Author Topic: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly  (Read 6618 times)

MacGyverIt

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 233
  • Location: Not in a tropical, underpopulated location. And that's just wrong.
  • What Would MacGyver Do?
Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« on: March 10, 2012, 05:33:26 PM »
I agree with the thesis of this article but disagree with her idea of approach, i.e., go to the store but then turn down the crack that is the latest gadget. IMO, don't go to the bloody store in the first place.

Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
By SUSAN KRAUSS WHITBOURNE |  March 8, 2012 |

For a certain breed of consumers, the arrival of Apple’s third-generation iPad is an occasion of monomaniacal focus and intense anticipation. Visions of how the shiny new gadget will revolutionize their lives fill their heads. They’re willing to sacrifice hours waiting in line and hard-earned cash that they can ill afford to spare, all to get their hands on Apple’s hot new toy. Just like they did, most likely, for assorted iPads and iPhones in the past. Why is it that some consumers are constantly driven to possess the newest and hottest gadgets?

The lure of the new applies to consumers with a particular personality style. Psychology researchers have shown that each of us has our own level of craving for new things. They call this “novelty-seeking,” or the sexier alternative, “neophilia.” curiosity motive, long known to cause both humans and non-humans to seek mental stimulation, exists to different degrees in all of us. Originally identified by psychiatrist Robert Cloninger, novelty-seeking is an automatic emotional orientation, one of four basic personality temperaments. People with high degrees of novelty-seeking are drawn to new situations, experiences, and, of course, possessions. They tend to make impulsive decisions, be disorganized, and are highly oriented toward seeking and getting rewards. Research also shows that novelty-seeking is associated to addictive disorders, including substance abuse.

Generally speaking, people high in neophilia, or neophiliacs, are among those compelled to be on the lookout for the newest, highest-profile technological advances and to be first in line when the newest gadget shows up in stores. The “high” they experience while cradling their latest gadget is similar to the rush of pleasure that occurs in the reward centers of the brain when any type of addiction is satisfied. Techno-gadgets are particularly appealing because they themselves have addictive qualities, as any ardent player of Angry Birds will attest. Unfortunately, the “high” will fade quickly as the brain adapts and seeks the next rewarding novelty.

These individuals become easily bored. By now, their iPad 2, once their closest companion, has faded in attractiveness and perceived usefulness. They’re ready to defriend it as if it was an annoying former acquaintance on Facebook. One day, most likely, they’ll feel the same way about the third-gen iPad as well. If you’re a true technological neophiliac, you run the risk of creating a great deal of potential unhappiness for yourself. The sacrifice you will undoubtedly make in time, energy, and money is part of the cause of your distress. More importantly, though, you can drain your emotional reserves by your constant yearning. You will definitely fail to live in the moment because the moment soon becomes mundane.

Is neophilia always bad? Definitely not. Being open to new experiences is one of the most positive personality traits you can have. You will find it easier to adapt to a changing world and will never be accused of being stuck in the past. Novelty-seeking has its benefits because it leads your brain to engage in constantly shifting stimulation, and that stimulation will keep it healthy and vital well into your later years.

When neophilia is cause for obsessions and starts to rule your life, however, you must take back control. One strategy to consider is to take one of your relatively recent acquisitions that you’re a little bored with, and put it into hibernation for a week. As the days pass, you’ll start to notice that you really miss “Old Reliable.” You realize that you actually did feel comfortable with your old friend whose buttons and touch screen you’d mastered, and you won’t feel a strong need to replace it. Another option is to temporarily indulge your neophiliac fantasy, just in a safe way. Leaving your credit cards and any other means of payment at home, go to the store, play with the gadget of your desire, and then leave—without making a purchase. Tell your brain’s reward center to simmer down. Breathe.

Next, think hard about why it’s often a bad idea to be the first one to jump on the latest trend. Early adopters are prone to doing things and making purchases that seem silly in retrospect: For instance, they stand in line overnight for product that’ll be widely available, with no wait, a couple days later. Early purchasers can also expect to pay more than consumers who buy the same products a little later. Finally, before buying any new product, read the reviews, especially the critical ones, and exercise your critical judgment. Take control, rather than letting your neophilic impulse run wild.

--------
Susan Krauss Whitbourne, Ph.D., is a professor of Psychology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her most recent book is The Search for Fulfillment, and she writes the Fulfillment at Any Age blog for Psychology Today.

arebelspy

  • Administrator
  • Senior Mustachian
  • *****
  • Posts: 27298
  • Age: -999
  • Location: Traveling the World
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2012, 06:52:01 PM »
Being in control of your impulses is one of the ultimate Mustachian ideals, IMO.

