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tobdec
08-18-2011, 04:04 PM
Microcenter now carries arduino....I just saw it yesterday. People are going nuts around here for anything arduino. I don't understand it....they literally have about every product arduino makes on the shelf, countless mags including make, digg, robot, servo, etc...yes not a d*m thing about parallax. Aside from mcu's alone parallax makes excellant projects in the robot field.

GordonMcComb
08-18-2011, 04:53 PM
Microcenter now carries arduino....yes not a d*m thing about parallax. Aside from mcu's alone parallax makes excellant projects in the robot field.

And yet Fry's, a store similar to Microcenter, only stocks Parallax. No Arduino to be seen. You also won't see Arduino in Radio Shack (at least I don't), but you do see Parallax products.

Maybe someone who distributes Arduino products caught the right ear of a Microcenter buyer. Maybe Microcenter has been watching the online community and is reacting to the market forces it sees. I'd view this as a sales opportunity. If Microcenter is willing to sell Arduino, they'll probably also sell, at the very least Bot-bots, and probably more.

There is a favoritism toward Arduino in the magazines you cite, but that's also reflecting the market. It's actually a little hard to sell an article on the BS2 or Propeller, because they're older products and the editors want the latest and greatest. Never mind the Arduino and Propeller are the same age. They see it at the board level, and the Uno is less than a year old. I have several article projects in the wings waiting on the PropBOE to be released. It's powerful, it's priced right, it's got great features, and best yet, it's new.

-- Gordon

tobdec
08-18-2011, 06:42 PM
The computer repair company I work for also has a franchise radioshack built into it....the summit is this weekend and I allready asked if arduino was being talked about. Aparently arduino has never even offered to radioshack. Parallax products don't sell very well here in radioshack, For some reason or another radioshack isnt the techie hangout nemore seems to be all about phones...phones phones phones! I worked for a corporate radioshack a few years back in our mall....never sold a single parallax product besides to myself.

jdolecki
08-18-2011, 08:46 PM
The one in Downeres Grove Illinois is stocked to the hilt with Arduino/Sparkfun stuff. GPS, Bootloaders, sensors of all types. boards and shields.

tobdec
08-18-2011, 09:12 PM
a radioshack? is it corporate or franchise? i know franchise rs aren't allowed arduino its not on the perfered vendor list. I do love my discount on parallax products!

GordonMcComb
08-18-2011, 10:14 PM
I'm not privy to the plans between Parallax or Radio Shack, but I'd take at face value the intention is to cross-market more than in the past, and to provide a greater level of DIY support -- maybe books like the kind Forrest does for them, but possibly special projects on the new DIY web site Radio Shack launched, and so forth. RS's new venture into the builder's space suggests they have a renewed interest in the hobbyist market. I think RS has taken notice of the popularity of things like Maker's Faire, and realized they were leaving money on the table.

-- Gordon

Ken Gracey
08-18-2011, 10:25 PM
I'm not privy to the plans between Parallax or Radio Shack, but I'd take at face value the intention is to cross-market more than in the past, and to provide a greater level of DIY support -- maybe books like the kind Forrest does for them, but possibly special projects on the new DIY web site Radio Shack launched, and so forth. RS's new venture into the builder's space suggests they have a renewed interest in the hobbyist market. I think RS has taken notice of the popularity of things like Maker's Faire, and realized they were leaving money on the table.

-- Gordon

In a nutshell, yep. Good summary, Gordon.

BTW, you will find the same Parallax selection from RadioShack in the Fry's Electronics stores.

Ken Gracey

RonP
08-18-2011, 10:38 PM
When I go to Radio Shack's in my area the display case under the registers usually have a some discontinued product or display unit with a reduced price a lot of times there is empty space. Waste of space IMO, what would be nice is a WAM kit opened up and displayed so customers can see what is inside the blister pack. I know when I bought mine years ago I had a hard time trying to see what was in the kit. It might get noticed by the DIY type more.

EDIT: Just saw this (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?133909-New-packaging-and-products-for-RadioShack-stores-a-quick-look!) post great start.

tobdec
08-18-2011, 11:38 PM
Ive noticed all too much too that the employees at radioshack have no clue what parallax even is....I mean cmon jesus christ its radioshack! The training manuals for the corporate stores never even mention microcontrollers.

GordonMcComb
08-19-2011, 01:51 AM
Ive noticed all too much too that the employees at radioshack have no clue what parallax even is

This is where Parallax-driven projects, plans, follow-on kits, PDF booklets, Instructables, whatever. could come into play. These types of products have always been self service, and the sales force there just can't be called on to proactively make the sale. It has to come organically.

So the trick is to come up with ways to encourage posters to share their Parallax-RadioShack projects. Some of it will come from people just interested in blogging or writing about their ideas, but more will come from "clever" things like affiliate linking sales.

I'm sure I'm not the first to realize that while Parallax doesn't have an affiliate program (at least not that I know of), the Shack does. And if Radio Shack is going to be selling these products online as well as in their physical stores (an assumption I happily make, but I could be wrong), then this is a nice opportunity for people to help pay for their hobby, while furthering the cause. They'll share their projects, hopefully make a dime or two in affiliate commissions, spread the word, and help others enjoy this great playpen of ours.

In business the best deal is the win-win. This is one of those.

-- Gordon