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Top ten product launches

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Tickle Me Elmo: The original toy, based on a Sesame Street character, prompted queues out the doors of toy shops in 1996.

New Coke: A slightly sweeter version of the original, this “new” take on an old favourite became one of the most notorious marketing and PR flops ever.

MINI Cooper: Not to be confused with the original “Mini”, the new version launched in 2001 revived the iconic British vehicle, with cameos in a number of films and TV shows, revitalising the trend for premium small cars.

Playstation2 (PS2): Early manufacturing hiccoughs meant limited supply of the games console – which only encouraged queues round the block at its launch. Still among the biggest selling games consoles of all time.

Millennium Dome: Love it or hate it, everyone remembers the launch, with Tony and Cherie Blair crossing arms with the Queen, holding hands and welcoming in the new millennium while looking utterly bewildered.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets: The first Harry Potter book set the ball rolling, but it wasn’t until the sequel that children (and parents) were camping outside book shops for special “midnight” openings.

Halo 3: The latest installment of the Halo XBox game series, it was launched at the IMAX cinema in London and is already set to earn more than many Hollywood blockbusters.

Segway PT: A two-wheel “personal transporter” that generated enormous buzz prior to its unveiling in 2001. Despite two recalls and many cities restricting its use, sales continue to grow (slowly).

Madonna’s Sex book: The title sold it before it even hit the shelves – the coffee table book that no-one would ever have on their coffee table was all about the controversy.

Source: IBM publication: Now we are 100 in association with the CBI.Photography: Jurvetson

Which other product launches got your pulses racing? Post your comments here.

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