Sexist gadgets: Pink no longer means smaller, slower and for women only


A few years back if you presented a gadget in pink it was likely a death sentence for said hardware derivative.

There seemed to be a bunch of product development gurus sitting in a boardroom who decided that the best way to target women and sell them tech was to shrink it and make it pink.

Spoiler: this wasn’t a great plan to target women.

But the problem wasn’t with the colour the pink. Pink gadgets were generally made smaller and with a decrease in size, came a drop in specs.

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I’m presuming the gurus in the boardroom are the same ones who presume women only worry about aesthetics and don’t really understand the mechanics that go into their cars and computers.

The idea that they could actually wrap their head around chip sets and motherboards likely never entered their heads. And with this mentality arose the “pink it and shrink it” marketing ploy and the ultimate death hammer to any pink gadget released.

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Now, I happen to be a fan of the colour pink. I also happen to be a fan of pink gadgets. But I’m not willing to forgo high end specs because of it.

Which is why I’m rather glad the idea of pinking and shrinking has recently been kicked to the curb by a lot of tech companies.

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I guess we can start by thanking Apple, who showed a middle finger to what I'll call the PS (it sounds so similar to BS I think it works) when they released the iPhone 6s in a rose gold derivative towards the end of 2015.

Apple might have called it rose gold but we can all agree that was a soft pink. And everyone flocked to purchase them because they were great phones that also looked good.

While Apple are cagey about actual sales figures, they kept the rose gold option in future phone models including the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7s.

Linda van der Nest, marketing Exec for the SA's iStore adds, “Our rose gold iPhone, iPad and Mac range was a popular colour for our customers when launched and continues to remain a consistent choice.”

The rose gold option was finally dropped with the release of the iPhone 8, when the company chose to go back to a minimalist approach offering up only three basic colours for the model. Three years on, since the release of the 6s, the pink gadget craze hasn’t slowed down.

Pink is no longer a gender specific colour and has rather become a stable hue in product choices.

Here are my current favourite “pink” gadgets that have recently hit shelves.

READ MORE: ‘It's no longer funny or weird to see another woman in gaming’

The Samsung Galaxy S9

The recently released flagship from Samsung offers a lilac purple option. Say what you want, I’m calling is metallic pink.

The phone may set you back around R15 000 but the tech specs are convincing. While it looks similar to its predecessor, the S9 brags a rather impressive 12 megapixel camera that includes augmented reality for animojis.

If you choose to go bigger with the S9+ (also available in lilac purple) you’ll pocket a 12 and 12 megapixel dual camera.

On reaching out to Samsung South Africa for comment on the popularity of the new offering, the company was not willing to release early sales figures. However, on the release of the phone internationally, there was a marked interest in the new colour option on social media.

Razer Quartz Edition

Arguably the leaders in gaming peripherals: world gamer famous Razer recently dropped their Quartz edition set.

Basically, they took their best selling products and changed up the colour. They’re calling it Quartz but, again - these babies are pink.

Interestingly enough, when I first shared this collection on my own facebook page, the majority of responses came from men - all wanting to grab the items on offer in the current colour scheme. Because, they look funky and different.

Again, Razer didn’t shrink the tech. They’ve taken some of their best selling products including the Blackwidow Tournament edition Chroma V2 keyboard and their flagship Kraken Pro V2 headset and simply added a new colour to the range.

The range is available here and I’m in the process of replacing all my current peripherals with this range. I’m planning on swapping out the actual hardware for the same hardware but just in the new colour.

The Nintendo Switch Splatoon 2 Bundle

Okay, I know that this isn’t a completely pink piece of hardware. But the addition of the colour shows that pink is becoming universal now.

My favourite game on one of my favourite consoles can be celebrated by purchasing the hardware bundle which includes a bright neon green and pink controller. Which ultimately ties in to the theme of the game.

The console itself is glorious but the pink and green controller just adds a level of cool that I think mine is missing and now needs to be upgraded to.

Images supplied by Sam Wright

Follow Sam on Twitter and subscribe to her YouTube channel here.

What’s your favourite pink gadget? Send us a photo and tell us what you love most about it and we could feature it in a follow up article.

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