May 23, 2007
The Bad Hair Days of Product Naming
“While some people are known to have ‘bad hair’ days I feel like I’m currently going through a ‘bad product naming’ week,” writes the Epiacenter reviewer when faced with the HiPePC Driv-N CarPC and the Zonbu Zonbox.
It gets better, actually: the HiPePC is housed inside a Voom-PC-2 enclosure.
My favorite of all of these is the HiPe PC, because what it instantly brings to mind is “hype” as in “overhyped product.” I presume HiPe actually stands for “high performance,” but it’s woefully unsuccessful at conveying anything positive.
And “Driv-N CarPC” sounds like something made by Fisher Price for small children, quite apart from the fact that the driver had better not be doing any high-performance computing while the car is in motion.
“Zonbu Zonbox” has a certain funky charm, though it seems a bit twee for a technology product name. You’d expect it to be some form of media player, not a "low-cost, eco-friendly computing device” that runs Linux. Though admittedly the assorted flavors of Linux often have pretty funky names of their own; the Zonbox runs something called Gentoo.
Enough companies have “bad product naming days” that there’s an entire blog devoted to bad product names. We don’t like to be quite so negative here at NameWire, but they make some good points in their multi-part series about Web 2.0 names.
And we certainly can’t quarrel with their rationale for producing the blog: “A bad name for a product won’t leave a pleasant taste in your customer’s mouth, so please use consideration when naming your product or service.”
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