back to article Fujitsu assigns team of women to design PC for women

Fujitsu Japan has announced a range of PCs “planned and developed primarily under the direction of female employees” and “aimed at female users”. The 'Floral Kiss' range of computers is an extension of the LifeBook line and will go on sale in Japan next Friday. Fujitsu says the Floral Kiss was created because women make nearly …

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DJV
Facepalm

Re: CEO Computer

This is good enough for a CEO's use.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: CEO Computer

Shocking, but actually quite admirable in a way. He did at least write on paper occasionally and use a phone, one would hope?

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Big Brother

Petticoat 5

Obligatory link to the petticoat 5, the first computer by and for women:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/comedy/lookaroundyou/programmes/computers/gallery1.shtml

Can't find a youtube link.... perhaps the vid was taken down due to a highly ironic accusation of sexism?

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Silver badge

Re: Petticoat 5 - Got it!

BBC TV: Look Around You - Series 2 - Episode 5 - 'Computers'. Yes, it's funny as was the entire series.

"At the moment, there's only one program available for it, and that's a lipstick colour chart."

I have all the episodes on my media library. Well worth obtaining.

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Anonymous Coward

Choices...

"Three colours – Elegant White, Feminine Pink and Luxury Brown – are offered"

...so, the age-old dilemma remains - pink or brown?

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Silver badge

Re: Choices...

For the discerning user, you could buy both and use them in rotation.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Choices...

Buy, this isn't the middle ages, laddie! :P

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Go

The "Pink Market"

Bought a pink laptop for my daughter when she was at school - they have survived surprisngly well. Does my daughter still choose pink? Only to upset the lads.

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Anonymous Coward

It is silly, yet not.

As already mentioned, there's extra doubleplus masculine branded versions of such things too, and they are usually limited to an extra wallpaper, theme, and preinstalled app in addition to the unusual paint on the outside. You basically just pay more for a slightly more exclusive casing. It's not mainstream yet cheaper than having the case paintbrushed individually.

The marketese doesn't fool around either: It entirely emphasises just how wonderfully "elegant" and "sophisticated" this change of colour is. And the trim, oh the trim, it's golden. It reminded me of adverts for curtains and clothing and such. And let's not forget that matching the handbag is very, very important to some, usually females but by no means never for males, though there it's more usually matching a car brand, likely one they'll never afford. Or their fav soccer team's colours. So there's a definite niche market for this kind of thing.

And there's not even anything wrong with it, except that the "it's for women" is overbroad --plenty women aren't that obsessed with a matched-set wardrobe down to mobiles and the much more expensive laptop--, but that too isn't unusual. It would be more accurate to say it's for the fasion concious, in the same way that a tacky gem-encrusted nokia is aimed squarely at the gilded pikey set.

Oh, nokia had phones with replaceable fronts, and that sparked a whole market of all sorts of replacement fronts. iphones and other smartphones get stuck in aftermarket sleeves with silly designs (I actually liked the microcassette one). And yeah, there are men who like their mobile matched to their jacket, too. But a whole laptop with a fixed colour? That's a smaller market.

Anybody likely reading here --male or female-- knows that it's all about the innards and the colour of the box is nearly entirely irrelevant. So desktop boxes have for the longest time had an ugly sand colour, or usually they're black these days. Laptops aren't much better. Recall what a splash apple made when they suddenly sold computers with bright colours? And, people, that did work pretty well for them, for a while.

We can (and should, as commentards) make light of it, but that doesn't mean there isn't a niche for this kind of thing. The major problem though is that if you get the marketing wrong, you start out with shutting out half the buyers by emphasising it's not for them, and then you risk chasing the rest away because it marks them as susceptible to obviously shallow marketeering. Then again, "not for girls" does get tried too.

As for smaller keyboards and mice, well, there's various sized mice on the market these days, in fact apart from extra "gamer" features, that's the only thing of note that varies. A simple three button mouse without scrollwheel is not even available (so mine's still of the ball variety). And asian market laptops are available in sizes that're smaller than you can get in europe or north america. Swap that all-japanese BIOS for something people elsewhere can read and you may well have a winner already. In fact, the netbook and ultrabook may have both under- and overshot a viable market, actually. Pick a price point between the two, there you go.

Probably shouldn't even try and just paint the thing purple, much less pink. Instead ask well-known fashion designers what colours and designs are closest to "universal" to accessorise with. For it's not really an accessory, can't just swap it out with all that personal info on it and everything. I think that's really the only major problem with the marketing of this thing.

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Silver badge

Re: It is silly, yet not.

That's a very good point- there are plenty of laptops out there with what might be called 'overly masculine' styling... being it some Alienware machine, an Asus with Ferrari branding or a ruggedised laptop (though the latter is at least functional, and female geologists / soldiers etc will appreciate just as much as the boys).

It isn't hard to find a PC gaming case that no person with taste (including many many women) would consider for a moment. But then, it depends on whether the individual is installing it in their front room or in their den.

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Offer colour choices, that's fine

But this does sound a bit sexist. I'm a bloke and I don't need my tech to have Porsche or Ferrari stickers on it.

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Silver badge

Re: Offer colour choices, that's fine

It is sexist but I think not in the sense everybody understands.

This bling-ware is actually aimed at men who would then force their women to carry that stuff around as a symbol of the men's prowess in the computing(?) department.

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Trollface

Re: Offer colour choices, that's fine

That doesn't mean there aren't laptops on the market with them:

http://reviews.cnet.co.uk/laptops/acer-ferrari-one-review-49303769/

Ultimately there is a market for these in both genders, so the fact that they exist is hardly insulting.

Of course when either gender wants to buy something purely based on form over function they tend to get iProducts anyway... </troll>

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Coat

All of its drivers crash constantly...

But you should see it multitask!

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Thumb Down

Sexual Discrimination

Is it just me, or this sexual discrimination?

If I - as a guy - applied for a position on the team, would I be rejected because I wasn't female?

Could you imagine the outrage if it was the other way round?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Sexual Discrimination

I don't know... if a team had a brief to make a gaming laptop that appealed to 16-30 year old males, maybe a woman who wanted to join it might be asked what she could contribute. If she could offer some valuable insights or expertise, one would hope she would be allowed to join.

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Nev
Bronze badge
FAIL

How come Range Rover...

...Managed to involve a woman in the styling process for the Evoque, and come up with something quite good, whilst this is all Fujitsu could achieve?

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Silver badge

Re: How come Range Rover...

Evoque? good? It's a transit van for tarts, a Wag Wagon.

Shudder

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pfft... Where's the glitter? Engineering fail.

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Alert

Didn't Volvo try this on a few years ago?

And Fiat? If I recall, every "designed by females, for females" publicity stunt invariably comes off as a patronising, money grabbing demonstration of just how out-of-touch the company in question is.

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Gold badge

I just thought they could take any old machine, and stick hello kitty stickers and glitter all over it. *shrug*

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Silver badge

Although the name is fairly horrible (perhaps due to translation?), the product itself isn't nearly is ghastly as I expected. Perhaps they really did consult some actual women instead of just assuming they want everything electric pick.

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