jamesh
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Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 12:01 pm

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fruitoftheloom
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 12:17 pm

Classic 8-)
Retired disgracefully.....

hippy
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 1:14 pm

It's not always true though, and certainly not an absolute, because some people prefer the version which is getting replaced or superseded, especially if the new is accompanied with a price increase or something the customer sees as a negative. That's particularly true of cars and goods where people may not like the new styling, and may be the case with Pi's where it adds something new but also comes with increased power draw or potential heat issues or reallocates I/O signals.

Many people will keep on buying the old version because it does the job and they don't want or need more, couldn't give a fig that the new version is supposedly better in some way, has something they aren't interested in. Some will prefer the old 'devil they know' rather than the new which may alter things, require making changes in what worked, and may introduce new problems to work around.

But, yes, some people will want 'the new shiny' will hold off buying if a new version is about to be released. Where it is a clear 'value for money' issue that will encourage holding-off purchasing, but some will still prefer to spend to have now, rather than wait and have better. It is whether it is a significant number which holds off buying which really matters and there seems little actual evidence to suggest that it will be.

The whole notion that announcing a new product will kill sales seems to be based on a few high profile cases - particularly Osborne - where some have argued it wasn't specifically that they announced a new model which killed Osborne's sales dead, that this is a mistaken and incomplete analysis. What applied in one case does not necessarily apply in another.

The fact is there are businesses who do announce future products and don't suffer the imagined consequences of zero sales. Or they would have put themselves out of business in doing so by now.

It therefore seems it is more a case of managing the issue than fearing it, timing reductions in production to match reaction to new announcements, to mitigate against problems, making announcements in an appropriate way.

If the foundation really does fear announcing new products will kill existing sales dead it might be worth them talking to those who have experience in avoiding that, are skilled in walking that tightrope, and can advise on how to achieve that.

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Gavinmc42
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 1:54 pm

If the foundation really does fear announcing new products will kill existing sales dead
1) Nah, that's not it , they just like messing with our heads and watch us go crazy speculating on the next versions.
Imagine what it does to the "competition" :lol:

2) Software can take ??? time to get working, no product will be released until the software is working on it.
RPF have 3 new boards ready and preproduction but the software guys are still running around with hammers killing bugs.

3) Nah, the lawyers say don't announce anything, we will get sued by companies losing money on changes based on pre-announcements.

4) There was a lesson RPF learned early, "We have this little board we think may sell a few thousands".
"Er, guys we have a slight problem, we sold 100,000 in the first hour before the servers crashed" :oops:
Probably a big sign in Pi towers, "First rule of Pi, don't talk about new Pi's, 2nd rule, don't talk about new Pi's"

All the above except 3 because it was UK not USA.
If it was the USA - Still waiting for the rainbow PCBs, collectors will go crazy.
Then there is the franchising and marketing tie ups, paperwork still waiting to be signed.
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jamesh
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 1:59 pm

hippy wrote:It's not always true though, and certainly not an absolute, because some people prefer the version which is getting replaced or superseded, especially if the new is accompanied with a price increase or something the customer sees as a negative. That's particularly true of cars and goods where people may not like the new styling, and may be the case with Pi's where it adds something new but also comes with increased power draw or potential heat issues or reallocates I/O signals.

Many people will keep on buying the old version because it does the job and they don't want or need more, couldn't give a fig that the new version is supposedly better in some way, has something they aren't interested in. Some will prefer the old 'devil they know' rather than the new which may alter things, require making changes in what worked, and may introduce new problems to work around.

But, yes, some people will want 'the new shiny' will hold off buying if a new version is about to be released. Where it is a clear 'value for money' issue that will encourage holding-off purchasing, but some will still prefer to spend to have now, rather than wait and have better. It is whether it is a significant number which holds off buying which really matters and there seems little actual evidence to suggest that it will be.

The whole notion that announcing a new product will kill sales seems to be based on a few high profile cases - particularly Osborne - where some have argued it wasn't specifically that they announced a new model which killed Osborne's sales dead, that this is a mistaken and incomplete analysis. What applied in one case does not necessarily apply in another.

The fact is there are businesses who do announce future products and don't suffer the imagined consequences of zero sales. Or they would have put themselves out of business in doing so by now.

It therefore seems it is more a case of managing the issue than fearing it, timing reductions in production to match reaction to new announcements, to mitigate against problems, making announcements in an appropriate way.

If the foundation really does fear announcing new products will kill existing sales dead it might be worth them talking to those who have experience in avoiding that, are skilled in walking that tightrope, and can advise on how to achieve that.
Why talk to anyone? We seem to be doing fairly well as we are, sales going well, profits coming in. Why upset the apple cart? Just keep on doing what we are doing. Seems to work for us.

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haertig
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 2:10 pm

For computers, new products are almost always better than the older version. The peripherals - case, fans, power supplies, DVD drives, etc. - not so much, because they are often cost reduced with cheaper build quality. But for a single board computer like a Pi, there's not a whole lot that you can cost reduce out of the thing that would make it worse than previous versions. Of course, as soon as I say that, they'll decide to save money by supplying only one USB port and saving a penny getting rid of the other three connectors!

However, the Pi is so cheap - less than a dinner in a restaurant for two - that I'm not going to hold out on buying the current model while awaiting a newer model, even thought I expect the newer model to be better in every regard (except probably in power use).

