This is the E-mail I sent to Archos. This E-mail is in the original form (with 1 correction, in brackets, in the suggestion part), and it is VERY long. Enjoy reading. Please tell me what you think about my E-mail, your comments, and any suggestions. Greatly appreciate it. We hope Archos is reading this. Also, Do you guys think I hit the nail of why Archos is unpopular?
I got a response from Archos!!! This is the response.
I have escalated this information for further review, thank you for taking the
time to put this together, and I will make sure to get in the hands of the
Looks like Archos does read. But I have to send this E-mail to technical support though. Well, at least they received it and read it. It's a start.
I am writing this email to Archos because I would like to give suggestions to Archos for the 6th generation PMPs. I was told by a representative to send an email to this address and ask you to transfer this to the correct department.
I'm writing this email to Archos because I've owned an Archos product (404) and I think its a excellent product. I think there is not enough people that have this excellent device and I would love to see Archos products be as popular as the iPods. I see a huge potential in Archos products and I think Archos products can be easily popularized. With all due respect, I think Archos have done some stupid things to not let Archos products to be popular. Here's what I think Archos MUST change in order to be much more successful. I would like these suggestions to be taken very seriously. In fact, I would like Henri Crohas to read what I have to offer. I think if Archos really take my suggestions seriously and do them, Archos will really give Steve Jobs a huge headache. I would love to see people having Archos players rather than iPods in a few years.
First, let's analyze why Apple iPods are so popular. From what I've seen, there are 3 main reasons why iPods are incredibly popular.
1. Excellent, stylish design and quality
2. Exceedingly intuitive and user friendly interface
Now, let's analyze why Archos is not popular. There are 4 things that makes Archos not popular
1. Codec plug-ins.
No other company charges their customer money to buy extra codecs. When Archos does that, it gives a customer a really bad impression of the company. Codecs should be included for free. Almost every review site's review on Archos product has a con of having to spend lots of money on codecs and WiFi. It is just stupid. Negative customer reviews are about this as well. It's exceeding stupid and when Archos is doing this, it's almost like a door blocking customers from buying Archos products. I don't think it would kill Archos to include all the codecs. Yes, I know Archos have to pay a fee to put codecs, but how much? From my estimation, it's probably cost like a dollar to include all the codec on a single Archos machine. Yes, I know not everyone need the codecs or WiFi, but why do you have the WiFi chips in the 605? Bottom line, Archos MUST include all of the codecs that used to have a fee on them as standard on every Archos player. It will make a huge difference.
There are too many customer reviews raving about how bad Archos's customer support is. And I think so too. We are not asking for customer support like Logitech's or Telus's. But it has to be better. I'll describe how good are Logitech and Telus's customer support is.
Logitech does have some wait time, but no more than 15 minutes. And if you have a defective product, they will send you a completely new one free of charge. They don't even ask for the defective ones back. I had a Logitech Z-5500 computer speaker broken once and they just replaced it for me. Just ask for a PID number. No receipt, no shipping back to Logitech. And that speakers MSRP is $500!!!
Telus is a Wireless company. What make them special is that they have an especially short wait time. Usually you are not put on hold. I have never been put on hold for more than a minute!!! The representatives are friendly, intelligent, and they will fix any issue regarding your bill, etc. And they give instant refunds on errors they have on your bill.
Now back to Archos. First, the waiting time is too long. It is around 15 to 90 minute hold. Yes, I have been put on hold for 90 minutes before. Archos must decrease that time to about 15 minutes maximum. There's got to have more people answering the phones. The usual 30 to 45 minute hold is WAY TOO LONG!!! Archos does not know hwo many customers they've lost because of the bad customer support. Also, just grant the wishes of the customers. If they ask for a refund, give it to them. Archos's customer support must do whatever it takes to make their customer happy. Of course, only reasonable requests. Little things like a refund on codec (which I hope will never have to be dealt with in the future because Archos includes them), just do it for the customers. Bottom line, Archos need MUCH MORE people answering the phone, and they must make the customers more happy. Grant all of the reasonable requests the customers have.
