Blurred Vision: What went wrong with Logitech

20 thoughts on “Blurred Vision: What went wrong with Logitech”

  1. The “valley” doesn’t say any of those things. Those perceptions are held by the VCs who live there, and who are wrong at least 70% of the time (at least the better ones are). Virtually all mass market hardware is commoditized now, and the profitable ones are those who are able to define and design some differentiation into their products. That distinction, however, is beyond the filtering capabilities of most VCs, so they just make these blanket statements that don’t get challenged because they invest in the occasional Google.

    1. KenG

      Those are widely held perceptions that go beyond the VCs. I think historically it has been a difficult market for Valley companies to crack mostly because the valley skill set traditionally has been different but that is changing right now.

  2. Um, GigaOM, you a pretty serious bug with the comment logins. I’m not John Kneeland, I’m @viljoviitanen on Twitter. We probably logged in the same time and I got John’s credentials here. The previous comment about the Boxee box was mine, not John’s.

  3. All of those might have been some of the issues, but they are not the biggest ones – not even close. The biggest issue by far was that it was priced at $300 – a 50% price increase compared to Boxee Box and like 300% increase compared to Roku. Was their hardware that much better than the competitors I doubt it.

    “* The Valley says you especially can’t make money in low-end consumer hardware, but that’s where Logitech thrives.”

    $300 pricing certainly wasn’t low-end for a set top box. That should’ve been their first clue, if that’s really their strategy in general.

    1. You are 100% correct it was too expensive, though I’m not sure it was totally Logitech’s fault. The question is why was it priced at $300? Logitech didn’t arbitrarily choose $300 because they wanted to gouge the customer. They did it to cover their hardware costs (driven entirely by Google requirements) plus R&D and marketing. For Logitech’s Google TV implementation two mistakes were made. Google made the biggest blunder by mandating expensive hardware. Logitech’s mistake was signing up to develop a market for Google knowing the hardware was overpriced.

      But that’s water under the bridge. The issue going forward as others have noted, Logitech needs to shift their focus to mobile accessories while maintaining and improving their PC product lines. Its going to be a crowded field but if they can use their past history of product ingenuity, differentiation and quality to set themselves apart, they will be fine.

  4. Following on Lucian’s comment, Logitech also bought Ultimate Ears and tried to market $400+ earbuds. And an Internet video communication company because they thought people bought Logitech webcams for something other than Skype.

    The company doesn’t seem to have a clear strategy for mobile (their big sellers are built into laptops, and they showed up late for tablets and phones).

    Finally, even in the desktop category their keyboards and mice seem to be stalled, and quality has been more erratic recently.

    Good luck to them – hope they move a bit more quickly.

  5. How bout this for simplicity’s sake: don’t partner with a company that has done nothing to secure the content whose absence will faceplant your device?

    Seems pretty simple to me.

  6. I think Logitech Transformation completed last Qtr& cleaned house for next Era,Why Growth company:

    in PC, Logitech testing Google Chromebooks with it’s Employees, so expect more for Business Cloud Chromebooks

    Also New CEO they are developing Apple Macintosh dedicated line-up

    Also said most of Tablets accessories are yet to be announced and will cover more categories
    —————————————
    Unified Communication,it is the Story of Huge dimension, Ubiquitous.

    Skype, Microsoft Lync, Tablets, Smartphones, PC, Mac, LifeSize Cloud Connection Service, End Points for SMB & Enterprise, Infrastructure, Logitech accessories for Think Clients & Cloud Computing.

    Skye-Facebook deal & Google+ will take Logitech and Lifesize to another level
    Music, Smart TV, Security Systems, Digital Home
    ——————————————
    Digital Home Potential could be bigger than PC as we will by Xmas our Home will be a Smart Home with Smart TV, Wireless Music, Smart Security, Smart Lightning, Smart Logitech accessories & New Breed of Harmony Remote as CEO said during CC

    “We plan to participate in a variety of ways using Harmony as the centerpiece of our strategy and focusing on smart TV, audio and video products and solutions. ”
    ——————————————-
    Major Markets will be US, Europe, China, other Emerging Markets (India, Latin America, Russia)

  7. Also now Logitech Revue is top seller at Amazon Add TV cam and Video chat, Twitte and Watch TV, with major Update next month with Android store, gaming,full chrome Browser with more Logitech accessories this will be a hit, add it to Logitech Digital Home strategy in 2011, things will be big

  8. GoogleTV needs another revision or two before it is fully baked. A lot of the things it needs to be successful like an app store and support for game controllers are not even in the OS yet. GoogleTV is like the first version of Android — not very good. It has a bright future though I think. Revision 2 or Revision 3 will be successful.

  9. I just paid $22.87 for an iPad2-64GB and my girlfriend loves her Panasonic Lumix GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS. I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $675 which only cost me $62.81 to buy. Here is the website we use to get it all from, BidsOut.cÓm

  10. At the same moment when Logitech Revue was ready to market, also Sony introduced their Blu Ray player. Both with Intel CE processor and both with Google TV. I don’t know what the unit sales was of this Sony device and how many returns they had, but the performance and acceptance of both devices was not good. Maybe there were politics involved on management level or by the VCs indeed combined with too much pressure for the Christmas sales and they all took the risk to go live. After a lot of negative news, Google asked their new partners even not to introduce their Google TV solution on CES. I agree that Logitech is always doing a great job in what they do best and that’s commodity products, where they are always fully in charge of the complete process. Logitech introduced their HD camera at the same time for Video calling via the Revue, which is more their type of business. If they introduced this as a separate product compatible with other devices, then they were doing their core business again and probably successful. I guess some key players convinced them to do it and updates were promised quickly to solve problems, but eventually never came, or too late of still with problems.. Why would Sony with all their knowledge and experience agree in going live with the player and Google TV? I don’t believe that the technical team was standing 100% behind the product. Logitech always makes clear decisions, but I don’t know if they made the decisions themselves..
    Looking at Boxee box, they already had a big community and they released the sources codes for hacking, which is great for the community. Releasing all sources codes is automatically a problem when you want to connect to VoD content/Hulu services/Netflix etc. because movies companies don’t accept this in terms of security and Boxee closed the backdoors again and made the community angry again.. You can’t have it all, you have the find a way in the middle which is difficult.
    From my point of view, Google TV was a separate experience on a box and not an integrated experience for the user. Boxee box came more closer, but is running performance-wise mostly on software creating CPU overload, buffering issues etc. The key success on functionality should be when hardware, software and middleware are optimized and fully integrated with each other. If Google TV, Sony/Logitech/D-link and Intel created a product together at the same time and using each others strong points during the process, I think we had a completely different product, so let’s see what the future brings us.

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