Service of the Superfluous in Tech that Causes Confusion: YouTube to the Rescue

May 22nd, 2023

Categories: Phones, Technology, Travel

I have no confidence when I’m confronted by technology and I blame myself if I don’t catch on to something or if something goes wrong. When there’s a glitch with my new printer or laptop first I panic and next I rush to YouTube which usually provides a visual step-by-step rescue.

I bought an Apple World Travel Adapter Kit for my iPhone and iPad charger and was confused which was which because three of the elements looked the same. As much as I stared at the sketches on the box and the actual widgets, I couldn’t tell the difference between the electric plugs for Korea, Brazil or Europe.

I went to the Apple store in Grand Central with the box and a man on the welcome team handed me one of the connectors, but I wasn’t convinced.

Next, I found a wonderful video on YouTube—there are a bunch on the subject–in which the tech guru opened his box and went through the various elements. Towards the end he remarked that he couldn’t tell the difference between the three adaptors and I cheered!

I admit my eyes aren’t what they once were but even with a magnifying glass I had a difficult time reading the gray-on-gray EUR on one of the identical looking adapters. YouTube man pointed out where to look. Obviously the 20-something at Apple didn’t know where to look either. He had handed me the device for Korea.

I went to the Apple store for something else this weekend and while I was waiting for the product to arrive I mentioned this to the bright [very] young associate helping me. He said that the devices would be different even though they might look the same because they also address voltage in each country. He suggested I ID each country’s device with magic marker. I don’t expect to go to Brazil or Korea so…..

The voltage info also didn’t get out to the associate who handed me the adaptor for Korea. Lucky for me I know where to look to ID the correct device thanks to the fellow on YouTube. Maybe “Let me find out,” wasn’t part of the training language taught the first assistant either.

Have you been tripped up by a tech company when it turned out that it is they—not you—at fault?   


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4 Responses to “Service of the Superfluous in Tech that Causes Confusion: YouTube to the Rescue”

  1. Lucrezia Said:

    Not yet. but I specialize in not budging and annoying people until satisfied with an answer to questions. I also like to fool around and things often fall into place, thus voiding a need for assistance.

  2. Jeanne Byington Said:


    As beautifully designed as Apple products are —as well as the packaging— I suspect the hidden gray on gray ID would have fooled even you. I appreciate YouTube videos so I often don’t have to bother friends and acquaintances. It has taken me quite a while to realize that I save hours of time by bringing in my IT guru if my usual paths to solutions don’t succeed. Worth every penny. I also recognize that I am not clever when it comes to technology.

  3. Martha T Takayama Said:

    I am so confused by any little glitch or sany instructions that are web or digital that I am constantly confused and generally need outside help. I still only absorb guidance in this area with GREAT difficulty!

  4. Jeanne Byington Said:


    I too often find solutions are unnecessarily convoluted requiring wasted steps that do nothing to enhance the goal. KISS has gone out the window.

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