April 30, 2015

Core77: Chris Murray on 'The End of Product Failure'

How do we decide what to design today, and does that process need a redesign?

The odds a new product will still be around in two years time are not good. Experts estimate that between 25% and 95% of new products never reach their sales and performance goals.

New products have a bad track record because they’re usually solving the wrong problem. Successful product innovation hinges on uncovering an unmet consumer or social need, then meeting it. Sounds simple, but in practice there’s nothing harder than grasping the true needs of others, or knowing with any kind of certainty whether your new approach is better than the old one.

In “The End of Product Failure: Three Technologies That Will Take the Risk Out of Product Innovation,” first published on, Bresslergroup’s Director of Industrial Design, Chris Murray, proposes a solution to this unmet need. He reframes the usefulness of three familiar technologies — the Internet of Things, facial expression recognition software, and 3D printing — that, properly applied, could spell the end of failed consumer products. “We are just beginning to see how technology might disrupt product innovation,” Murray writes.