features don't matter

This outstanding essay by Andreas Pfeiffer points out that product features don't matter. It's the overall user experience that's important. iPod being the perfect example - "as the iPod abundantly shows, user experience (along with a strong brand, and clever marketing) is much more important for the success of a device then technical specifications."

He also highlights ten fundamental rules for the age of user experience technology. My favorite rule:

10) Less is difficult, that's why less is more
Let's face it: it's usually harder to do simple things exceedingly well, than to just pile up features. The 80/20 rule applies here too: do well what 80 percent of your users do all the time, and you create a good user experience.

Excellent read. Related (kind of), watch this interview with Alex Bogusky - who explains that the brand is more important than ever. Every product is great. No product is really better than another. It's the brand that differentiates. Brands are people. Cool.

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