The new Chumby, a small wire device announced yesterday, is hard to describe in a sentence. A wireless appliance, the Chumby is part alarm clock, part internet radio, and mostly widget display. It’s so Jetsons. And if they figure out the wireless reception issues, it should be a smashing success. The Chumby resides in an electronics category, yet to be defined.
This is probably what Apple faced when deciding what to call the iPhone. It’s so not a phone — but Apple decided by putting the little Apple “i” in front of the word phone it would impregnate the name with all sorts of features and benefits. Brilliant!
I suspect the word “Chumby” will become the default name for this category of wireless appliance, but since the world is running on Internet time and viral comms and reduced engineering cycles times, we may just have to wait this one out.