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Design and Technology Product Analysis: Radio Alarm Clock Assignment

This report will comment on how good or bad this product was when it first came out on to the market. Since this product went through its design steps things in the world of electronics have become much more advanced the circuit boards have halved in size and so have the components. The product is very bland compared with the modern day alarm clock which is a lot smaller and has many different colors and are there for are much more aesthetically pleasing because they have developed the product in to much smaller and more aesthetically pleasing things to behold. The modern day alarm clocks include many more functions and are easier to use.

Function:

The radio alarm clock is designed to be aesthetically pleasing, which it is to a certain extent because it has nice curves and the clock face is at an angle so it stands out more. Having the display at an angle also makes it much easier to see from above and straight on. The time display on the alarm clock is in red letters so that you can see it clearly in the light and the dark. The light that is emitted from the clock is not bright enough to keep you awake. As the radio alarm clocks name suggests it also has a radio.

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You can program the alarm to wake you up in the morning with the radio. However the volume of the alarm is the same volume as for the radio so if you turn down the volume too much then you will not be woken up. There is also the same problem with the regular alarm where by the volume can be turned down so that you might not be woken up by it. These functions may include weekend sleeper function which means that when it is turned on the alarm clock will not wake you during the weekend. Another function of the modern alarm clock is to have two alarms a radio alarm and a buzzer the re is also a slumber function where by you can press a button and the alarm will go off for a set period of time.

Production:

This product is mass-produced. The components come from all over the world and are assembled in one place usually. This follows the trend with most electronic products such as computers these have hundreds of components and are usually assembled close to the retail market that they are hoping to sell it to. In this case the product was assembled in Malaysia and purchased in Singapore. The method that is commonly used to mass produce products like these is injection moulding. This is agood method to make many hundreds of the product

Other safety aspects of the product include the material of the casing, which is plastic. Plastic is a very poor insulator of electricity and therefore greatly decreases the risk of electrocution.

Materials:

The outer casing of the alarm clock is made out of hard durable plastic. Plastic is used for a number of reasons firstly it’s a strong durable material it can be made in many different colors. The plastic on the inside is flimsy and brittle. This is because it does not need to be strong seeing as the outer casing of the alarm clock already protects it.

Design& use of subsystems:

The design of the product and the use of the subsystems are simple but effective. As you can see from the pictures the casing is made out of black opaque plastic. Which is not very aesthetically pleasing however the shape of the body is what gives it appeal. This is what I would say is the products x-factor. The clock face is slanted and the sides are pleasingly round. These factors might give the product the cutting edge that it needs to be better than the competition in the market place.

The design of the buttons is very bad too they are very small and for instance to change the time you have to hold down several of them down at once in order to complete this simple function. The surface area of the buttons is also very small witch makes it hard to press them down properly and after holding the buttons down for some time it becomes very uncomfortable. This is a design fault that should have been taken care of in the early stage of the development process.

Aesthetics:

The aesthetics of the product as I have said before are very bland. There are no features that strike you as being particularly bold or special. The product has no color and its only saving grace is the shape of it the rounded edges and the slanted display area give the product its only good appearance factor. The aesthetic appeal of factors nowadays compared to this product

is immense modern radio alarm clocks come in a range of colors are much smaller and more comfortable to fit in to the hand. A lot more thought and vigorous testing goes in to making a product these days and there are now numerous different colors that you can buy the one product in. There is also a lot of thought gone in to the ergonomics of the product. ergonomics is the science of how things fit in to your hand.

Conclusion:

To make this product more aesthetically pleasing I would rebuild it in a number of different colors. This would make the consumer feel that they are getting some thing that is made for their personal tastes. Also to make it more aesthetically pleasing I would try and reduce the size of the casing by making the circuit more compact. Making the product smaller will also make it more comfortable to fit in your hand and if it is made small enough then it could also be advertised as being suitable for travel purposes. I would also re-design the buttons on the alarm clock and per haps make them out of a material such as rubber to make the product easier and more comfortable to use, when changing the time or adjusting the alarm.

These functions may include weekend sleeper function, which means that when it is turned on the alarm clock will not wake you during the weekend. Another function of the modern alarm clock is to have two alarms a radio alarm and a buzzer the re is also a slumber function where by you can press a button and the alarm will go off for a set period of time.

In summary the modern day alarm clock has many more functions in a smaller casing. It is also made more aesthetically pleasing by the wide range of colors and the slender shape of it. The size also makes the modern day alarm clock more suited to traveling. The alarm clock that I am investigating is an old model and the perfect opposite of the modern day version of the product.

Environmental impact:

When it comes to the environment you will soon find that the plastic of the casing is not recycled nor does it have any symbols to show that it is reusable. This would have been a good selling point seeing as some people are very conscious of the state of the environment and will only purchase things that are recycled or reusable and they could have maybe saved some money from using recycled plastic, which is also better for the environment because it is reused. The product does not have the iso 2000 mark on it either which means it is definitely not a very environmentally friendly product

Cost:

The cost of making this product cant be very much at all the main material is plastic which is very cheap because it is not natural and does not have to be extracted from anything unlike metals such as iron ore that has to be extracted from the earth. The components inside the alarm clock are also very cheap. One of the ways that they kept down the production cost was by using inferior plastics for the components on the inside of the casing there is no need for them to be as strong as the plastic casing because they are protected already by the casing so that there is no chance of any objects disturbing the electronics of the clock.

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