19 January 2009

Can't... Open... This... !

Shopping is a regular activity for most of us; you go to a store, shop, market, or wherever, hand over your hard-earned cash, and get something in return. Simple. Now assuming you pay for something and all, it becomes immediately yours, correct? Thus, you should be able to enjoy the benefits of whatever you purchased straight after buying it;


1- You buy a jacket, you can wear it straight away.

2- You buy a mobile phone, you put your SIM card in and use it straight away (assuming it's charged. If it isn't you plug in the accompanying charger and use it straight away).

3- You buy a banana, and you can eat it straight away.

4- etc.

However, there are some electronics and gadget retailers who obviously think that shouldn't be the case. Why should the consumer have it easy, right? Why shouldn't they pay for their product, then actually put in a bit of effort to have to use it? Wouldn't they appreciate the product more after working to get to it?

Case in point; there are a number of products out there being sold in almost impossible-to-open-packs. I'm sure you've come across them sometime or the other:

Yes; these ridiculous, hard plastic, industrially sealed shut packages are pretty much impossible to open with plain hands. Now me, being the fan of gadget and electronics, come across these quite a lot; flash drives, card readers, etc etc etc etc.... And I don't think i've ever gotten into a situation where I could just 'enjoy' my product there and then. Sure, I bought it, and I had it in hand, and I could see it clearly in front of my eyes, but somehow it was there behind an invisible forcefield of evil. Bluh.

Yesterday I managed to buy TWO items sitting in their evil packaging. I wanted to use the flash drive straight away to copy some files off my friends laptop, so I tried to open it with my bare hands. Of course, it took a good 10 minutes of strangling, twisting and trying anything to just manage to get the tip of the package open...

Of course, during this process I was covered in scratches and looked like I had just gotten in a bit of a row with an angry cat. Seriously? Is it really necessary to make it this difficult? Anyway, it wasn't about trying to get the flash drive out as much as it had become a personal vendetta against the package manufacturers. I had to rip this little @#$%&* open! It took me another 3 or 4 minutes from there to rip the rest of the thing up...

It was a downhill process from there. Total time, approx 14 minutes.

Although i'm totally against the idea of having to use scissors to open your new presents (after all, the awkwardness of opening the first package, mixed in with sharp objects doesn't sound like a great idea):

Total time? About 20 seconds. Plus I managed to cut the warranty card.

I don't get this obsession with hard-to-open packs. What's the deal? Are they cheap to produce? Or are the manufacturers worried about theft? Or what is it?! PLEASE make us some easy to use packaging that doesn't end up giving the consumer multiple injuries trying to open it, and doesn't need sharp objects used!


moon-light7 said...

It's probably for protection!! I don't know!

I've had to struggle to open a flash packaging the other day & even while using scissors I managed to scratch my fingers in several places. It's annoying indeed :-O

Anonymous said...

hahaha, i always get the salesperson to open it for me b4 i leave the store.

Check this out: http://www.treehugger.com/files/2009/01/clamshell-packaging-injuries.php

lizardo said...

as u said, u can see whats inside the package but u cant open it, good enough for them.
so why should they care about u after u already bought the item ?

Shwaish said...

u...having a hissy fit...im proud :s

i know walla i feel for u , but i only deal with this when my phone charger mal il car breaks and i go buy another one, and then i have to go hunt for siccors (cnt spell) and a5rat-ha its just not worth it

Redbelt said...

1- Cheap
2- Theft deterrent
3- Allows the consumer to see the product
4- Minimizes package waste

That is what companies think. Consumers think what you said really.

zainal said...

talking about usability and user experience hehehe ...

i face the same thing everytime i get a similar packaging, i also get plastic cuts (inspired by paper cut)

Wardat_il'7leej said...


Cuz they like to see us bleed n look like we just been attacked by dozen cats n claws of all our feathered friends

Anonymous said...

I cut myself while trying to mangle open a hard-to-open pack containing a measly flash disk recently. Arrggggg!!!! Why don't they use zip-lock packets instead?

Dr. Shale bin Agnon said...

Well done for getting it open even slightly with just your hands.

Qatar Cat said...

Whoah good on you! I never manage to open these and have to call in reinforcements. Actually, asking the salesperson to open those packs before I leave the store sounds like a great idea. Now if only I could remember that when I buy something! :P

amal said...

it's purely psychological.. they want to give you the illusion that the tiny little thing you spent a big amount of money on is actually not very easy to get.. that it's very valuable hence is protected by sealed layers..