Archive for the ‘biggest tech product failures’ Category

nasa space shuttle

Tuesday, August 7th, 2007

Nokia Communicator

Friday, August 3rd, 2007
Remember when cellphones were the size of a brick. That was 5 years before the original, brick-sized Nokia Communicator. Still, it was pretty cool to do almost everything that a blackberry does in the mid 90s.


Friday, August 3rd, 2007
Hawkins tripped up.


Friday, August 3rd, 2007
It has become the best ever argument for open standards. Betamax was smaller neater and better quality than VHS, it became the standard for professional broadcast video. But it failed in the consumer market because it was proprietary.

MiniDisc Players

Friday, August 3rd, 2007
It was smaller than a CD player, fitted in your pocket and could carry dozens of songs. It was released around the same time as the the things that fitted in your pocked and could hold dozens of thousands of songs.


Friday, August 3rd, 2007
Its your birthday, and you are 13, and you asked for an iPod, and you get a small, brown, warm, lump, called a Zune. Message to parents - don’t even think about it.

Apple Newton

Friday, August 3rd, 2007
Here’s the deal - men tend to buy gadgets and men don’t tend to carry handbags. When you design a personal organizer don’t make it something you cant carry around unless you have a handbag.

Part of the reason why Apple got everything so right with the iPod is that they realized that what they had gotten so wrong with the Newton was the form factor.

Windows Vista

Friday, August 3rd, 2007
It may seem a harsh to include Vista in this list. It surely hasn’t out long enough to be either a success or failure, and the reviews, while unspectacular, were hardly bad.

But that’s the point, Vista is both too little too late and too much too late. Too little in the sense that there isn’t a great deal that Vista does that either XP doesn’t do already or that OSX does better. Too much in the sense that computers are 10 thousand times faster and yet all Vista does with that is over animate the opening and closing of windows and over glossify the UI.

Above all, why is it that it took more than ten years to be able to search your own computer as quickly as all of the world’s public computers, combined, with an Internet search?


Friday, August 3rd, 2007
Its amazing, it has only two wheels yet it stands up on its own, and its called… a BICYCLE!
Enter Dean Kamen, a designer who took the massively successful 200 year old bicycle concept, moved the wheels so that they are along side each other and had to add thousands of dollars worth of state of the art electronics to stop it falling over.
The end result is a product that is to Ben Hur’s chariot, what a Lada is to a Lamborghini.
The Segway would be my choice for the worst designed tech. product of all time, because it is the epitome of the proverbial sledgehammer used to crack a nut. Good design is about elegance and simplicity, not unnecessary technical prowess.

Sinclair C5

Friday, August 3rd, 2007
If you are a professor type, like Clive Sinclair you probably don’t buy a car to be:

a.) pimped out like Vegas brothel and designed to go at 6 times the legal speed limit


b.) Built like a Sherman tank, so that in a collision other vehicles are vaporized while your kids are still in the back seat, happily playing eye spy.

Take one look at the C5 and try not to laugh.