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Posit: The best thing B&O can do to improve its brand is to improve its support

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Barry Santini
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Barry Santini Posted: Wed, Sep 30 2020 11:24 AM
I do not know what the costs are with hiring or keeping software engineers on staff to solve or improve software issues with any B&O product.

But I can think of no other single aspect that would support and bolster the (higher) retail prices asked by B&O, as well as improve the value and pricing of their products on the secondary market.

Discussion.
Curly
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Curly replied on Wed, Sep 30 2020 3:25 PM

I have a feeling many existing owners feel the software could be less buggy, indeed. Improvements here would make us all happier. Although I’m not sure such improvements would bring new customers to buy products. It’s not as though great numbers of prospective clients who would otherwise make a purchase do not do so because they’ve heard the software isn’t the company’s strong suit. I bet few people say “I’m ready to buy these $10,000 speakers but wait, nevermind because the software is buggy.”

I think software improvements would benefit existing owners mostly. (As an owner, I welcome them.)

Currently: BeoSound Core, BeoLab 17, BeoLab 18

Previously: BeoSound 1 non-GVA

Stan
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Stan replied on Wed, Sep 30 2020 4:47 PM

Unfortunately, there's a prevailing idea in the software community that high quality doesn't sell.  The thought process is something like this:  as long as it isn't too hard to setup and get working, demos well, and doesn't crash "too much", people will always choose new and cool (often 1/2 baked) features over "it doesn't crash as much", or it better handles "edge cases". 

I blame Microsoft during their Windows 3.x days for this as they consistently foisted beta software on their customers, and their customers ate it up.  Then almost every other software company competing with them said "hey, Microsoft has shown that customers will tolerate being beta testers, we can do that too.  Stop testing and start shipping!"... and it's gone downhill from there... especially now that everything is connected to the internet, and new software can be easily downloaded to devices (we'll just fix it later).

For a while, Apple seemed to be changing this tide back to the "quality experience" sells over and above "new features", but they have done their share of clunker releases too so I don't see this as a growing trend.  I've argued with my software company's upper management over the years about this, but can't really dispute the numbers.  People really do buy features over quality.  However, they may not stay with a vendor that provides buggy software, but this is why you need to "lock them in" to your ecosystem.  Makes it too costly to switch so you live with the occasional bugs.  To be fair to my company, we are viewed within our industry as being better than most (and you've probably never heard of us because it's a fairly niche business).

People need to start buying quality over features for this to change, and it seems to be human nature to want the newest, coolest, but maybe a little buggy over long term stability and well designed features so I'm not optimistic.  I have resigned to fact that less than optimal software is now a way of life.  Sad but true...  The best you can do is buy "old technology" where the bugs have been worked out, or avoid software to begin with (don't buy the electronically controlled washer and dryer).

bwest1000
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bwest1000 replied on Wed, Sep 30 2020 11:41 PM

There are other companies that make audiophile and lifestyle brand products that seem to get by with much less buggy software. However, I dont think they make the range of products B&O make.  So maybe that's the problem?  B&O is trying to be too many things for too many people?  Are their profits coming from all of their range equally, or do they make more from one division of their product range?

Curly
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Curly replied on Thu, Oct 1 2020 4:45 AM

I have to imagine their margins vary from product to product but I have no clue how to guess what makes them more money than something else.

Currently: BeoSound Core, BeoLab 17, BeoLab 18

Previously: BeoSound 1 non-GVA

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