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In today’s smartphone market if I say “powerful high end phone” what do you think?

I bet you thought about either the new iPhone or a Samsung, HTC, or LG Android phone. These phones are indeed powerful, high end, premium, and fast and have all the latest features. What else do they have in common? Huge screen sizes. The iPhone 6 is the smallest of the bunch and still usable in one hand however on the Android side it seems that every flagship phone is over 5 inches now. This makes it very difficult for individuals with petite hands to handle these large phones.

Is there a market for the small Android smartphone? I believe so. Per our in class discussion regarding new product opportunities one of the many ways to enter the market place is by “Understanding the customer.” Companies recognize that people want smaller phones so companies make “mini” versions of their flagship phones, this is only done within the Android camp; however, these mini smartphones are underpowered so they are not a flagship any longer. There are many articles online about how there should be more small smartphones for customers that don’t sacrifice power and premium feel.

There is a new phone that was just released called the Sony Xperia Z3 Compact that I believe meets the needs of many consumers in the US market. The phone is small and does not compromise on power or premium feel. I think Sony did a great job with the phone because it fills a gap in the smartphone market. Looking at this situation using a hypothetical QFD approach Sony identified a need for a small no compromise smartphone. Sony filled that need by developing a phone with great battery life, a small form factor and high end specifications. Sony related customer wants (small form, performance) to its product how’s by pairing the phone with a powerful battery, great camera, small size and other premium specifications. Sony looked at the requirements of the phone and tried to find relationships between the firms “how’s” so that they could build a phone consumers want. Sony could pair its energy saving software with a powerful battery for better battery life or use its display (TVs) expertise to develop a low energy vibrant display for the phone. Sony had to make some compromises in order to keep the cost and size within reason so Sony had to develop some customer importance ratings such as small size, screen pixel density, battery life, camera, etc. and rate them. Sony then could evaluate competing products against the Z3 compact and see how it compares. Finally, to complete its QFD analysis Sony would compare the performance of the product to the desirable technical attributes. This would mean testing for battery life, screen quality, camera quality and performance, bendiness, etc. Once Sony determines its phone meets the specifications it desires it can then release it to the public.

Going through this QFD approach for a new ‘standard challenging’ product helped me understand the process greatly and really appreciate the effort that goes into developing a new product and building a QFD house of quality.

What you do you think about the trend in smartphone sizes?

Are you for or against the increasing size of smartphone screens? Why or why not?



The Pinky and the Brain Couldn’t Do It, But Android Has… Over the World of Technology That Is!

As the title of the referred article suggests, Android really is everywhere… you just don’t realize it. Not only is Google’s Android the number one mobile operating system currently out there, but Android is in just about anything with a computer chip and is becoming the standard for operating systems in smart devices. As more devices with the Android operating system hit the market, Google is continually widening the gap between its competitors, Microsoft and Apple, and is making its home as the dominant software player in the tech device world.

So how does Google’s Android tie into quality?


One of the things that we learned in class is how important quality is to consumers. In the end, your product does not really matter. It all comes down to customer satisfaction and delivering on the fulfillment of their needs. In a sense, this is what Google has done through Android. This open source software can easily be manipulated by virtually anyone to get just about anything to do whatever they want it to. Users are not limited to certain functionalities already pre-decided by the makers of the operating system, but instead allow consumers to keep their freedom of choice and allow them to act upon them. In the end, consumers fulfill their own needs and end up with their own unique, customized product.

This not only allows for Google to keep its current customers from switching to competitors, but Google is also benefiting from expanding its consumer base to include individuals who like to experiment with technology. As more consumers join the Android community and take the operating system into their own hands by modifying its uses and capabilities, Google is getting developers to make their product better and its application vast. And it is all done free.

Android isn’t just popular with consumers, but also with hardware and software companies. As its popularity has increased and its dominance established in the market, Android is becoming a standard for devices. More and more hardware and software companies are becoming “Android experts” to ensure that their products are compatible with the software.

By allowing its software to be easily accessible and modified by anyone, it is no wonder that Google’s Android has risen in popularity so quickly and widespread.  Although many companies, such as Apple and Microsoft, strive to keep their product’s formulas secret in order stay ahead of the competition, Google has proven that doing the exact opposite can be done. Not only that, but that one can benefit from it as well.

Personally, I think that what Google allows to be done with Android should be applicable to other devices. As an Android user who took advantage of making my phone better to suit my preferences, I am a big fan. On the other hand, Apple’s I-phone has left me wondering why I ever made the switch.

What do you think? How will Android affect the future of technology and the way products are being deployed?



