Are you an iSheep?
If you are not aware of the campaign, Sandisk ran an advertisement against customers, not against a competitor. It insinuated that anyone who bought Apple products was an iSheep. The problem of course is that it alienated a large segment of their would-be customer base in doing so. That, and Sansa have changed tracks now, no longer supported open source firmware, and farming their own OS which is really, really rubbish.
Anyway, an iSheep wouldn't be looked down upon at this site (as I am one), but it is food for thought: do you buy a product because of its marque? Or, do you buy because of its quality, its technological prowess; do you buy because you have the dosh, or do you buy frugally?
If you buy, what are your prerequisites?
1. I DO buy based on marque. I will not buy Samsung or LG for many reasons.
2. I also buy because of quality or purported quality - I spend a lot of time reading reviews and comparing notes of people/sites I trust.
3. Technological prowess sometimes has influence on my shopping habits, but often not. I buy what I need, but not because of numbers.
4. I try to be frugal, but often, the lure of a yet unused part of my wallet gets to me.
A horrid cycle!
For a background on iSheep and why it ISN'T a successful campaign; for why users shouldn't be forced to buy another brand because they are considered stupid; for a good read (right?), check out: Why iSheep are better than LemmingS
i really like the term iSheep. Can I have it please? ,)
Personally I used to buy stuff based on numbers after many weeks of research. I spent way too much time building my PC and spent even more money and time on geeky stuff like watercooling my PC and freezing my CPU with peltier elements. Then I overclocked the hell out of my system until the very verge of becomming unstable. Just to get a fraction more points in a benchmark.
By now I just wan't to be able to surf the net, stream videos, play WoW, run Photoshop, After Effects and Maya and I'm happy. And the less hassle I have with it the happier I am.
So while I shunned Apple products in the past because the lack of real horsepower and tweaking potential I now crave the "it simply works" mentallity that's attached to Apple products. Plus they all look so sexy that you really want to have some adult quality time with it.
"some adult quality time"? Well, enjoy, but I see what you mean. I still love my Sony Walkman, my Fuze, and to a lesser extent, my HiSound AMP3, but overall, the iPod touch makes me come back more often. Computers - I cannot run Windows, though it is getting much better. It isn't the learning curve (which can be mastered in a few days), it is the unequal design scheme which has everything backwards: buttons, icons, text - nothing is labelled or in similar spaces - nothing has a niche, it just exists wherever the designer for that particular app plopped it.
I hate moving from app to app and having to relearn interfaces.
I bet I have the same problem when I switched to MacOS. At my work a few years back as a IT Tech I had a iMac to test out mac related stuff, but I thought the OS was too unfamiliar to actually work with. Plus in my PC machine was a TV card ^^
I would consider myself frugal and someone who goes for quality products, but not an isheep. I don't stand in line as soon as a new Apple product comes out, and I don't buy each new product that comes along. I would suggest, that if you're going to go with Apple, try to go with the top of the line product you are looking into (iMac, Macbook Pro, etc.) I made the mistake to buy the cheapest iMac they offered a few years back. Outgrew it too quickly and didn't want to fork out the money for upgrades.
It depends on the amount of money involved. The larger the $ sum, the larger the amount of research. If I don't have enough money for my first choice then I may have to settle for next best. Could not afford a good Mac so I'm a PC for example, but I did then research PCs.
Marques play a bit of a role for me but every company can have problems. I have had bad luck with Sony, and Toyota has something in the news too nowadays even though they are considered a good marque. :)
I don't really buy anything. I buy when it can be extremely useful and save a lot of time. And I don't buy because of looks.
I bought an iPod Touch because of it's useful features.
I bought a Kindle because I read a lot of books every year and was running out of space (seriously). Now, I get pre-ordered books delivered via wireless connection.
I use my phone for calling and that's about it. So why not buy a very simple one?
And I don't care for brand names. I buy high-quality stuff. If Apple has it, that's okay with me. If Microsoft, sure. Google, fine. Whatever company, okay.
Oh, and I do read reviews. Unless, of course, it's a book or a game by Blizzard.
I always do days of intensive research, wring my hands in hopelessness and indecision and lie awake at nights with gut-wrenching angst... but in the end, I do what Steve tells me, and I have very rarely been disappointed. I am iSheep!