Doesn't mean you shouldn't get a new iPad.  Just means you should consciously decide if it's really important to you and why before you do.
We are two former teachers who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, and now travel the world full time with two kids.
If you want to know more about me, or how we did that, or see lots of pictures, this Business Insider profile tells our story pretty well.
We (rarely) blog at AdventuringAlong.com. Check out our Now page to see what we're up to currently.

sol

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8074
  • Age: 42
  • Location: Pacific Northwest
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2012, 08:16:10 PM »
Doesn't mean you shouldn't get a new iPad.  Just means you should consciously decide if it's really important to you and why before you do.

I like this idea.  I think we all spend money on things we know will delay our eventual financial independence.   Daily coffee, shiny itoys, organic food, a bigger mortgage, I think everyone has certain guilty pleasures they feel are worth the cost of additional years of their life given away.

I'm struggling with this very problem myself right now, because my wife and I both like our jobs and don't feel any immediate need to quit.  We could probably get by if we both quit pretty quick here, since we have a positive net worth, so we only work to build our stash for as long as it feels right.  This puts me in the position of wanting to justify additional indulgences because I don't mind working longer to have them, which feels weird to someone who is trying to buck the system by checking out early.

Physics

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 81
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2012, 06:17:13 AM »
Agreed, here and there, indulgences are fine, in my opinion, as long as you are aware you are making the trade off.

For most folks it gets dangerous because they are doing it all the time, and perhaps without thinking through the implications.  But I don't think there is anything wrong with saying, "ya know, I know I don't need this, and it is going to cost me n-hours of work to pay for it and cover its future earning potential, but I think it is worth it, in this case".  as long as those are rare events and you are buying high quality things, you can appreciate them that much more.

But the key is rarity of that event, and true appreciation of that luxury.  No semi-hedonistic spirals!

Mike Key

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 247
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Nomadic
  • Entrepreneur & Adventure Seeker
    • Tiny House - Big Backyard
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2012, 07:40:01 AM »
I actually just bought a new ipad 2 now that they are discounted. I had an ipad 1 I sold last summer. I decided I wanted to wait till the ipad 3 came out before upgrading, since I didn't think the iPad 2 was that big of an upgrade. Now that I've seen the 3 and realized I still need the ipad for my business, I decided to take my stashed money and purchase the ipad 2. :) Fun fact, the money I set aside from my sale would only hace afforded me a 16gb ipad 2 last summer, but now affords me a 32gb ipad 2. So score!

MacGyverIt

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 233
  • Location: Not in a tropical, underpopulated location. And that's just wrong.
  • What Would MacGyver Do?
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2012, 08:05:02 AM »
I've heard of "shopping addiction" referred to jokingly but it's interesting to think about purchasing bright-n-shiney objects not only for a status symbol or a perceived need but also as a short term high. Just tells me it's a lot harder for some folks to convert to Mustachianism if excitement in their life, in part, is through purchases rather than getting a thrill out of saving money.

Sort of lends to the "first world 'problems'" point - a high from purchasing high end baubles, obesity due to an abundance of food and no need to work it off, etc.

This past weekend I took the plunge and went to the movies with friends - I always just put movies of interest in my Netflix queue but I hadn't seen these friends for a while and decided to make a special occasion out of it. I did specify going to a matinee so we wouldn't pay out so much. Unfortunately I thought incorrectly that matinees ended at 1700 (it's been so long since I was a theater-goer...) so I was shocked when the woman at the ticket booth said, "$11.50". I didn't get a high, I wasn't thrilled about seeing the film, I was just outraged. I told my two friends, "This will be my movie for the year." And part of the evening was spent trying to get their attention away from the iPhones practically pasted to their faces. *sigh*

Once we've stopped experiencing that buyer's high and sometimes have the opposite experience of laboring/considering a purchase, that's really when we've set ourselves apart from the mainstream.

Tim

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 30
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2012, 10:28:04 AM »
What I've found with all these new gadgets and upgrades is that the best defense is to not pay attention. Like you said MacGyver, don't even enter the store.

A clear example in my own life is when I walked into a video store and they had a very high resolution TV on display. I asked about it and walked out with a flyer. The next day I was on Amazon researching a new TV. The TV I own (which is about three years old) was not good enough anymore. I did snap out of it but it goes to show how powerful this stuff can be.

Personally, I have no desire to bring the iPad 3 into my life. I have an iPad 1 and it suits me just fine. Apple would have to come up with something pretty incredible for me to consider upgrading. I can't even fathom what that would be.

