China — country of mystery, of intrigue, of wholesale intellectual property theft. Her majestic mountains and sprawling cities inspire us. Her cheap electronics make us puke a little in our mouths.
Feast your eyes, friends, on the latest product from her shores: this 2GB, $69 MP3/MP4 player sold by Geeks.com. It is utter and total garbage.
The box: What is that, velvet?
Those of you who know me and have read me for a few years know that I am a man of some calm and restraint. I rail against only a few major players in this industry and try to give just about any product a fair shake in my reviews. When Doug posted about this MP4 player last week, I thought it would be fun to see how it worked. I see now that my decision was fatally flawed.
Coming soon to the PS3: Explode Pigboat
The player itself is made of flimsy plastic. The touchscreen is very dim and violently non-responsive. It does not appear in disk mode under OS X and I had considerable trouble connecting it to a PC. The product, in short, is infantile — a half-assed effort by an electronics manufacturer to bilk the entire technology-loving community out of seventy dollars.
I like to think of good products the way I think of bands. When they’re on, they’re great. When work between R&D and marketing, engineering and design, sales and support all work together, they can make beautiful music. This product, however, is like flatulence played over a reel-to-reel tape recorder made by blind Russian factory workers during the harsh winter of 1973 — nothing, not even the sound emanating from the paper cone speakers, is right.
I’m sure the folks at Geeks.com mean us no harm. We know what we are getting into and we accept the good with the bad. But for anyone to spend any money on this — nay, for even the good men and women at Geeks.com to allow this to enter through their loading dock door — is a travesty and a crime against all that is holy in this or any other world.
Sure, it does everything as advertised. But the theft of the iPhone UI — for no good reason — coupled with the shoddy manufacturing, the various failed attempts and “value-added” applications, and a general unsuitability to any task makes me want to puke. Call me a stickler for shit actually working, but I couldn’t even set the date, let alone play the built-in game, Explode Pigboat.
If there is a place in hell for malicious businessmen, the designers of this abortion deserve to be there. They’ll be forced to wear Oakley Thumps and only listen to Yanni albums while they drink Crystal Pepsi and eat Hot Pockets for all eternity, cursing their mothers for bringing them into this world to cause such pain and anguish.
I would not introduce this product into the anus of a dead jackal and then blow it up underwater. It would be a waste of dead jackal, explosives, and water.