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3 Terrific Tech Turkeys

Fails of the first order.

Anne Parsons
3 Terrific Tech Turkeys© 2018 Steve Voght flickr

1. Eyetop Wearable DVD Player

This 2004 invention was clearly the brainchild of some quickfire brainstorming session. Unfortunately it never made it’s way to the wastepaper basket. I would seriously like to shake the hand of the person who managed to convince themselves that the Eyetop Wearable DVD Player was ever going to work.
What the guys did, effectively was stick a portable DVD player to a pair of heavy duty sunglasses, and implant a tiny 320-by-240-pixel LCD embedded in the right eyepiece. So supposedly walk around the streets while squinting at the DVD that was playing in your right eye, with the DVD player and battery pack slung over your shoulder. Hmm. Fail.

 2. The Segway

Whatever relative success the Segway had, I’m glad of it, because it has never failed to give me a laugh. The two-wheel personal transportation vehicle was first launched in 2002, after spending $100 million developing the project. At the time of its launch the head of Segway said it "will be to the car what the car was to the horse and buggy". The problem with the Segway, was that not only did it look truly ridiculous, it failed on two points. It’s price point for one - at between $3000-$7000 it was never going to draw a huge consumer base. The other problem was that regulators had trouble defining what it was. In some countries you required a licence due to its classification as a road vehicle. In others, it was illegal to use on roads. From 2001 to the end of 2007, Segway Inc. only sold 30,000 units.

 3. The Microsoft Kin

Unfortunately for the Kin, it was dead on arrival. Microsoft's slide phone was all hyped to knock the iPhone off its perch, but its lack of features ensured this was never going to happen. Supposedly aimed at social-media crazed teens and 20 somethings, the phone didn’t even have GPS, an app store, a calendar or even a messaging platform. Only two months after its launch, Verizon culled the device, A cheaper version was also launched in 2011, but had the same fate, and was killed off due to poor sales. It hasn’t really looked up since. The Windows Phone 7 was another total fail. Another Microsoft phone with ambitions of usurping the iPhone. One consumer report even hilariously concluded that "our research shows that for many years, poor sales of Windows-based phones stem from a deep and stable lack of consumer interest for the product."


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