Sony. As you said, look at Apple. That's something bgerber forgot; the iPod. The gen 6 iPod isn't an update so much as an evolution in mediocrity.
 

michaelahess

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Don't get me started on the iPods, my pda is more capable, just about as small and just as lite. Who needs their ENTIRE music library with them all the time?????
 

r0x0r

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Don't worry, I can't stand them either. I don't hate the product (it's just an inamimate object after all), just the fact that so many people are wasting money on it when there's better stuff for less cash.
 

michaelahess

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Which of course fuels the corporate giants to come out with more wasteful devices hoping they catch on like the iPod, stupid consumers make everything cost more for us, the average consumer, and make the ceo's of giant corporations richer. Seriously, who need billions of dollors, or hundreds of millions for that matter? America is almost as bad as Russia used to be, a few wealthy, and the rest are just trying to scrape by. Now if only the corporations would pay their employees for what they are worth....sure profits would go down but the world would be a happier place, and nobody would miss the billionares.
 
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