With cramped cabins, long delays and ever-increasing fees, these days airplane travel is about as exciting as a cross-country bus trip. In the mid-1970s, however, the skies briefly brightened with the arrival of the revolutionary Concorde supersonic jet. Capable of cruising at more than twice the speed of sound, Concorde could fly from London to New York in half the time of normal planes. For optimistic aviation observers, the jet represented no less than the future of air travel.
But a number of issues kept Concorde from soaring to the heights that many expected. Along with high costs and environmental concerns, a crash in 2000 followed by the post-9/11 drop in air travel led Airbus to discontinue the jet in 2003. This lengthy video from Vox details Concorde’s origin and end, providing a great example of how a product can still fail despite its technological advancement.
- Do you think Concorde could make a comeback today? Who would be its target market?
- Why do some technologically advanced goods or services fail to catch on with the public?