Too many customers have complained about the crappy interface of Archos's. In my opinion, the interface could improve significantly. People want a clean, simple, friendly, easy to use interface. And so far, Archos's interface does not really qualify any of those adjectives. Part of the reason iPod's interface is so good is because their interface are clean, simple, friendly, and easy to use. I find Archos's interface too complicated. It's not clean and simple enough. The interface tells too much technical detail about files. Nobody need to know them, even a tech guru like me. I find it really stupid that Archos used half of the screen displaying the details of the file. We don't need to know that. Use that space to display long song names. I would like to see that you can organize videos in folders. I hate going through my videos on my 404, because the screen only fit 3 video files at a time. It's incredibly slow. If I want folders, I have to use the explorer, not very user friendly. When I press the video icon, I want to see that I'm able to sort my videos in folders without going to the explorer. Also, list the video files normally, don't have a little preview icon and the technical detail information, just the file name. Much simpler, much easier to use. I can go on and on, but I'm sure Archos gets my point. Bottom line, consumers want a clean, simple, friendly, and easy to use interface. The complicated interface is just bad.
Archos need to advertise. Without advertising, not many people will know the product. See how much Apple advertise? And see how much they sell? Archos need to advertise in order to let people know about Archos's excellent products.
Of course, all this requires a lot of money. Here's my suggestion. The 5th generation had a 33% price cut compared to the 4th generation. For the 6th generation, I assume Archos will have some price cut. Don't have any price cut. Because Archos does not have the price cut that supposed to have, use that money on the codec, extra customer support representatives, and advertisement. If needed, raise the price a little. Price is not everything. What's the point of cheaply priced products items if nobody knows about them? If people were willing to pay like $229 for a first generation 2GB iPod nano, why won't they spend $350 on a Archos with much better features? Think about how many people bought an iPod, and how expensive they are. I don't want Archos to raise prices on the 6th generation PMPs, but if that's whats necessary, then do it. But I think $300 for a Archos 606 30GB version with all of the codecs, WiFi Opera browser, better customer support, it will be a huge deal. If Archos took my suggestions seriously and did it, the Archos 606 just might be the best and perfect PMP in the market and might be the second product to have a perfect 10 score on Cnet reviews. Archos 605 already got a 8.7, which is an insanely high score, with only the codec plug in as a con, the 606 will give reviewers a hard time picking a con.
The suggestions up there are the most important ones, and the ones I would like Henri Crohas to read and implement them. The suggestions below are not so important, but it doesn't mean that it can be taken lightly. Some of the important ones will be stressed to show it's importance. These suggestions would make the Archos a more perfect PMP, and some are the cons that some reviewers point out and I would like to see it fixed or changed. Importance of 1 is the lowest, 10 is the highest. Anything higher than 6 should be taken seriously and Archos should do what I've said.
1. Battery life (Importance:10)
The battery life could be better on the next generation PMPs. The battery only last about 4 hours, which is not a very high number. I know Archos rated it 5.5 hours for video, but really I estimate 4 hours. I would also like to see the battery life to be longer on the players that have a higher capacity hard drive. Since a bigger hard drive need more room, it means increased thickness. Since the hard drive won't take all of the space, increase the battery life. Apple does that on their 160GB iPod Classic, I hope Archos does that as well and use the space in the player better.
2. Volume (Importance:10)
The volume got to be higher on the PMPs. I know Archos says that it's the law and Archos can't have it louder than that. But the iPod is much louder than the Archos, did the law come after them? No. All the other players are all louder than Archos, did the law go after them, of course not. Increase the volume on the player. A lot of people complains about this, including some reviewers and a lot of customer review. I think the volume have to be higher. I can barely hear dialogue with AC3's high dynamic. But I don't have that problem with any other players I've used. It's a con that must be fixed.
3. AC power adapter (Importance:10)
It takes too long to charge a player like the 605 through USB. Archos should include an AC power adapter in the 6 series players. Or maybe include it in the 4 series as well. But I think it's a must in the 6 series PMP.
4. Read reviews (Importance:10)
Read what reviewers has to say. Especially the cons. That's a very good way to perfect a company's product.
5. Keep them in stock (Importance:10)
Too many people cancel their orders because Archos can't keep them in stock. Get them in stock and Archos will be selling so much more. It also creates bad customer reviews when they're out of stock on amazon.com.
6. Faster start up time (Importance:9) (I think that's fixed in the 5th generation)
The start time takes way too long on my 404. 17 seconds (Yes, I measured it) is way too long.
7. Lighter and smaller player (Importance:9)
Too many people complained about the size and weight. While Archos did a great job losing 100 grams compared to the 604, but I think more can be done.
8. Multitask (Importance:9)
I would like to see the 606 to be able to multitask, like browsing the internet while listening to music and reading pdfs and listening to music at the same time.
