Gadget reviews that never were (and will never be)


When I decided today that I wouldn't be reviewing the BenQ S6 I used for MID Moves and still have on short-term loan from Intel, I started thinking about some of the gadgets I own that have met the same fate. I always buy everything with full-review intentions but sometimes, for one reason or another, I just change my mind and decide not to do it. And once I've mentally labeled a device as one that I won't review, that's that. I won't review it.

Since the BenQ S6 has the honor of being my tenth non-review, though, I thought I'd take a moment to share the members of the shunned class of gadgets it now belongs to and explain a bit about why each unit is there.

BenQ S6. The thought of having to write this review has been weighing me down for a while. Though I was glad to be assigned this device for MID Moves, it was never on my personal lists of gadgets I wanted to try because slates are my least favorite MID/UMPC design and the user interface, though award-winning, didn't appeal to me.

Using the device during and after MID Moves was a fine experience, but the thought of having to write about it made me a little sick. It gave me that sense of dread that I used to get on Sunday nights when I was in school or when I had a normal 9-to-5 job. It's just that sinking "I don't want to!" feeling that doesn't always make sense or have a cause. To be honest, even writing these two little paragraphs right now is starting to stress me out. I'm moving on.

Archos 5. The Archos doesn't really belong on this list since I've actually already written more than a handful of features and accessory reviews about it, but I'm including it because my original plans to put together dedicated reviews on the web browsing experience, multimedia capabilities, and so on aren't going to come to fruition. I don't know why either because I'm actually very happy with the device. I use it often and even bring it with me when I wait in the car for my husband to run into the store to pick something up! I just don't really want to write about it anymore.

Samsung S3. I unboxed this player shortly before Christmas because of the color and haven't used it since. I only bought it because it was on sale at Amazon when I was in a shopping mood.

Microsoft Zune 4
. I bought the Zune 4 long after it was released out of curiosity and for personal use. The "review window" was pretty much sealed shut by the time I got it, so writing my own review was never really a priority for me. Sometimes it's also nice just to buy something that I can enjoy quietly without scrutiny.

Archos 405. This is another one that I unboxed around a holiday and never really looked at again. I don't have anything to say about it because I only turned it on once and never got around to using it. I also bought it long after there was any consumer interest in it. And it's difficult to work on something like a review knowing full well that no one will care once it's done.

SanDisk Sansa View. Yet another publicly unboxed gadget that fell by the wayside. Based on my comment about why I wouldn't be reviewing it, I guess it belongs with the BenQ. Here's what I said about it a month after the unboxing: "I can't seem to gather the strength or interest to review the View anymore, so I'm just going to add it to my DAP collection with no fanfare. Something about the UI just makes me not want to use it (or take the time to do a full review with a bunch of pictures). I don't think it's a bad product (although I still haven't used it enough to know for sure), but just looking at it bores me for some reason. I think I just waited too long. I've been dreading the review for weeks and decided today not to force myself to write it."

SanDisk Sansa Fuze. The Fuze is currently my primary DAP (you'll usually see it when I pack up for a trip). It's not often that I'm in the market for anything in particular, but I was actively looking for what was then considered a high-capacity flash DAP with excellent sound quality when I bought it. This was months after the player came out, so timeliness was the main reason I didn't write the review. Well, that and the fact that Sansa players have outdated UIs I can't really stand to look at.

SanDisk Sansa Clip. The Clip was one of those no-brainer purchases I made because of the outstanding reviews (sound quality is truly stellar) and low price. I also needed something with universally recognized top-notch sound quality for better DAP comparisons.

Creative Zen Stone Plus. I don't remember why I bought this. I think I had a Fry's gift card that I had to use when I was out of town or something (we don't have a Fry's here in Hawaii). I was going to review it at some point but ended up getting bitten by the "who cares?" bug before I got around to it.

Cowon S9. I'm chalking this one up to bad timing. I unboxed it after Christmas and took it with me to CES 2009 so I could test it out. But with all the work involved during CES, getting sick, traveling again for MID Moves, and getting sick again, the S9 ended up getting lost in the shuffle. I just got over being sick a few days ago and then my Sony Vaio P arrived and took over my life. I suppose there's still time for me to review the Cowon, as it's only been out since Christmas and consumer interest is still there, but frankly, at this point I feel better sweeping it into the pile of unreviewed gadgets and moving on.

And those are the devices starring in the reviews that you'll never see here.

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Jenn K. Lee

Jenn K. Lee is the founder of Pocketables. She loves gadgets the way most women love shoes and purses. The pieces in her tech wardrobe that go with everything are currently the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Sony Tablet P, and Nexus 7, but there are still a couple of vintage UMPCs/MIDs in the back of her closet.

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