"Radio Shack" predicted to disappear in the next year.

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by N7UR, Jul 9, 2010.

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  1. WS2L

    WS2L Guest

    Actually the Injunction protects us more then it hurts us. Prior to the Injunction Radioshack was successful at having our website shut down by a Tarrant County, Texas Judge. Now as long as we follow the Injunction there is nothing they can do to us. Also if you read the terms of the Injunction it is basically inside information that they do not want to see posted on the internet. So we do not allow members to post store numbers or any proprietary information which is not the intent of the website anyway.

    We can communicate as freely as we did prior to the Injunction the only difference now is that we have rules not to post information that any company would not want to see posted on the net.

    Most of our members are current or former employee's who use the site to vent their frustrations with the company. The company started going downhill around the year 2000 when Len Roberts became CEO. The company is only concerned about selling cellphones and they are usually at least one year behind everyone else as far as popular items. They didn't start carrying Ipods until a year or so after they hit the market. The other problem is they keep very little stock of these popular products but for an inflated price they do carry every accessory that you can find.

    They will post in their flyer that they have a certain popular item on Sale but what they fail to do is sufficiently stock their stores with the item that is on sale. They may have 2 or 3 in stock which may include the display model. Once they have you in the store they will try to sell you something else other then what you want. Either that or they can order it for you and have it shipped to your house.

    The company has lost focus and are grabbing at straws.

    To find out the real deal about the company register for the website and hear it from the people who worked in the stores and not the Management that has no clue what goes on in their own stores.

    Register for full access: http://www.radioshacksucks.biz/forums
  2. KA5LQJ

    KA5LQJ Ham Member QRZ Page



    What took so long, LOL! I remember when it only had one store, and it was in Bahhstun.:eek: They were a real small company and were referred to as the Nagasaki Hardware Store, unaffectionately. The sold mostly cheap Jap parts that didn't hold up before you soldered them in place. Then they bought out Allied Radio in Chicago and started handling decent parts.

    The only thing close to being a radio store is the scanners they sell and they are made by other companies under the Radio Shack name. Unless the scanner is 6 months old, you can't even by parts for them. I've got some of their scanners which seem to work ok, but the manual for programming them were written by folks who don't know ship from Shineola, he,he,he. I'm changing over to Bearcat or Uniden, which seems to have the features I require for my listening.

    As for their personnel, they are barely out of high school and know nothing of regular electronics. My 'electronics parts needs' are being met by reputable, mail-order or internet-order companies. I'll just have to be more patient when looking for "N" connectors or good coax and ladder line.


  3. AA1MN

    AA1MN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'd be glad to see Starbucks, the Pentagon, and Congress disappear too. I'm with Grandma of "Mars Attacks" fame who clapped with glee when they killed congress ... you go Grandma, you go.
  4. K1CJS

    K1CJS Ham Member QRZ Page

    One of the most accurate indicators of Radio Shack's demise--one that I don't think anyone has yet mentioned--is that they haven't printed a parts catalog in years. The year after they printed their last catalogue most people knew darn well that Radio Shack--as it had been known--was dead.

    That year, Radio Shack changed from a radio oriented store and parts center to a retailer that lost sight of its roots--and its goal.
  5. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm with ya.....
    Tear it down to the Constitution and bill of rights (forget the rest) and rebuild.
  6. KI4OZG

    KI4OZG Ham Member QRZ Page

    All we need to do is to play a couple of Slim Whitman tunes and there ya' go...

    It's all over them there aliens then!!! ;)

    The "Death of Radio Shack", huh? It's a slow one, no doubt, but it just keeps hanging on.

    I do remember a time when going into a Radio Shack was fun...

    Ah, the good old days of yore, will never be more. :(
  7. KC8RWR

    KC8RWR Ham Member QRZ Page

    No Market? No Purpose? I'm not convinced...

    Ok, I'll agree it is unlikely a business with any overhead would make it selling to people building qrp rigs and ham receivers alone. The wider electronic hobbyist market however is not dead. Just look at the 'Maker Movement'!

    I think Radio Shack has two problems.

    1 - The cellphone/toy focus.

    Yes, those are bigger markets. But they are saturated! Where can you go and not find cellphones and toys being sold these days? Every where you look there is a greater selection of toys and a cellphone kiosk. Not to mention they are tied to Sprint, a cellphone carrier that is also on it's way down the tubes. The majority of RadioShack's sales may now be cellphones and toys but the majority of cellphone and toy sales are not Radio Shack.

