It’s true. People are ditching big stereos with honkin’ speakers for little things to which you connect your iPod. And while most people opt for cheaper units, there’s a growing number of high-end iPod docks that sound pretty damn good.
But this isn’t the case everywhere in the world. I was asked to be part of an expert focus group at the transmitCHINA conference a few days ago where the manufacturer of a multiroom audio system wanted ideas as to how penetrate the Chinese market.
There was much discussion until a well-spoken Chinese man spoke up.
“You’re all wrong,” he said. “In China, people want to show off their success. Those who can afford such a system don’t want it to be hidden. They want speakers the size of refrigerators to go with their 10,000 square-ft marble-floored houses. A middle-class person will want the same. Meanwhile, the 800 million farmers who aspire to be rich don’t need multiroom sound units because they live in one-room houses. This product won’t work in China.”