I’m passionate about technology, and as a result, I’m very picky about the technology that I use (and recommend). While some manufacturers promise lower prices for comparable products, the TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) is often times equal to, or more than, the price of the “more expensive” product. For example, I recommend the Apple Airport Extreme base station as a great home wireless router. Retail cost is $180. Sure, you can pick up a D-Link or Linksys wireless router for $80, but believe me... you’ll be skimping on features and quality.
Brand recognition is important to me, because it conveys a brand’s worthiness to be used. As technology changes, however, the products I use and recommend also change. It’s the nature of the business. For example, I used to promote Linksys quite heavily... until Cisco bought them several years ago. It’s not that I dislike Cisco (quite the contrary, as you will see below), it’s just that I don’t believe that the Linksys brand is a top priority for Cisco. As a result, the Linksys brand suffers from quality issues.
One more thing to keep in mind with branding. Just because I recommend a brand for one type of product doesn’t mean I would necessarily recommend that brand for another type of product. For example, I LOVE HP printers, but wouldn’t recommend an HP computer. Just something to keep in mind.
I thought I would look around my home office and show you some of the brands that I rely very heavily on, and recommend (hardware, software and services). See below: