It may take you a second, but you know what I am talking about when I say a “six month disposable product”. Think of the times when you say “I need a new…” and within a day or two, you have whatever that “…” was. These aren’t products that are designed to last only six months (or maybe they are) but that is inevitably how long they last.
My biggest six month disposable product is earbuds. I like earbuds, I like how small they are, and how light they are. What I don’t like is that over the past four years, I have bought EIGHT different sets of earbuds, none of them has fit “just right” and ALL OF THEM have broke within 6-8 months of me purchasing them. Can you guess what prompted me to write this today? You guessed it, one of my earbuds just stopped working. It just stopped. Guess its back to shopping online for a new pair.
The more I started to think about this, there are a lot of these types of products floating around our lives. Products that usually last me only six months on average are as follows:
- Earbuds (see above)
- Cellphone cases (I am resisting replacing mine, after seven months it’s looking pretty tattered)
- Hockey sticks (these things snap all the time, or it could be me breaking them out of frustration)
- Cellphone car charger
- And many more
These items cost around $20 a pop for cheap replacements. A lot of people say “what’s $20?” and don’t think twice when they make their replacement purchase. However, those Andrew Jackson’s add up over the course of a year. Now one solution is to take care of your stuff better, but odds are if you are buying cheap goods, they aren’t as durable as their expensive counterparts.
My Current Headphone Dilemma
I have spent $75 in the past year on 3 pairs of cheap earbuds, replacement buds, and shipping and handling charges. Each one of them has had one ear just stop working all of a sudden. I am not ruling out user error, but really, how do you misuse earphones?
Since my most recent pair has stopped working, I am back in the market for a new pair. I am thinking of making a significant purchase, paying for value and buying earbuds that will last over a year or two. If I pay $100 for a pair and they last for 2 years, I am coming out ahead. Then again, I fear the product category of earbuds itself is no good and I am resigned to buying a new pair every six months and the $100 purchase could be wasteful.
Does anyone have any suggestions or experiences with earbuds specifically? What kinds of six month disposable products do you go through on a regular basis?