10 tech disappointments, with cool names

1. Microspoft Zune
Microsoft’s Zune, before its name was made public, was known among gadget geeks as simply the “iPod killer.” And you’ve got to admit, Redmond didn’t do that bad a job of actually naming the device once it got around to it–“Zune” is kind of funky in a post-Star Trek way, right? Unfortunately, as many speculated, the music player was a sales disappointment despite decent reviews…read more

2. Segway

It was supposed to change the world, revolutionize transportation and even reinvent urban planning as we know it. It is, of course, the Segway, but once it was known by the sexier code name of “Ginger.”..read more

3. Motorola Rokr

Before there was the iPhone, there was the iTunes-enabled Rokr cell phone from Motorola–but Apple would probably rather that you, in the words of Tony Soprano, fuhgeddaboutit. Unveiled alongside the original iPod Nano in September 2005, the Rokr was a partnership between Apple and Motorola to create a cell phone that could play songs purchased from the iTunes Store…read more

4. LG Chocolate.

On the subject of disappointing cell phones with tasty names, here’s the original LG Chocolate. The trendy, music-player-like phone was synched with Verizon’s much-hyped V Cast mobile media service and was equipped with GPS features and a decent camera considered a rival to Motorola’s hip phones as well as others from carriers like Helio…read more

5. Nokia N-Gage
Remember the “taco phone”? Yeah, that was the Nokia N-Gage. It had a clever name, for sure. The awkwardly designed handheld gaming console was launched in 2003 as a rival to Nintendo’s then-top-notch Game Boy Advance…read more

6. Sega Dreamcast
Video game company Sega has had a few disappointing pieces of hardware that had pretty names like the Dreamcast. When the original PlayStation and Nintendo 64 were the dominant forces in the market, the Dreamcast hit U.S. shores in 1999 and experienced strong initial sales as it was released well ahead of similar consoles like the PlayStation 2 and Xbox…read more

7. Audrey
Back in 2000, electronics manufacturer 3Com released a device that was supposed to make the Internet a whole lot friendlier: Audrey. The PC-less Web-browsing appliance, which had an 8-inch screen, came in shades like “linen,” “meadow,” “ocean,” “slate,” and “sunshine.” It offered television-like “channels” with news and weather…read more

8. Microsoft Origami

“Origami” is a pretty word. And Microsoft probably had a pretty idea when it came up with the concept for its Origami software for ultramobile PCs. The software’s interface splits a QWERTY keyboard into two arcs on either side of the touch screen. Innovative, sure…read more

9. Apple Newton

No list of disappointing gadgets would be complete without the Apple Newton MessagePad, the personal digital assistant that Apple manufactured in the 1990s. One of Apple’s most notorious flops, the Newton was undoubtedly ahead of its time, but it just didn’t sell…read more

10. Truemors.com

Gadgets aren’t the only tech products susceptible to being disappointments in spite of cool names. Take Truemors, the “social information” (i.e., gossip) site founded by former Apple evangelist Guy Kawasaki: that’s one heck of a clever name, and Kawasaki built up significant buzz thanks to the star power of his own moniker…read more

The Nintendo Wii isn’t disappointing…find out why it was mentioned

4 thoughts on “10 tech disappointments, with cool names

  1. That’s a pretty awesome article. Everyone of these products had such promise and potential. Some of these just dropped off the map. I nearly forgot about the Origami but I remember a few years ago I was so excited about it, haha. Hooray for the Wii being opposite though ^-^

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