Tim

MacGyverIt

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 233
  • Location: Not in a tropical, underpopulated location. And that's just wrong.
  • What Would MacGyver Do?
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2012, 03:06:25 PM »
Mentioned this to a buddy but haven't yet cited the experience on the forum -- I've observed multiple friends, all of whom would define themselves as non-materialistic, with an iPhone, an iPad *and* a laptop. One of the tech-triumvirate owners recounted how much easier it is to travel with an iPad.... all though she had a laptop (and iPhone) also in tow.

I don't view these folks as the "keeping up with the Joneses" type at all, which makes this phenomena all the more puzzling????

The point about not going into the store... I was raised in a religious household (disclaimer: I am an athiest) and we were always warned to not do something that could open us up to temptation. Which makes total sense. And this does seem to apply to the anti-consumerist MMM method. For myself, I do think canceling cable has helped to reduce the "buy, buy, buy" message and consumerist indoctrination that is cable television, commercials and print media. I'm utterly disconnected from the advertising mainstream (to the point that I couldn't make it through an entire 7-day Hulu Plus trial, the commercials were so offensive to me!) which further enables my Mustachianism.  Because I have canceled that destructive message input, my thinking is now oriented to the total cost of ownership, want-versus-need...

We're all re-wiring our brain having disconnected from the Mainstream Matrix.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2012, 05:56:39 PM by MacGyverIt »

Mike Key

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 247
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Nomadic
  • Entrepreneur & Adventure Seeker
    • Tiny House - Big Backyard
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2012, 04:54:48 PM »
my thinking is now oriented to the total cost of ownership, want-versus-need...

Oddly enough that factor is why I stopped buying generic PC's and switched to Apple's products. True Cost over time is reduced, so long as you don't get caught up in the newest and greatest every year cycle.

dancedancekj

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 78
  • Location: Nebraska
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2012, 05:20:21 PM »
I never understood why anyone would want an iPad, when a laptop and a smart phone accomplish the same tasks in a more efficient manner. If I need to work or surf or watch something at home, my laptop works fine. If I need something on the go, my phone works fine. And they both function in their respective capacities better than an iPad would.

arebelspy

  • Administrator
  • Senior Mustachian
  • *****
  • Posts: 27298
  • Age: -999
  • Location: Traveling the World
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2012, 06:10:50 PM »
I never understood why anyone would want an iPad, when a laptop and a smart phone accomplish the same tasks in a more efficient manner. If I need to work or surf or watch something at home, my laptop works fine. If I need something on the go, my phone works fine. And they both function in their respective capacities better than an iPad would.

It's a personal thing.  When I got my iPad, it replaced 90-95% of my laptop use.

When I go to use the internet, I use the iPad.

I can see some not "getting it," but for me, I'd much rather own an iPad than laptop/desktop.
We are two former teachers who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, and now travel the world full time with two kids.
If you want to know more about me, or how we did that, or see lots of pictures, this Business Insider profile tells our story pretty well.
We (rarely) blog at AdventuringAlong.com. Check out our Now page to see what we're up to currently.

Mike Key

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 247
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Nomadic
  • Entrepreneur & Adventure Seeker
    • Tiny House - Big Backyard
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2012, 06:35:15 PM »
There are some great advantages to the iPad. As an owner of a MacBook Air, I already know what the advantages of an ultralight notebook are. However, I've also owned, and then gave up my ipad until last week. There are some serious upsides for presenters and business owners. For me personally however, it's mostly the business end. I'm a developer/designer/marketer, I'm just expected to be in the know, and testing via simulator is great, but clients love when you break out tools and show them how their app will function in real life. :) But I agree with "arebelspy" it's personal.

Grigory

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 228
  • Location: Seattle, WA
  • (rhymes with "story")
    • my attempt at blogging
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2012, 08:17:59 PM »
I won my current laptop in a contest, but the one I had before cost about 40% as much as this new iPad (I got it at Black Friday for $200!) and it lasted me three years. Yes, iPads are shiny (even though that's still the most ridiculous product name I've ever heard) and they might do almost everything laptops can, but why pay more than twice as much for less functionality?..

And correct me if I'm wrong, but don't you need to buy a data plan to use an iPad? Or can you just hook it up to your home network?

arebelspy

  • Administrator
  • Senior Mustachian
  • *****
  • Posts: 27298
  • Age: -999
  • Location: Traveling the World
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #13 on: March 12, 2012, 08:36:43 AM »
I won my current laptop in a contest, but the one I had before cost about 40% as much as this new iPad (I got it at Black Friday for $200!) and it lasted me three years. Yes, iPads are shiny (even though that's still the most ridiculous product name I've ever heard) and they might do almost everything laptops can, but why pay more than twice as much for less functionality?..

