Its Not a Consumer Product Without a Price and Date

Consumers don’t have long memories so I am always baffled when companies introduce products long before their ship dates or even without stating ship dates.  Also, consumers need to know price to help them with their purchase consideration.

So, I was amazed when I opened USA Today on July 22nd and saw a review of the Dell Streak in Ed Baig’s consumer tech column which said “Availability: Dell won’t say but indicates the Streak is coming very soon” and “Price: That’s also a Dell secret for now…”

Why would they let one of the two most important consumer tech writers in the world cover a product that consumers can’t buy and not even give them a clue of the price or when it is coming?  Just does not make sense from a consumer sales/marketing/experience point of view.

Its unclear even today (two weeks later) if its available.  There are reviews on Dell’s site but the page still says “The Dell Streak will be available for purchase soon.”

On the other hand…

This past Tuesday, RIM held an event to introduce a new phone.  Over the past few years RIM has been getting better and better at focusing on consumers–with things like product names (Curve, Pearl, etc.) rather than just model numbers.

In fact they have changed so much that the headline and lead of one article about the announcement said “RIM attempts to create Apple-like buzz with BlackBerry Torch event” and “In an uncharacteristic move, Research in Motion held a media event Tuesday in New York City to generate buzz for its new BlackBerry Torch 9800 smartphone.”

What else did they do different than Dell?  According to the article. “The device will be available exclusively on the AT&T network starting August 12. It carries a $199 price with a standard two-year contract.”

That’s the way to introduce a product: With a DATE AND PRICE!