Here’s why I think Yahoo Tech is a serious threat to CNET:
“Advisor” Blogs — Sure they’re “hokey,” as Richard MacManus points out, but this is at least an attempt at reviews and advice that AVERAGE PEOPLE can relate to — and they have four different strokes for four different kinds of folks — The Boomer, The Working Guy, The Techie Diva, and The Mom. Compare that to Kent German on CNET — he’s a smart guy who knows his cell phones, but man, what a sourpuss.
Focus on user reviews rather than expert reviews — most people would rather trust reviews from their peers than some expert — isn’t that the whole 2.0 principle!?! (Social media is all the rage with the Web 2.0 fan club…except when it comes to their precious tech. Then they bemoan the lack of “experts.”) There are links to CNET and PC World reviews if you must here from an “authority.”
Q&A on products from Yahoo Answers — I shudder to say it, but this actually feels like “synergy.”
My Tech allows you to save products you’re considering — a simple but useful customization feature — and for those who like to write reviews, you can aggregate those in one place as well.
Yahoo understands what CNET and the geekosphere do not — that most people are interested in consumer technology, but it’s really not a big deal for them. We in the geekosphere may live and die for technology, but it’s not a religion for most people.
Both Richard and Om Malik bemoan the site’s “consumerism” because it doesn’t have the sober tech-as-religion feel of CNET. But in the all important advertising game of who will reach the larger audience of cell phone and laptop buyers, I’d give Yahoo the edge.