And correct me if I'm wrong, but don't you need to buy a data plan to use an iPad? Or can you just hook it up to your home network?

Like I said, it's a personal thing.  You claim it does so much less, has less functionality, etc.  But it literally replaced 90-95% of my laptop use.  I went from using a laptop several hours/day to using the tablet several hours per day, and the laptop maybe 15 minutes.

It has nothing to do with it being "shiny" and has everything to do with being better for me.  I get more functionality out of it, not less.  I can read things much more easily, and comfortably.  I enjoy using it much more than I do a traditional laptop.

My iPad (1) I got two years ago, and planning on using it for at least another year, so it should last as long as your 3 year laptop.  And even a year from now I bet it'll resell for more than your 3 year old laptop.

The data plan thing is wrong.  Most iPads sold are WiFi only.  Others have 3G built in and you can get with a data plan, but it's not required (and you can even turn off the data plan on those and use them WiFi only).
We are two former teachers who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, and now travel the world full time with two kids.
If you want to know more about me, or how we did that, or see lots of pictures, this Business Insider profile tells our story pretty well.
We (rarely) blog at AdventuringAlong.com. Check out our Now page to see what we're up to currently.

MsLogica

  • Guest
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #14 on: March 14, 2012, 05:33:48 AM »
I own an iPad 2 (I'm writing this on it in fact), and iPhone 4GS and a laptop, and I don't think of myself as antimustachian.  As Arebelspy says in an earlier comment, the iPad replaces a considerable amount of my laptop time.  I only go on my laptop once or twice a week now, and use my iPad for everything else.  I use my iPhone when I'm out and about.  I read a lot more and learn a lot more since getting an iPad, because I make more use of those odd minutes when I'm free to browse the web and look up things.  I suppose I could use that time to look at LOLcat pictures, but I don't, so I don't see my use of the iPad as negative.

I'm not interested in upgrading any of my gadgets, because they all work fine, and I guess that's where Mustachians might differ from hardcore Apple fans.  Of course, if I went into an Apple store and played with a new product, I would probably want it, but I would tell myself off and not go into the store in the first place!

Mike Key

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 247
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Nomadic
  • Entrepreneur & Adventure Seeker
    • Tiny House - Big Backyard
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #15 on: March 14, 2012, 07:03:49 AM »
I posted this on the new post on the front of the site today

Quote
Switching to Apple products actually cured my gadget addiction. I used to build custom gaming PC’s and was always upgrading things endlessly.


Now I’m down too 3 devices. IPhone 4, MacBook Air, iPad 2. And since I’m a programmer/web developer/app developer I can justify all 3 for business because they do help my business.


No need for the iPad 3. My MacBook Air is a dual core and a few years old, and still works great.


I think the gadget addiction can be worse for non-apple users. I have a friend who buys a new Android every 6 months it seems. But most Apple users I know continue to use the same products for long time. Two developer friends I know still run G5 Mac Pro’s.


Seems like only the trendiest people who pretend to have endless disposable income upgrade every product cycle.
[/color]
IPhone 4 was released on June 24, 2010, and my MacBook Air is a June 2010 model as well. Only my iPad is newer.

MountainMan

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 165
  • Location: Minneapolis
Re: Why You Want the New iPad So Badly
« Reply #16 on: March 14, 2012, 10:32:43 AM »
I got a Macbook pro because I needed it for college.

As it turns out, I can dual-boot MS Windows on it for class.  I can also run virtual machines on it.  (You can even run Linux directly on it, but I only run Linux under virtual machines.)  It has a awesome HDMI quality display port, so I can plug it into a HDMI TV and display whatever is on the screen, from Netflix to Hulu.  It has completely replaced all my other machines.  I have a Dell desktop, an old Emachines laptop, an old HP laptop, and a Samsung netbook.

The Samsung netbook sucks, IMO, and the Macbook pro 13'' screen is much better, plus it's light weight.

The Emachines laptop is way past it's usefulness.  It's breaking down and hardware doesn't work. 

The HP laptop was purchased cheap from a State Surplus outlet as a backup.  I'm running Linux on it, but I don't need to use it.

The Dell desktop is slightly less powerful than my Macbook Pro.  I don't even use it.

The Apple MacBook pro has replaced all of this.  It has a great repair warranty and has a reputation for tough-built hardware that lasts.  I wasn't sure about the operating system at first, but I've grown to love it.  It is really smooth.  Really changes the experience of computing, for me.

I can see keeping this for another 5 or 10 years, and getting rid of all the other computing hardware I have and reducing the clutter.  I would normally have balked at the price point, but I'm completely sold on this product now.  This is one of those things that paying for quality up front pays dividends later.  That's how I see.