Products designed to be remanufactured also help increase product life. Modular structures can help make repair and replacement easy and effective. Products that fit a range of uses (like the iconic Swiss Army Knife) can sometimes outlast those with specialized uses (or misuses).
More than anything else, however, products that are meaningful (that resonate with our values, emotions, and meanings) are often the most satisfying and durable of all. To whatever extent you can develop products and services that connect deeply with customers, the likelihood that your customers will keep these products longer increases dramatically.
The Dyson Vacuum Cleaner
When James Dyson became so frustrated with the conventional vacuum he owned and decided to design something better, it was hardly his first invention. In the late 1970s, the industrial designer decided that a different process altogether could both cut down the
The Dyson Vacuum Cleaner (continued)
number of moving parts, provide continuous and better suction, and not lose that suction at all as it picked up dirt like traditional vacuums did. His dual cyclone vacuum used the principle of cyclonic separation to suck up dirt and drop it into a clear bin (so you could see it) without clogging the motor or requiring a bag (see Figure ia^.
By eliminating the bag, the vacuum cleaner eliminates a lot of material and impact in the use phase. In addition, the vacuum can save energy since its suction isn’t diminished during use. Lastly, the reason why this is an example of durability is that the vacuum itself performs better for longer since it doesn’t rely on costly bag replacements that might, someday, cease to be produced.
FIGURE 10.4. http://www. flickr. com/photos/ rosenfeldmedia/3265640702
The Dyson vacuum cleaners use strategic design to create more durable and effective solutions.