Half of the “malfunctioning” products returned to manufacturers aren’t defective – they’re just duff designs, reckons Reuters. Netherlands researcher Elke den Oulden found that some firms’ products are so badly designed, even the firms’ own staff can’t work them.
A wave of versatile electronics gadgets has flooded the market in recent years, ranging from MP3 players and home cinema sets to media centers and wireless audio systems, but consumers still find it hard to install and use them, she found.
The average consumer in the United States will struggle for 20 minutes to get a device working, before giving up, the study found.
Product developers, brought in to witness the struggles of average consumers, were astounded by the havoc they created.
She also gave new products to a group of managers from consumer electronics company Philips, asking them to use them over the weekend. The managers returned frustrated because they could not get the devices to work properly.