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Think twice before you buy bespoke appliances (or anything really)

Samsung rolled out its latest bespoke appliances this week. First, we got bespoke refrigerators. Then Samsung announced bespoke laundry appliances are coming soon as well. These bespoke appliances allow you to match your decor in a way not possible before. You can get a bespoke refrigerator to match your kitchen decor, and a bespoke washer and dryer combination to match your laundry room decor. If you live in New York City, you can get all three appliances to match since they’ll all be within six feet of each other.

There’s one problem with bespoke products, regardless of their size: Resale value.

All this sounds like a great idea because it allows you to really personalize your technology and your decor at the same time. The same could be said for the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 Bespoke edition. For an extra Benjamin, you can swap out the back panels for up to 49 different combinations of colors to match your personal style. This is great, but there’s one problem with bespoke products, regardless of their size: Resale value.

Yours and yours alone

Looking at the phone first, unless you plan to drive this phone into the ground, adding your own personal style to your phone is only going to decrease the value if and when you try to sell it. The problem with your personal style is it’s your personal style. Someone else looking to buy your phone may not agree with your aesthetic. So if you were planning on selling your foldable down the line, you should think twice.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 Bespoke Edition
Samsung / Samsung

In the world of phones, it’s not crazy to think you’ll use the phone for its entire life. Smartphones last for two to three years before they need to be replaced. Add in the fact that foldable longevity is at the very least more questionable than that or a glass slab, and maybe bespoking your flip phone isn’t that bad an idea. But what about electronics that are meant to last longer?

Going bigger

This brings us to the refrigerator, washer, and dryer. Presumably, Samsung will figure out how to bespoke even more appliances around your home in the future. Want a smart, bespoke water heater? Samsung might do that. But getting back to the products you can bespoke today, refrigerators, washers, and dryers are all projected to last up to a dozen years or more.

There are a lot of pitfalls that come with adding a bespoke appliance to your home.

A lot can happen in 12 years. Your personal style may change. You may decide to remodel your home. You may decide to sell your home, and typically you won’t take your appliances with you. There are a lot of pitfalls that come with adding a bespoke appliance to your home.

It’s also important to consider how your decor will match with your refrigerator and whether it’ll still match in 12 years. Will bespoke options still be out there? Imagine getting a bespoke fridge and changing up your home decor to match it, only to find out that those color combinations aren’t available in 2034.

Winner: Samsung

The advantage to Samsung is clear. It can add to the price of its products for very little investment. A warehouse full of covers for a refrigerator, or a phone, doesn’t cost that much. If the product is designed correctly, the manpower needed for assembly isn’t all that great either. Meanwhile, you’ll be paying a premium for an already premium item. I’m not sure the math works out here.

I’m not saying that bespoke appliances (or smartphones) are a problem. If you’re well-established in your home (or with your phone as the case may be), then by all means, bespoke until you’re all bespoked out. Just remember that those choices may have long-term consequences, so make sure you know what you’re getting into.

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Adam Doud
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Adam had been writing in the tech space for nearly a decade. When not hosting the Benefit of the Doud podcast, he can be…
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