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Gadget shoppers need help, not hype

Are you actually impressed by those mobile phone or tablet PC ads? Well, I am not. Mostly. N Madhavan writes.

india Updated: Sep 05, 2011 01:44 IST
N Madhavan

Are you actually impressed by those mobile phone or tablet PC ads? Well, I am not. Mostly. The usual advertising approach is to show strong visuals and pack in a huge amount of abracadabra information that leaves you panting for what you are really looking for.

Exhibit II: Review columns of technology magazines/websites. I have a problem with young, cool geeks more keen to show what they know about gadgetry than help you make up your mind.

With 800 million mobile phones and counting, and everything from Rs 1,000 to Rs 40,000 in the budget range, we need more focus in the way mobile phones and tablet PCs are chosen.

So what do we really need? I got an inkling a few days ago, when a young IIT-educated entrepreneur running a lean company walked into my office. Sahil Bajaj runs PhoneCurry.com, a site that helps people zero in on what they need. One look at the site and I felt this is exactly what we need. (Do you know of any other such site? Please write in)

PhoneCurry functions a bit like the advanced feature on search engines. You can choose the things that you are looking for: form, design, operating system, software applications, radio/MP3 players, brand or keyboard, other features and the price to zero in on the shortlist that could take you closer to sane purchases. It is important for such advice sites to be neutral to brands. Bajaj assures me this is so. In fact, you can choose the model here and buy it somewhere else.

For a lark, I asked Sahil to list me the five most interesting phones in India.

He listed the Micromax Van Gogh (Bluetooth car-travel friendly), iBall's Aasaan (emergency siren), Spice Popkorn (projector phone), Intex 2020 Vision (for visually impaired) and Micromax Bling 2 (girlie design)

The purpose of this article is not to discuss details but to show how clarity can help. You buy what you need, not what they confuse you with.