Mercy Killing: Verizon Deletes the Unpopular HubS

The bizarrely anachronistic Verizon Hub has been killed off, says Dave Zatz. Hard to tell if this happened before everybody decided not to buy it, or after.

The idea seems like a good one from a decade ago: A cordless (not cellular but VOIP) phone with a little computer screen in its base from which you could order pizza, send messages to Verizon mobile phones and (eventually) program your Verizon DVR. It required the rarest of customer: An early adopter with cellular, landline and TV all from Verizon, who wanted no part of ever switching to a different carrier for any variation of service or handset, and who didn't mind organizing their life solely around Verizon-branded apps, including proprietary picture-mail, calendar and VZNavigator.

Our own Matt Buchanan, who I happen to know tried very hard to say something nice, in the end dismissed its hardware as "shitty," its timing as "unfortunate," its content as "useless" and its OS as "not particularly a joy."

So what went wrong? "Probably a failure of marketing and pricing," said Zatz. "Requiring the Hub to be purchased solely via Verizon Wireless at $200 plus $35/month with a two year contract is pretty steep barrier to entry when introducing a new product category to the mainstream." You mean a shitty, anachronistic new product category, don't you Dave? [ZatzNotFunny]