Not all tech products succeed once on the market, and some are killed off with little warning. Flashback looked back at failed tech products to see what we can learn by studying their demises.



Latest Episodes

#15: The Motorola RAZR

March 25th, 2021 · 47 minutes

This week, Quinn and Stephen talk about one of the world's first cool phones, and how its parent company was bent on destroying its good name.

#14: OS/2

February 19th, 2021 · 41 minutes

In an effort to keep Microsoft from controlling the PC software industry, in the 1980s, IBM created OS/2, an operating system meant to give its computers a competitive advantage.

#13: The CrunchPad

February 2nd, 2021 · 45 minutes

In 2008, a vision for a simple, browser-based tablet as born. Just a few years later, after failed lawsuits and rip-off products, no one had anything to show for their work.

#12: The Amazon Fire Phone

January 19th, 2021 · 60 minutes

This time, Quinn and Stephen look back — in 3D! — at the Amazon Fire Phone. Between its operating system, unusual gesture system and a price that was way too high, it was dead on arrival. After that, the guys go shopping for each other on Amazon.

#11: The Nexus Q

January 5th, 2021 · 53 minutes

In 2012, Google announced a sphere-shaped media player that was meant to be used with a TV or sound system. It was a disaster.

#10: Pebble

June 18th, 2020 · 47 minutes

The smartwatch movement didn't start with Apple or Google, but a little company named Pebble. Through a series of hugely successful Kickstarters, the company put out several well-reviewed products before being steamrolled by the platform-makers.

#9: The Apple III

June 4th, 2020 · 46 minutes

The Apple II was a big hit, but before the Macintosh took over, Cupertino shipped a couple of duds, the worst of which was the ill-fated (and kinda melty) Apple III.

#8: The Microsoft Kin

May 21st, 2020 · 34 minutes

Microsoft was late to the smartphone party, and its first entrance, the Kin, was designed for teens and young adults who didn't want or need an iPhone, Android phone or Blackberry. The only problem? That audience didn't really exist.

#7: AOL Instant Messenger

May 7th, 2020 · 41 minutes

It is time to add Stephen and Quinn to your Buddy List.

#6: The Be Computer Company

April 23rd, 2020 · 41 minutes

Started by former members of Apple's leadership team, Be was formed to take on the Mac and other computers of the mid-90s. The company wrote its own operating system and shipped dual-CPU towers before failing to be bought by Apple and slowly fading away.