We want your opinions on what makes a good review
Reviews are always important, helping customers make informed decisions and letting those be aware of how well a product is being or possibly going to be received. In the fast-paced technology industry and especially in the mobile sector, getting information into the public domain first is crucial. Also with the media used to present information changing; reviewer techniques, personality and hands-on information can be delivered in a variety of methods.
Personally I am a fan of text heavy, exhaustive reviews with each facet of the device scrutinised. This probably stems from being a big videogame fan growing up and as a teenager only having printed magazines to provide information to influence my decisions. Now it seems my preference is one that is being swept aside for more ‘bitty’ reviews that provide necessary technical specifications, but little in the way of exposition regarding the reviewer’s personal experience with the device. A quick search on a device name and the word review will likely pull up a fair amount of short, hastily written pieces by someone with little experience of the device and seemingly there simply to draw some web traffic rather than truly inform the reader. This of course isn’t to say that there aren’t some sites publishing quality reviews that suit my taste, just that personally I find many lacking.
Video reviewing has changed the scene, engaging the viewer with the product instantly and able to show the device in action in a way that words alone never could. Video reviews can also lead to a reduction (or complete removal) of text and can be more personally revealing. Hearing a sigh of frustration when something goes wrong (again!) can far more delicately convey just how annoying a scenario is than any number of printed words trying to explain it.
It is perhaps inevitable that in the Internet environment, saturated with multimedia and with a prevalent culture of instantaneous gratification, we are finding more short-form information dumps. This isn’t necessarily a Bad Thing™; learning to provide concise overviews is an important and necessary skill, however we should be able to differentiate between this and the type of ‘nothing’ writing that adds little to a discussion or fails to inform the reader.
Clove provide short reviews, unboxings and links to others’ work so we would like to know what our regular readers like to see and if you want more (or less) from us. Are you fans of videos, or large image galleries? Do you think certain topics get discussed too much or not enough? Does a wall of text leave you cold or a funny introduction draw you in to read it all? Let us know!