Me, stupid? Of course not.
The most interesting conversation I had this week was with Darryl Rosenfeldt, director of Connect Pro services at Future Shop.I had called with a question that has been nagging at me for some time, as I grappled helplessly with a slew of home electronic products. Am I getting stupider (more stupid?) or is technology getting smarter? Ever the diplomat, Rosenfeldt came down on my side, explaining that I’m not alone in finding home technology hard to set up. Part of the problem is that products are changing so quickly, explained Rosenfeldt, who says that computer manufacturers who used to introduce new product annually are now operating on a three to six month schedule. That’s why he’s betting that services like ConnectPro, which offers installation and connectivity support to homeowners, are bound to grow. “I believe there’s not a single Canadian out there – maybe apart from the five per cent who are ultra-techie — who hasn’t needed our service at some time, and I’m sure there are lots of people just living with little problems because they don’t know how to fix them,” he told me. ConnectPro employees can he hired either by hour, or for a flat rate for a specific job. They’ll also give you up to one hour to offer a free estimate of what your job entails. In the works is a remote service that will allow ConnectPro employees to assist consumers over the phone. I couldn’t let Rosenfeldt off the phone without asking about trends in large appliances, a subject I’m currently researching. He says that while appliance cycles are slower than computer technology, big changes are coming. In fact, he told me it won’t be too long before your fridge can tell you when you’re out of milk or eggs. Hhhm – can a dryer that finds all those missing socks be far behind? Now that would be genuis.