Google makes it fun to learn about new products and why I'm leaving Comcast

Google has officially announced it’s releasing a browser that goes by the name of Chrome. How did they announce it’s release? Well there are the normal channels all over the web but in an odd marketing twist they released a < a href=>comic book that tells it all. The tell all blog comes to us from Philipp Lenssen of Google Blogoscoped and the comic book is illustrated by none other than Scott McCloud (which for a comic book geek such as myself is fairly pertinent information). You can find all the details of Chrome from the post I linked above, so that’s not what I want to talk about. In fact the only thing I want to say about it is that I’m excited for it and they finally produced the first Dyson inspired browser. What I want to talk about is the comic book.

I’ve read the comic book and linked to it in the above paragraph so you can read it too. It’s great. It’s fantastic in fact. There are illustrated representations of Google staff talking about various features of the browser and why it was created. The Japanese have been using comic books for years to advertise, educate, and train new employees so over there this would be nothing new. Here in the good ol’ U.S. of A this is something quite noteworthy. I wonder if this is going to be a new fad, if  this type of marketing approach is going to catch on? Zune recently produced a comic book written by Steve Niles(30 Days of Night), each chapter was illustrated by a different artist, and it came along with my monthly subscription to Juxtapoz, so not having to buy it was great and even though the name Zune only appeared on the spine and inside covers of the comic I remembered that they were the ones who sent it my way (thanks Zune). Even Seth Godin is talking about this approach. He attributes it to engagement, I on the other hand attribute it to our attention span being reduced by constant AV over stimulation.

There was a great article on Mashable yesterday rhetorically asking "Is the US becoming a part of the internet backwater?" To which the answer is pretty much a resounding YES and companies like Comcast aren’t helping matters much at all. I fully support Paul Glazowski’s letter and as soon as I move into an area where Comcast isn’t my only option (hopefully later this year) I won’t have any of their overpriced and under delivered services. I think if Comcast truly cared about their users (business and residential both) they would read this article by Mark Dykeman and pull their heads out of their collective asses and see that bandwidth capping is a bad bad bad bad BAD idea. I can’t help but think their competitors see this as a good thing as they are driving business their way, and Qwest’s CEO Ed Mueller is probably sleeping a lot better knowing that Comcast has solved many of his problems for him.

A move this ridiculous, this just plain stupid feels like (Comcast’s CEO) is standing on a box and screaming "We blew our load acquiring more than we can financially handle so we need to screw our customers to recoup the expense". Are they going to reduce the price of their ridiculously expensive internet? No. Are they going to give us more choices on our basic cable packages to help makeup for reducing my Hulu usage? No. I’ve got a better option for them. How about you create a tiered package that goes along with your speeds? People who don’t use the internet for much more than reading email and the news can grab a smaller cap and pay a much smaller fee, then have a mid level (the 250g you are currently proposing) followed by an unlimited (like it is now) with associated monthly fees. This would help them grab customers from competitors by offering lower priced packages that fit many daily users needs and still keep many of your current customers by allowing us to keep our unlimited access, unless you jacked the price up that is, in which case I would still leave you. Customers are picky like that we don’t like suddenly getting less than we are paying for.

  • Kent Smith

    I know you were talking specifically about the comic book and new mediums in the us for marketing, but, (and these aren’t my words, I am quoting an anonymous post) “If anyone besides Google had announced a new browser whose two main selling points was tabs on top and a per tab process, would anyone have cared at all?”

    Shows you how effective that comic book was, I thought it was great.

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