The Apple Hype Machine!

10 Sep
Apple Hype

Apple Hype

Well, in case you missed it, Apple announced a new model of the iPhone today. There will be a cheap version and a not so cheap version. One will be made of plastic and the other will be made of gold, if you so desire. But what struck me about today’s announcement is the inordinate amount of hype that went into it. A co-worker who is ordinarily far from a techie was breathlessly reading out updates as they came in on Twitter. Apple is one of those few brands that inspires such devotion among its customers. I know that I have single-handedly helped keep them in business with my MacBook, iPad 2 and iPhone 4S, and my loyalty comes from knowing the pain and heartache of having dealt with a PC, and all of its attendant security updates and viruses. Apple is smooth, it’s simple, it’s pretty, and always has been. But will it continue to be in the future?

I worry that without the visionary leadership of Steve Jobs, Apple is sacrificing innovation for incremental boosts in stock prices and nearly non-existent improvements in product. The iPhone 4S has a killer app: Siri, voice activated help for virtually any situation. No one else has a Siri-like app on the market. But ever since Siri, we’ve gotten the iPhone 5, which offers nothing more than a thinner model and a longer screen, and the new 5C and 5S, which offer affordability and increased battery power. Nevertheless, if reports of fingerprint recognition are to be believed, Apple has made a huge step forward in security (keep your hands off my phone, iPhone thieves!). But there are no great leaps forward, no vision. I wonder if Apple is keeping up with the rumors of Amazon, the ultimate disrupter, producing a contract-free phone, and if so, if they are ready to not just make modest adjustments year in and year out, but to lead the pack as before. In any case, they’ll always have the fanboys and the hype machine at their disposal.

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