I hate to sound like I’m incessantly ripping on The Verge — though, admittedly, I am — but Ben Brooks nails this.
I like The Verge, but I realize that I mainly like it because it’s Engadget with better visuals. It’s not really anything new (though they’re getting into user reviews — good luck with that. I have a feeling that the vast majority will be complete crap and useless — maybe the aggregate score will be interesting, or maybe it will be fanboy gamed).
They’re very, very competent at what they do, but they’re missing a voice. They’re missing some kickass attitude that would put them over the edge and force me to read.
Maybe they don’t want that, but I do.
Brooks’ takedowns of the two reviews hit cites are also dead-on. The Sphero is apparently good, okay, shitty. And the Galaxy Nexus 4G is awesome — except for the 4G part which makes it almost unusable. You know, the key feature of the device. Still, 8.7! Would it be a 13/10 if the 4G was rock solid?
I’ve always hated the majority of rating systems in general. I hate 1 to 5 stars because while 1, 3, and 5 make sense (bad, okay, and good), what constitutes 2 and 4 stars? The Verge takes it a step farther with 1 to 10 — complete with decimal points! 8.7… what the fuck does that mean?
And what will it mean in 6 months when there’s inevitably a better Android phone on the market? Will they change the review then? Or will the better one be an 8.8? If so, what happens in 20 years? Will the best Android phone be a 132 out of 10?
Personally, I’d give the Galaxy Nexus a 7.13482, but that’s just me.
Okay, now I’m just being an asshole. But it just seems to me that they’re whole review mentality flies in the face of some silly objectivity they’re trying to convey. 8.7 ratings are clearly not obtained by the scientific method — they’re based largely on subjective viewpoints.
All I have to say is thank god for Brian Lam’s The Wirecutter. Best laptop ever created? The 13-inch MacBook Air.
Damn fucking straight.