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Gavinmc42
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 2:21 pm

even thought I expect the newer model to be better in every regard (except probably in power use).
Less power, er more cpu power less watts, 1.5GHz at 50ma :lol:
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Martin Frezman
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 3:11 pm

I don't think the Pi is there yet - and it'll be a long while until it is - but computers/software do reach that point. And by "that point", I mean where cars are now - where each year's models are objectively worse than before.

You can tell you've reached that point (with computers) when they have to force you to "upgrade". Clearly, Windows 10 is the shining example of this. MS has had to resort to stealth and force to "upgrade" people's machines behind their backs. (And, of course, stop selling the old, reliable versions).

People were quite happy with XP - until MS forcibly removed that (Yes, I know what I'm talking about here) - and they're (more or less) happy with Windows 7 now - until MS pries that from their cold, dead hands (to use an old turn of phrase).
If this post appears in the wrong forums category, my apologies.

hippy
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 3:20 pm

jamesh wrote:Why talk to anyone? We seem to be doing fairly well as we are, sales going well, profits coming in. Why upset the apple cart? Just keep on doing what we are doing. Seems to work for us.
And I am fine with that. I was only really countering that I don't believe that pre-announcements killing sales is an entirely valid reason for not pre-announcing new products which is what seemed to be being suggested.

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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 3:26 pm

haertig wrote:Of course, as soon as I say that, they'll decide to save money by supplying only one USB port and saving a penny getting rid of the other three connectors!
You mean like the "known to be in the works" Pi3A?
However, the Pi is so cheap - less than a dinner in a restaurant for two - that I'm not going to hold out on buying the current model while awaiting a newer model, even thought I expect the newer model to be better in every regard (except probably in power use).
Actually...it wouldn't surprise me if the next version has the same power requirements, or even a bit less than the Pi3B.

Choosing a Pi for a project gets interesting once you're reasonably familiar with what's out there. My current purchase plans (when my budget recovers from recent events) is to accumulate several more Pi2B2 boards. I can use about half a dozen of them for an ongoing use for which they are better than the Pi3B and the modest performance boost over the Pi2B, plus *lack* of WiFi and no thermal issues as compared to the Pi3B give them the edge. Should there ever be a "Pi2Bv1.3" based on a "Pi4B" SoC, I may move to it, but that is probably *at* *least* 3 years away.

I think there is, and will continue to be, a market for versions of the Pi that fit the original "official case" (with the LED lightpipe next to the GPIO block), without WiFi and slightly lower system specs. Be nice if the original cases were still generally available, though.

jahboater
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 4:25 pm

W. H. Heydt wrote: Actually...it wouldn't surprise me if the next version has the same power requirements, or even a bit less than the Pi3B.
Agreed. My guess is we will have to wait a bit and then a 20nm (or less) SoC Pi4 will appear (trouncing the competition probably).

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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 6:47 pm

jahboater wrote:
W. H. Heydt wrote: Actually...it wouldn't surprise me if the next version has the same power requirements, or even a bit less than the Pi3B.
Agreed. My guess is we will have to wait a bit and then a 20nm (or less) SoC Pi4 will appear (trouncing the competition probably).
That would be....interesting. However, I don't expect it. I am expecting a 28nm part. I will concede, though, that if your idea came to pass it would be quite some rabbit out of that particular hat. (There are also any number of things that I think have a higher priority than trying to go to 20nm at this time.)

stderr
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 7:04 pm

jamesh wrote:Dilbert knows!
Because software lacks much or now sometimes even any incremental cost, the obvious solution is to just provide a free downloadable upgrade to the latest version if you buy the obsolete version now. That's usually not going to work with hardware, of course.

stderr
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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 7:09 pm

W. H. Heydt wrote:
jahboater wrote:Agreed. My guess is we will have to wait a bit and then a 20nm (or less) SoC Pi4 will appear (trouncing the competition probably).
That would be....interesting. However, I don't expect it. I am expecting a 28nm part.
There are a million consumer SBC out there now and they are all based on parts originally intended for mobile phones with the exception of the TI Beaglebone stuff, right? So the options out there are whatever is already out there but locked up in a silly cell phone. Is there something 20nm (or less) out there that someone wants to increase their volume with?

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Re: Why don't we announce products in advance?

Fri Apr 28, 2017 11:45 pm

stderr wrote:
W. H. Heydt wrote:
jahboater wrote:Agreed. My guess is we will have to wait a bit and then a 20nm (or less) SoC Pi4 will appear (trouncing the competition probably).
That would be....interesting. However, I don't expect it. I am expecting a 28nm part.
There are a million consumer SBC out there now and they are all based on parts originally intended for mobile phones with the exception of the TI Beaglebone stuff, right? So the options out there are whatever is already out there but locked up in a silly cell phone. Is there something 20nm (or less) out there that someone wants to increase their volume with?
While what you say is true, there are other considerations as well. Chief among them--I think--is backwards compatibility, which in this case, implies that future SoCs need to be compatible with the VC4. Broadcom would able to do that...but I doubt anyone else can.

Going to a smaller process node is not, intrinsically, a goal in itself. The results of smaller nodes is, chiefly reduced voltage (and, therefore TDP).

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