Personalized Tech: Great When It Works

There is nothing better than trying out new technology and having it transform the way you were consuming a service.  For example, I stumbled across this list of Netflix codes and it enabled searching shows by way of numerous unique categories. You just plug the numbers into your browser at the end of a URL, while being logged into your account, at: and off you go to highly specific selections.

During many evenings at home – considering that we’re all cinephiles there – we tend to have some idiosyncratic viewing ideas. So, when desiring to browse certain film or TV selections in a unique category, it was always rather challenging to call them up on Netflix.  Then I stumbled upon the article with the aforementioned hint on how to find choices by the hundreds of genre categories Netflix provides.

It’s important to note that they don’t feature these categories as part of their standard interface selections.  In my case, what they choose for those categories frequently leaves me flat when browsing around.  But then came the hint, then the lists, and now finding a show to watch is a snap. This is a good example of how personalizing technology can work great.

On the other side of the technology coin, I found a tragically inept execution by Sprint Wireless on their phone app.  You can look up your past bills on it and if you want to send an invoice copy to someone on your plan, they offer a “View/Save PDF Bill” button for each.  The catch: it simply does not work. The button choices don’t actually let you Save, which would have enabled sending one.

On my previous cell carrier’s app, I could easily send invoices and they made sure that the functions they promised would deliver.  Sprint, on the other hand, teases one with personalized functionality they fail to deliver…the other end of the spectrum from Netflix’s nearly flawless execution.

In the end, one can still find joyful surprises in the form of cool tech.  But when providers build them up and then let you down, we are reminded that for some corporations it’s oftentimes still just window dressing.

I’d like to hear your thoughts on satisfying (or not-so-satisfying) personalized technology experiences, send me a note.

Mark Salow, Marketing Consultant