Welcome to Consumer

Are you a busy professional with no time on your hands? Do you need to make frequent purchase decisions for your everyday life? Do you always look for the right gear? Do you try to use the best utilities and webapps for your computer? Do you always try to keep informed about what is important in your life, and gather the full info about what to do, with - typically - no time to do so?

At Consumer, we are OBSESSIVE about research. We are COMPULSIVE about research. We research everything we report on, as if it were our first-born child's first car seat. We keep on searching, until we have exhausted every single avenue. If we pick a product, it is because it is the BEST.

We love Consumer Reports - when they report on reliability, quality, and consumer issues. But their product guides do not use category experts to structure information, and their selections ignore user feedback on these products - even their own users. We also like Which? and Choice - they suffer from the same problems.

We like Consumer Search. They do a good job at researching magazine and large site reviews, and they take into account the feedback from the consumer magazines. But - they also ignore, discount or do not target user feedback, and, as a result, many of their picks are sub-optimal. Ultimately, the most valuable reviews - the only true reviews-  are those from the product owners and users themselves.

Have you wondered why the CNET editors' product review scores disagree with those of their users? Which one do you trust most? "Experts" spend a couple of days investigating a few devices and publish their reviews. Users live with these products for months or years - they are the TRUE product experts.

User reviews can also suffer from deficiencies, as we all see when reading customer comments on Amazon... Positive reviews often come early in the life cycle of ownership. Negative reviews sometimes are due to lack of understanding, which, in turn, might be a consequence of lack of usability - or not. In many cases, the best analysis results from long, multi-paged discussion threads, on user forums. User reviews and comments are the best source of input. They need to be evaluated one at a time: an average rating does not even come close to capturing reality. The right research must specifically find and evaluate large volumes of user reviews.

We use and trust the input from consumer magazines and sites, and we take advantage of expert reviews. But - we specifically target user input everywhere on the web. We are experts are finding, reviewing and evaluating user input. If the web only provides partial answers, we go hands-on to resolve questions. We combine it all to give you the most thorough reviews on the web.