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Dear Shearwater; about your timing . . .

Discussion in 'Shearwater Research' started by Jax, Dec 27, 2015.

  1. Jax

    Jax Deplorable American ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: AZ TX
    Doooods, seriously . . . the timing of the Perdix sucks. :(

    Never, ever, ever release something just before, or in the three months after Christmas.

    Imagine this -- across the world ecstatic divers open their Christmas presents to find the Petrel 2 from their beloved . . .

    A day later, dancing and bragging and screaming their new toy to the Interwebs, and they read . . . new dive computer... brighter, smaller, everything like the Petrel . . .

    Their breath stops, their heart jumps into their throat, feeling like it is being squeezed by a huge unseen fist. . . . Perdix . . . Perdix.

    But they mustn't say anything, they must continue to fake that smile for their beloved . . . and won't probably be able to afford the new one for more than a year. . . cannot justify another for more than a year. . .

    rhwestfall and lowviz like this.
  2. Johanan

    Johanan ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Riga, Latvia
    Did it happen to you? My sincere commiseration! Something like that happened to me when I bought Sony RX 100 a month before the new model was released.
    Jax likes this.
  3. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC PADI Pro

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: United States
    Hah! I'm still buying Predators. The only bummer about them is that you still have to buy upgrade codes for CCR diving.

    Hint hint Shearwater, free upgrades for Predators would be a great belated Christmas present :wink:
    Lorenzoid and letterboy like this.
  4. Stoo

    Stoo NAUI Instructor

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Freelton & Tobermory, Ontario, Canada
    For those of you unhappy with your new Petral II, I would be happy to take it off your hands. I'll even pay for the shipping. :D

    (I agree though... weird timing.... My LDS promoted this on their FB page starting on Christmas Day. The new one isn't on Shearwater's website yet as far as I can tell... Maybe the PLAN was to release in advance of Christmas, but it was delayed in production?)
  5. scubadada

    scubadada Diver Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Philadelphia and Boynton Beach
    From the same person who wrote this?

    Aww, no worries - it is just a little smaller but the same great Shearwater. :hugs:
    StefinSB and Jax like this.
  6. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC PADI Pro

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: United States
    My money is still on Shearwater finding a less expensive way to produce the computer and thus use the added profit margin to grow their business.

    Machining dive computer bodies is fairly expensive. The cost of an injection mold is initially high, but I'm willing to bet the cost is quite easily amortized in volume sales, whereas the machining cost for individual computers never goes down. You're still paying for machine time, operator, tool use, raw material stock, etc. Since probably the most significant change is that the Perdix is incapable of being used as an external PO2 monitor, this leads me to believe that the EXT models size requirements were the deciding factor for the Petrels form factor. In order to streamline the manufacture of the machined computers, the size was determined based on that factor, and the standalone models were simply bigger than they needed to be for the included hardware.

    Considering that EXT models of computers are probably a much smaller percentage of their total dive computer sales, it makes absolute sense to remove that as a design requirement, and that opens up the ability to make a more streamlined computer, with more economical methods. If you sell 50 standalone units for every EXT model, it makes much more sense to make a much smaller number of the higher cost to manufacture units, and pump out a ton of the less expensive computer using whatever means maximizes your profit margin. And since you're not getting any less computer than the previous model, keeping a similar pricing structure doesn't devalue any of the computers in the lineup, but allows for a larger margin, allowing the business to grow. The more Shearwaters business grows, the more development is done, the more features come to market, etc.

    I don't begrudge Shearwater at all for coming out with a new computer. I think from a business standpoint, it's a decision that is a long time in coming. I own 2 Predators, one EXT that attaches to my rebreather and I use as my primary when diving OC. I have a standalone that I use for backup diving OC. Honestly, the only reason I keep them is because I like the OLED screen in the overhead. When they finally kick off, I'll either replace with a Petrel EXT or a Perdix (not a Petrel SA) depending on which one bites the dust first. If you figure that even the guys buying EXT's will have an SA as a backup, you're economics of scale still GREATLY favors building a computer specifically for the OC market, knowing that rebreather divers will still be buying them too. Keeping a small line available for EXT models doesn't abandon the customers that still require them (rebreather manufactures and divers), but frees up a lot of resources to concentrate on your real money makers.

    Of course I could be completely wrong and they want a quick way to bang out computers for the masses while they dedicate all of their major production time for rebreather controllers. I doubt that's the case though.
  7. DA Aquamaster

    DA Aquamaster Directional Toast ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: NC
    I agree the timing was poor. Jax is right on the money in terms of how that looks/feels to customers who just bought/got one for Christmas.

    Worse, I get the impression that while some demo units have been sent to shops, those shops are just taking pre-orders for them, so the actual computers could still be one to even several months away.

    I suspect the plan was for shops to try them, get familiar with them, and perhaps even provide feedback on them, a few months before the actual release date. But perhaps some of those shops jumped the gun.


    The Perdix seems to be better suited to capture the market for recreational divers who want to buy one nice computer that they won't out grow. However, it will increase the divide between the SA and EXT computers. Even though Shearwater may have sold 50 SA Predators or Petrels for every EXT Predator or Petrel, the commonality between them was very high, keeping costs lower for the EXT units. You have to wonder now if the cost for EXT Petrel will rise as the Perdix starts to supplant the stand alone Petel computer.

    I'm getting a Petel EXT this week to go with a rebreather, so the Perdix is no big deal for me personally. My big regret though is not getting an EXT version of the Predator when it was still available, as I love the screen on the Predator.
  8. JohnnyC

    JohnnyC PADI Pro

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: United States
    I think it's just the opposite. The cost of the EXT's is what kept the cost of the SA's high. You keep the same form factor because the EXT requires it, so the SA's have it also to keep the products streamlined. So your whole production is dedicated to a labor intensive manufacturing process because of the requirements of the EXT's. Now, the amount of computers requiring that intensive manufacturing process will decrease, limited to EXT's and a much smaller number of SA's.

    Think about it this way, you have to build a box. You have two types of things you put in that box, one large, and one small. By making a box that fits the large thing, you can also fit the small thing. The big box isn't cheap, but it's much cheaper than making two different sizes of boxes. The biggest issue is that you sell 1/4 of the large thing, but in order to make things easier, you still use the big box for everything since it's cheaper. Now let's say you've figured out a way to make the small box much cheaper. Now you can make a few big boxes, just enough to fit the big things you make, and you can also make a small box to fit the small things, the ones you sell more of, because it no longer costs as much to make two separate box sizes. Big things go in big boxes, and small things go in small boxes.

    As for timing, people will always be upset, and things will always come out at the wrong time. I'm surprised that people even complain about that stuff anymore given most peoples familiarity with it regarding technology purchases.
  9. FiddlerOnTheRoof

    FiddlerOnTheRoof Contributor

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Connecticut
    Petrel 2 is a much better computer!
    geoff w likes this.
  10. Jim Lapenta

    Jim Lapenta Dive Shop

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Canonsburg, Pa
    Perdix units are shipping to dealers starting the end of this week. Been talking to them as recently as this weekend.

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