Apple’s brand image has been taking hits left and right over the past six months. I’m not an Apple hater, in fact, I’ve been somewhat of a super fan for many years now. I have the iPhone X, iPad Pro 10.5”, and a MacBook Pro. I use the Apple Pencil and the AirPods. I’ve spent an enormous amount of money on Apple gear, and I love it all so much. Apple’s stuff doesn’t come cheap, but to me, the experience I get is worth it. And I preach that to my friends and family (as best as I can without being obnoxious). But that’s gotten difficult as of late. Here are three things that have made Apple look really bad recently…
iPhone X Price Point
I love my iPhone X. The screen is beautiful, the cameras are amazing, and FaceID is straight magic. It’s the best phone I’ve ever owned.
But it seems like every time I pull it out, someone goes, “Didn’t that thing cost you a thousand dollars??!” Yeah, actually, it did. And I happily paid that. I couldn’t wait for preorders to open. I was so excited.
The iPhone X is an iPhone for fanboys and fangirls like me. If you don’t want to spend $1000, get the iPhone 8. It’s a great phone. Compared to any older iPhone, it’s faster, got a better camera, supports wireless charging, and is priced normally for an iPhone.
But to a lot of people, just the fact that Apple sells a phone that costs more than the entire Cracker Barrel menu makes them seem… out of touch. Bourgeoisie even. Apple has always been about premium. But they’re walking a fine line right now.
Or maybe they’re not. Everyone I know with an iPhone X loves it. If we’re all such suckers, heck, they should charge whatever we’ll pay.
iOS 11 has been kinda rough. It seems to have gotten better recently, but late last year I was just having all kinds of random little bugs. I think I rebooted my iPhone more last November/December than any other month I’ve had an iPhone. These were all little things, all fixed by reboots. But that’s not like Apple.
And then there was been the ‘A [?]’ bug, where all capital letter ‘I’s were replaced with the letter A and a question mark in a box. There was also the root user security hole on the Mac.
What kills me here is that Apple’s hardware game over the last 18 months has been spot on. The new iPad Pro, iPhone X, and AirPods are all amazing, beautiful devices. But the software game just isn’t there right now. Here’s hoping Apple gets that together in 2018.
Slow Down Gate/Battery Gate
Whatever you wanna call this one, this is easily the worst thing that’s happened to Apple PR in the last few years. Before my opinions, let me first state the facts:
- Apple admitted that they slow down older iPhones.
Wait WHAT? See that’s what you’re all thinking. “I knew it!” you say. “They ARE evil!” But wait, here’s the rest of the story:
- As batteries get older (all batteries, not just iPhone batteries), their power output starts to get a little unstable.
- During times of peak performance need (say, playing a 3D game), the iPhone is drawing a lot of power from the battery.
- If the battery power output all of a sudden dips during one of these times, the iPhone could simply shut off, because it wasn’t expecting the power to cut out.
- To fix this problem, Apple has programmed the iPhone to, well, expect this power dip. During periods of peak performance, older iPhones may intentionally slow down the processor if it believes the battery is likely to be unreliable.
The point is, Apple is trying to prevent your iPhone from just randomly shutting off right when you’re using it the heaviest. But that’s not really the point. The real point is, The conspiracy theorists were right. I’ve spent years assuring people that no, Apple doesn’t slow down your iPhone just to make you buy a new one. Even though Apple wasn’t technically doing this “to make you buy a new one,” the public perception damage has been done. Apple has done several things to address this problem, including offering battery replacements at over 60% off through all of 2018. They are also updating iOS soon to allow users to turn off this behavior in their iPhone settings. But still. Apple has a lot of ground to make up in 2018.