    2 - They are too big

    Try as they might they are not going to become big in cellphones/toys. Their competition is doing those things too much better and has been doing so for too long. If they want to survive they need to fall back on their market for which there is little competition. Brick and mortar component/tool sales.

    This is a smaller market. I know of 3 radio shacks near my house and I suspect there are at least twice that many. They need a number of stores which the hobbyist market can support. I live in a decent sized city (Toledo, OH). I think there should be 1 Radio Shack there. In a decent sized city I'm pretty sure there are enough of us hobbyists who will show up because we don't want to wait a week for our part to arrive. In the country, I'm sorry... I grew up in a village myself and know what it's like to be stuck with just mailorder (pre-internet) but I just don't think most smaller population areas can support a niche market like that.

    On the other hand... Radio Shack does have a program where people can set up their own mini dealerships just for areas which do not have a bigger store. I used to know of one inside a sporting goods store! I can definitely see a RS branded display of components within a small town hardware store.

    One of the Radio Shacks near me currently stands out a little from the rest. They have a much wider selection of parts and some I have never seen at other RS stores. They have PIC microcontrolers and various sensors, just the kind of stuff the Maker crowd eats up. I think a successful parts store in the 2010s needs to cater to that group. Fortunately the common parts, resistors, caps and such will still benefit us. Even catering to the Makers doesn't mean more RF useful parts can't be snuck in there too and there is certainly plenty of potential for crossover.

    Is it worth it when we can get parts assortments so cheap off the internet? Absolutely! I'm sorry but waiting is no fun at all. I for one still go to RS and buy components now and then even though I know I could get a bag full off Ebay for the price of their little 2 or 3 component bubble pack.

    It's nice to have somewhere to shop, something to look at too. There just isn't a reasonably local hamfest every day. And if I had to go to the mall with my wife and there was nothing to do but stare at clothing for hours... that would be a stress on our marriage!

    Radio shack could survive...

    They could drop the cellphones. Bring back more of the educational nature their toys once had and increase their components and tool selections, drastically cut the number of same area stores in urban areas and cut their rural ones altogether while pushing their mini-dealerships in the rural areas to replace them.


    The path they are on, push the hot, popular items.. cellphones and consumer electronics. In the short term they will make more money this way but they are a small guy in a big market with too many tempting locations. They will get bought out but the executives and stock holders will get something in that buyout. The hobbyist is the loser.

    No doubt the second path is what is going to happen. There is another way though. They could spinoff the hobbyist portion of the company and create the Maker market catering company I described. It's not quite a ham shop but for those of us that have nothing else local left it would certainly be a better future.

    Oh... one other thing...

    I don't think the internet lessens the usefulness of a local shop even if they can only afford to stock the common parts. I think it makes them more relevant than ever.

    Think about it.. what percentage of hobbyists design their circuits themselves from scratch. Most of us are building someone else's design and perhaps modifying it a bit. In the past that meant schematics from magazines. The authors who wrote those articles weren't getting paid much by the magazine, they were selling the parts. Just about all the interesting ones contained one or more rare parts the author just happened to have extras of and was willing to sell.

    Now with the internet people just post the stuff they build because it's cheap and easy to do so. It's fun to share and show off. We have an endless supply of circuits where the authors are specifically trying to cater to what is commonly available in an area. Just look at the original BittX for one example! This should be the best time ever for a hobbyist electronics shop. We just need a store with management that doesn't lose their heads thinking they are going to become the next AT&T or Verizon!
  8. KA5S

    KA5S Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The dearth of electronics knowledge isn't CAUSED by RS. Not long ago i was tallking with an intern (sophmore next eyar) on BSEE track who asked me what was in a low-pass filter. He didn't know what an inductor does because they have not yet covered discrete reactances. DSP, yes... coils and capacitors, no. Thought 3dBm was 1000 milliwatts... And him going to an Ivy League school (hint: Einstein worked there.)

    How are the mighty fallen...

  9. KC9BNW

    KC9BNW Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Greetings KA5S,

    I thought that Einstein was employed by the IAS (Institute for Advanced Study), and not Princeton. Although, there was (and still is) quite a bit of crossover - people from one place attending lectures, tea, and so forth from the other.

  10. K7ZZY

    K7ZZY Ham Member QRZ Page

    The bottom line...

    They might be too big to fail.
    Far too important to hobbyists around the country.

    Get those printing presses rolling, boys.
    It's time for a bailout from deep-pocketed Uncle Sam.
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