eFileCabinet has had a marvelous year in the world of product releases: From a revamped version of our cloud based, online document management software to the release of the SideKick in January 2016, we’re proud to have a product base meeting the needs of an ever-changing organizational world—uplifting, assisting, and emboldening the business process.
Although this success has generated great responsibility, it has also encouraged us to look at the products that would have been—commemorating the valiant efforts that, for whatever reason, did not quite catch on. So without further ado, here are the 5 biggest product fails in the history of technology:
Microsoft webtv Plus
Although Microsoft had the right idea in the mid-1990s with a product extension that offered consumers access to their Internet via television, the marketing and branding of the product itself flopped, leading to dismal results for this software giant.
Additionally, due to many software bugs and customer service related issues, Microsoft never took this product past the 1 million subscribers mark.
An attempt to fast-follow Apple’s invention of the iPod, the Microsoft Zune, at its peak, still held under 40% of the market share in this space. Many software and technology pundits claim that the failing of this product can be attributed to its lack of user friendliness, including its poorly developed user interface.
Do note, however, that many tech product fails aren’t necessarily produced by poor technology, but rather an attempt to imitate Apple products—which, at the time, had an impenetrable stronghold on the consumer tech market.
The Sony Betamax Recorder
The Betamax video recorder saw its advent in the mid-1970s. However, shortly thereafter, the VHS video recorder was released, and several other companies started marketing and selling these VHS products with better speed-to-market presence than Sony had anticipated.
Ultimately, the Sony Betamax Recorder’s system compatibility issues led consumers to shy away from the product, securing its foothold in the annals of failed tech products.
Introduced at the beginning of the mobile consumerism era, this mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) flopped worse than its Disney Mobile counterpart. The idea behind this technology was, at least as we understand it today, to lease access to Verizon and offer access to ESPN media through one single device.
The fundamental flaw was an issue of convenience it seems: Who would purchase a device providing access to only one category of content when there were plenty of devices offering access to any category of content the viewer wished to see? Sheesh.
High Definition DVDs
A highly promising venture sponsored primarily by Toshiba, this product was positioned to become the big brother, high-definition version of the DVD upon its scheduled launch date in March 2006.
However, Sony was already on the case with its Blu-ray technology. The results? Warner Brothers kissed High Definition DVDs goodbye, falling into the more intelligent arms of the beautiful Blu-ray. Not exactly a storybook love story, but an important one nonetheless.
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