9. Better wifi signal (Importance:9)
Many reviewers pointed out that the antenna isn't so sensitive. I'm sure you know what I'm asking to be fixed.
10. WiFi (Importance:8 )
Although I've never used the WiFi on the 605, but many people said it's sluggish. And I think Archos should fix that.
11. Language support (Importance:8 )
I don't know if this problem is in the 5th generation PMPs, but I've notice that when I set my player in English, other language characters will not be displayed. It's an annoying issue.
12. Thinner body for 160GB version 606 (Importance:8 )
While Archos managed to cut 3mm off on the 605 compared to 504, 2cm is still very thick.
13. Lower docking station price(Importance:7)
I think at $100 for a docking station, that's a big rip off. It needs to be lowered to like $75 or even $50, but not $100, because that's overpriced.
14. More codecs (Importance:7)
I know Archos has a lot of codecs on the player already (with the non optional ones on in the 6th gen), but some other codecs like RMVB would be very useful.
15. Stylus holder (Importance:7)
Some reviewers have complain about a lack of a place to put the stylus on the 605. Try to include that.
16. Leatherette case (Importance:7)
A leatherette case would be VERY nice to include. I loved my leatherette case for my 404, I even like it better than the leather case!
17. Backlit buttons (Importance:7)
If the 606 will have buttons, have a backlit button that backlit the buttons. Using it in the dark without backlit is quite annoying.
18. Better audio (Importance:7)
I'm not saying the 605 have bad audio quality, I'm just saying it can be improved. My headphone, the Shure e5c, cannot fully demonstrate their capabilities with a mediocre amp.
19. Better screen (Importance:7)
While Archos did an amazing job upgrading the screen on the 605, but there is always room for improvement. Things like grainy picture that some reviewers pointed out should be fixed.
20. Much faster PDF read time (Importance:7)
I like to read books on my 404 (although not too clearly because of the low resolution), and the read speed is terrible. It's plain text and it takes 10 seconds to load. I can't imagine loading something with pictures. It seems like this problem is not fixed in the 605 so I'll mention it here.
21. All touch screen (Importance:6)
I want to see the 606 to have no buttons, just a screen.
22. Removable battery (Importance:6)
I would like to see the removable battery feature back on the 606 if it's possible
23. Cover USB ports with something. (Importance:6)
Another aesthetic touch. My cellphone has one covering the charging port, I love it, but it's not attached, so easily loss. Attach some rubber material and cover the USB when they're not used.
24. Voice recorder (Importance 6)
I would love to see the voice recorder back on the 606.
25. Stereo speakers (Importance:5)
Some people complained about it, minor issue, something nice to have. Also, don't make the speakers try to produce bass. When it distorts because of the bass note, very annoying.
26. Protective pouch (Importance:5)
If Archos is not going to include a leatherette pouch, at least have a zipper in the cloth pouch. It makes life much better.
27. No visible screws (Importance:5)
Screws ruin the appearance of the PMP. You get the idea.
28. FM radio (Importance:4)
Just include it, something nice to have.
29. Waterproof (Importance:4)
That would be very convenient, since there's nothing worse than spilling water on your 606 and therefore destroying it.
30. Games (Importance:4)
Nice to have some games.
31. GMC decoding (Importance:3)
I know GMC decoding takes a lot of processing power, but heck, so does H.264.
32. Pictbridge support (Importance:3)
Just something nice to have, totally optional.
33. GPS navigator and dictionary (Importance:1)
Like the Cowon Q5, totally optional but cool features.
Thank you for reading this insanely long email. Especially to you Henri to spend time reading my suggestions through your busy schedule. But I think this time will be well spent and I hope Archos does what I've wrote in the really important suggestion section in the beginning. I know not all of the suggestions I've wrote can be done, but I hope most of them are because I think these are excellent suggestions to perfect Archos's product.
By the way, would you give me an E-Mail after reading my suggestions. Tell me that you've read my E-Mail, and possibly telling me that Archos will do what I've suggested. If possible, I hope I can get a personal E-Mail response from Henri Crohas. (In English please, I don't speak French). If that's not possible, tell me that in the E-Mail response that I've requested. Also, tell me if Henri is going to read my response. I really hope he reads my suggestions. Best wishes to Archos.
Last edited by Chengbin on Fri Nov 02, 2007 4:39 am, edited 3 times in total.