Beware Bait & Switch


Over the weekend, I ordered an Apple Airport Extreme wireless router from The price was great, and their site stated they had 90 in stock. This afternoon, I received from them via e-mail one of the oldest sales tricks there is–the bait and switch.

With the bait and switch technique, the victim is lured by a low price on a desirable product (the bait). The vendor of the low-priced product claims to be out of the bait, offering a different product at a higher price (the switch). N1Wireless suggested that instead of what I had ordered, I spend $50 more on an Apple Time Capsule product.

I applaud for their bold ethical choices, but respectfully decline the opportunity to spend more money on a product I don’t want.

The lesson is not a new one. If something is too good to be true, then it probably is. Really, I should know better. I had a similar experience with a different vendor several months back selling a TV at a surprisingly low price. After two weeks of waiting for the order to ship, I had to call support to find out that the TV was on backorder, but perhaps I was interested in something else?


By Ethan Banks

Ethan Banks is a podcaster and writer with a BSCS and 20+ years in enterprise IT. He's operated data centers with a special focus on infrastructure — especially networking. He's been a CNE, MCSE, CEH, CCNA, CCNP, CCSP, and CCIE R&S #20655. He's the co-founder of Packet Pushers Interactive, LLC where he creates content for humans in the hot aisle.