Yesterday, a colleague bought a beautiful phone for his better half. Super excited about it, he started describing it to me.. How the body was all metal, the sleek look, the amazing camera... Perfectly meeting all his criteria and not so heavy on the pocket! Great!!
I am truly happy for he and his wife are satisfied with the product, but the conversation got me thinking... There was a gap in this discussion.. A significant aspect remained untouched which was bothering me...
When we go to a restaurant and order our favourite pasta, what are we really looking for? The taste that lasts on our tongue or the sight? When I walk out of the restaurant and meet a friend on my way back home, would I say, "Man! What a good looking pasta I had.." Our would I be pointing out its taste?
The point being.. When we purchase a technology, why does our consideration revolve around looks so much? I mean a pasta should look good... To satisfy our sight and to make us want to enjoy it.. But what if the beautiful looking pasta tastes like potty? Consider a pasta, not so beautifully presented, but with orgasmic taste!! Hmmm... Which one would you prefer? :)
Technology is just the same.. We call them smart phones.. Not sexy phones for a reason! The reason being, it's a piece of technology.. Looks, the feel, add to the overall experience but finally it's major value lies in the technology.. The chipset, the RAM, the pixel density.. You know.. But then we can finish off a not so good looking pasta and satisfy our stomachs, just thinking about the taste and not the looks.. But, we would have to carry around a OK looking phone, if we go only by its specs!
So like everything in the world, this also has a trade-off element.. However, I find, looks compensate for the lack of performance! This is what has been bothering me!
Have you seen the VW Beetle? It's ugly! Powerful, fantastic, but ugly. VW advertised it as the ugly car and it was the in-thing! So I come to believe that if I have a ugly looking, good product, marketing skills come in handy to make it sell.. Difficult, but possible.
As a marketer, it's much easier to have a good looking product with low performance, which manages to leave a fine impression on the oblivious target audience! Wallah! Did we just crank the code? Why the market is flooded with cheap good looking phones? But no.. This is no secret. People are no fools... They just choose looks over content. No wonder I'm single!
Anyways, lets extrapolate this fact.. If I choose the alternate, I am a nerd! So uncool!
I recently bought a car, Japanese tech! And while I was considering a lot many options, European, Indian, French and what not, I received a lot of suggestions to go for a particular Korean car, which was beautiful. I considered it, read the specs, saw the review videos and to my surprise, the car was shit! It was super low on mileage, owing to bad design technology, it was bad in handling, had major body roll and was unreasonably priced, just because it was actually the most good-looking car in the market! And here were my fellow smart-ass friends who aspired to own this car!
A car is a piece of technology! It has to run, perform, be by your side when you travel distances, take the beating of time and yet stand tall! Which is why cars are our first loves! But then again, people around me saw more sense in the hot blonde than the kind, considerate girl next door! I thankfully did not change my mind... And I am in love.. with my car!
But is this approach restricted to technology? Or are we headed to a point of time where presentation scores over content?
How many potential employees are deprived of worthy promotions due to the flamboyant fool who impressed the bosses? How many true lovers taste the dust because this other bitch had hotter legs or this other jerk had a cuter smile?
It all boils down to a simple thought. Priority. What do we prioritise? A simple, happy life or a life we could flaunt to people who don't matter?
I guess I'll leave it that that... :) Much fodder for thought!