Gadget Grill Turkey Awards 2010

During the year we get to look at lots and lots of different gadgets, technologies, and concepts.

Mostly they’re good, in that they do exactly what they’re supposed to be doing, with not too many drawbacks.

Occasionally, they’re better than good: they might exceed our expectations, or perhaps open up new paradigms. Occasionally, they might even blow us away.

And sometimes …. well, sadly, they fail. In some, or in many, ways. Poor design, or an ill-thought concept. or maybe it just doesn’t work. Perhaps the pricing regime is just so totally wrong.

Windows ME or Vista could be regarded as turkeys of yore.

And so today, with the American holiday of Thanksgiving giving rise to the consumption of so many turkeys, we at your favourite Gadget Grill, feel that we should make mention of a few of this year’s turkeys.

In no particular order …

Consider the Nokia N8. Nokia keep telling us how good a camera it has. Fine; I have a gaggle of great cameras for when I want to take photos; having a camera in my phone is merely a convenience issue. Hey, Nokia: it’s a P-H-O-N-E. If you can pardon the pun, focus, guys!

Samsung, for their pricing policy on the Galaxy Tab. For about Au$1000 you can buy an iPad rival that’s smaller and has less apps. Yes, you could use it as a phone, but that’s a bloody big handset! Yes, it has a camera, and that is great functionality, but no, the Tab is not good value at $1000. It’s truly a great device, but it really needs to undercut the market leader – the iPad – in price, in order to make its mark on the market. $600-$700, please.

Brother’s range of multi-function printers come in for a Gadget Grill Turkey Award: they have truly turkey eligible firmware in these devices. Let’s look at this logically: these devices perform a wonderful range of tasks: they print, fax, photocopy, and scan, and they are also a phone and answering machine. But think about this: the printer section runs out of ink, one colour … any colour …. doesn’t matter what it is. Now, somebody rings you up and leaves a message on the answering machine. So, in order to retrieve that message on the answering machine, you need to replace the empty ink cartridge!

I’m sorry, but that is just plain stupid. The need to replace the ink cartridge has absolutely nothing to do with the answering machine functionality, and whoever the idiot is that designed that sort of idiotic functionality deserves to be taken out with the turkeys and …. fired!

The Sony Move comes in as a turkey for being too little, too late, and being a me-too device while not being too good at it anyway.