Saturday, October 13, 2007

Chinese design falls a little short

I volunteered to help our recruiting team a few weeks ago, and in gratitude, they gave me a "really nice" wallet. Truth be told, it's pretty good quality leather, has the firm name embossed on the front, and is a reasonable size. I had been thinking about using a vertically-oriented wallet since carrying around a substantial amount of cash gets difficult when you put it in a bifold (forget about trifold - you'll end up with a four inch thick lump.)

Anyways, when I actually tried to use it, I realized the design is terrible. Like many Chinese-designed products, it's not quite there.

First off, the pocket for cash is difficult to use. The wallet is designed like a traditional bifold, but twice the height. As a result, the pocket for cash is actually just a big pocket, about 8x6 inches. How do you put money in it? Like a traditional bifold, in which case half the pocket is empty, or as two unseparated vertical pockets, in which case the money slides back and forth? Also, if you notice in the picture, the pocket is actually about 1 centimeter too short for Chinese bills (it's even worse for american bills). Am I supposed to use it with money sticking out the side?

Okay, no worries, there are plenty of slots to carry my multitude of VIP cards, prepaid dry cleaning and massage cards, airline membership cards, etc. But yet again, it's just slightly too small. I managed to squeeze my bank card in, but you'll see in the picture that business cards don't fit.

Also, what's the deal with the strap? Are the designers worried that they've made the pockets too big and the cards will slide out? Or did they try to come up with a way to use all the extra leather that they saved from making the other dimensions 10% too small?

Just another example of Chinese design. It can look good, but it's like no one bothered to try using it before making a few thousand and dumping it on the market. For now, it's going to go up on the shelf next to my Chinese stapler that is 1 inch long and holds 15 staples.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

In this issue, I have to say that Japanese produts are much better in design, for example the Takara
Belmont Co. in Somerset, NJ.before they got into the dental units business in the early 60's, they first bought few American made dental chairs and shipped to Japan, took apart and study them and re-design it came up a more practical modern chair,and I have two for over 32yrs, and still in good shape!! JC