We need to limit choice. Apple has the system down – it is the reason they do so well*. I want to buy a new laptop. I currently use a MacBook but decided it makes sense for me to explore PCs as part of my due diligence. Apple is successful in turning people who understand Macs run the same as PCs from the UX point of view into converts because they make choosing their products easier than other companies.
People may argue that PCs are a better product, but “better” is subjective and not really relevant. The product that will be successful will be the one that makes it easier for their customer to choose them. Remember when VHS and Beta videotapes came out? No? Well, the better product didn’t last with consumers. VHS was easier for people to choose, not the better product. Apple makes it easier to choose their product.
In general we believe more options are better. We want basic ice cream shops to have a minimum of 31 flavors. When we buy Levis we have nine styles with five rises and eight rinses to choose from. I’m a simple girl; I just want a pair of jeans. Making decisions about which item to purchase are actually harder when there are endless options.
I am not against personalizing or tweaking the product – but I need a base starting point. The Dell website offers seven different series of laptops… not seven different laptops, but seven series; each series has 2-4 versions from which to start building my laptop needs. In contract, Apple has two laptop options. And then I can begin to personalize from there – clean and simple.
I am not sure I will purchase another Mac, but my head started spinning when I started comparing PC laptops. If only Apple would let me personalize the price… .
* This is not the only reason Apple does well, but I wanted to limit the options you had about WHY. [insert smiley face w a wink]