In today's high-tech market, companies strive for delivering cutting edge technology to consumers. As new hightech products are launched onto the market at an unprecedented pace, it becomes increasingly difficult to differentiate product offering from that of competitors. One of the strategies pursued by high-tech companies in order to gain competitive advantage through product differentiation has been the development of multifunctional devices. Multifunctional devices, including the Nokia Nseries line or Apple iPhones, are no longer positioned as a single core function products and may be concurrently competing on markets previously reserved for mobile phones, music players or PDAs. There are three major problems related to the increasing proliferation and strategic importance of multifunctional products for high-tech companies: * Lack of guidelines for successful developments of multifunctional products in the increasingly competitive market. * Underestimating the consequences of consumer disadvantageous position in contemporary high-tech market and the resulting importance of emotional reactions to new products. * Underestimating consumer skepticism toward new products stemming from the discrepancy between cognitive and emotional responses to new products. The overriding objective of this project is to examine consumer reactions to new products and to address the problems outlined above. Three interrelated subprojects have been designed to achieve this goal. Subproject 1: Multifunctional innovations The purpose of this subproject is to examine what types of multifunctional products are likely to succeed in the marketplace, and to be able to give recommendations to firms as to what type of multifunctional products would be worthwhile investing in. The project builds on categorization and diffusion of innovation studies. Subproject 2: The Role of Emotions in Consumer Reactions to New Products The purpose of this subproject is to investigate the influence of emotional reactions elicited by and experienced in product use on consumer evaluation of new products and product use (use diffusion), with implications for product design, positioning and enhancement of innovation adoption. Subproject 3: Consumer Skepticism toward New Products (CSTNP) The purpose of this subproject is to develop a comprehensive conceptual model of CSTNP that can be used to predict to what extent consumers will be skeptical toward a new product and what the consequences will be. Specific objectives include conceptualization of CSTNP in the high-tech consumer goods context, exploring the antecedents and consequences (cognitive, affective and conative) of CSTNP.
|01.01.2008 → 31.12.2009
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