Vance, Ashlee. “Behind the ‘Internet of Things’ Is Android—and It’s Everywhere.” Bloomberg Businessweek. 30 May 2013.

Are Super-size Smartphones the New Tablets?

Over the years, the sizes of smartphones are getting bigger and bigger. Designers are beginning to create phones with the idea of the bigger the better. The best sellers for smartphones are the ones with the larger screens. The resolution for the screen is as high as 1080p. Smartphones are becoming the size of tablets. This means small tablets can soon replace smartphones by implementing it with the same functions.

For example, Android smartphones have grown in size over the years, from “4 inches, quickly followed by 4.3 inches and 4.5 inches, and now up to 5 inches and even beyond” (Tofel 2). Android created their products according to their consumers’ desires. The majority of the people wanted larger screens of “4.5 inch display or larger” (Tofel 2), which made using it more enjoyable. Most people use their phones for web browsing rather than to use it for calls. A larger smartphone means users will need to hold it with two hands. The convenience and mobility of using it with two hands is not a problem, because most people use it while they are sitting down. The majority of the consumers want larger screens, which is about 77% of the people. What about the other 23% of the consumers who do not desire the large screens? Android will lose about 23% of their consumers to their competitors with smaller phones available.

The growth of smartphone functions has made it necessary to increase the screen size. The more functions that are put into the phone, the more pixels are needed for the graphics to look visually good. Research has shown that most consumers’ ideal good quality smartphone are the ones that offer the most functions and has the largest screen. It is also viewed as a better value for their money. The dimensions of quality define this as user-based. It is the products with the desired attributes that satisfies the consumers’ needs the most. In this case, smartphone consumers want more functions and a larger screen. The product attributes only meet the needs of majority of the consumers. Android phones are designed to appeal to the majority and neglecting those who do not want a larger screen. The problem with this is that, not all consumers want the same product attributes. The quality is determined by the consumer’s needs and wants them self.  The product attributes need to meet the customer’s expectations for them to be satisfied.

As a consumer myself, if a phone can do more than other phones can for the same price, it would be considered a better deal. The size of the phone does matter to me, as it has to fit in my pocket for convenience. I would prefer to have a smaller phone than a larger phone that requires two hands to hold. My idea of a good quality phone is different from other consumers because it has to fit my needs. The quality of a product is subjective and every consumer’s needs and wants are different.



  • What is your idea of a good quality phone?
  • Is it true that most smartphone consumers want bigger screens?
  • Do you think tablets will soon be replaced by smartphones?



Facebook Home for Mobile Users Innovative? or a Flop?

Facebook wants to takeover your computer, tablet, life, and now your Phone?

The sole objective for Facebook Home is to immediately let you gain access to the social network with just a simple look at your phones screen, and this works without you physically running the app or even unlocking your phone. So in simple words, from your locked screen you’ll be able to see your news feed, posts, and full screen photos posted by friends—not to mention you will also have the ability to comment and like the items you stumble upon.

Facebook Home
Facebook Home “Start Up Screen”

So how exactly is this innovative/different as to other phones with normal software? A Facebook Home equipped phone differentiates itself from other phones as you turn on the screen. You will see the time and a small circle at the bottom of the phone displaying your current profile picture. If you don’t touch the screen, your news feeds, known as Cover Feed (in Facebook Home), will start displaying and automatically scrolling from one post to another. There is also the option of manually swiping through the feed just incase you come across something interesting. On the bright side each post takes up the entire diameter of the screen, giving you the perfect visual. If a photo is posted then it will lighten up the screen and you have the option of double clicking to enter your comment or to add a like. If it’s a text post, the author’s photo will appear transparent in the background. If you swipe your finger to the right, you now engage in Facebook Messenger, where you can directly speak to your friends, while also seeing and receiving your SMS texts.

If your friends are boring and you’re really not an avid Facebook user then I can see this being very pointless and annoying to you. But if your obsessed with Facebook and constantly stalking an ex-boyfriend or girlfriend or cant get enough from just having it on your computer, then Facebook Home might be right down your alley. Then again, the option for Facebook Home is 100% optional when buying a new phone, so Facebook still allows the customer choose whether they want to adapt to Facebook Home or just use the normal app.

iPhone users, you like the idea? Well unfortunately Facebook Home is an optional feature for Android users only. It won’t be running on any Apple products because apple does not allow other companies to take control of the main functions. Though in Apples basic settings you are allowed to sign into you Facebook and Instagram and be able to share content easily. But that’s as far as it goes with Apples strict policies.

Do you think Facebook Home is differentiating the brand in the right way or setting up for a flop in the mobile world? Was it a bad decision to make software that has opted them from the biggest mobile manufacturer, Apple? What are you thoughts?