I have bought an umbrella for $40. I know that people in Egypt live on $2 a day, but I still decided to invest $40 in upscale umbrella with life time guarantee. Since Israel has no rain(unless I neglect to wear a coat in the morning) I usually buy cheap,disposable $5 umbrellas in New-York or London.
But in October I was coming out of my NY hotel, standing next to the UN building. It took no more than 15 seconds and a horrible storm carried my cheap umbrella, snapped it into pieces and almost killed the police officer who was directing the traffic. Another 60 seconds passed and the same fate found my wife’s $6 umbrella.
Frustrated by years of cheap umbrellas I stepped into the closest souvenir shop and demanded the best umbrella they sell.
The Israeli (Iranian?) clerk was happy to show me the state-of-the-art , top of the line, umbrella. For $40 we would get worldwide, life time guarantee, superb rain protection product. We also bought a $30 Samsonite umbrella, which was supposed to be almost as good.
One a similar note, after three years of frustration with cheap Uniden DECT phones , I returned to the good old Panasonic and bought two new wireless phones for $120. The screen is large, the user interface is as simple as in cellular phones and the sounds quality is great.
The lesson for product managers: there is value in quality and there is a room for new products if the feature set is right.