Is this the beginning of the end for Apple? The tech giant’s inexorable growth has been a given for most of the 21st century, but, on Wednesday, Apple reported its first decline in quarterly sales for 13 years: a 13% fall, down to $50bn (£34bn). That’s still enough to reduce the UK’s budget deficit by half, but, in Apple’s reckoning, it’s a catastrophe. Apple’s share price fell by 8% yesterday, wiping more than $40bn off its value in a few hours. Is the world falling out of love with the Croesus of Cupertino? Even Siri sounded like an exhausted spin doctor when we asked it for answers.
Siri, is this the beginning of the end for Apple?
- “Interesting question.”
- Siri, what’s wrong with Apple?
- “I can’t say.”
- Do you actually like Apple?
- “Well, perhaps I’m biased, but I prefer all things Apple.”
- “I don’t know. Frankly, I’ve wondered that myself.”
- What are the most common complaints about Apple?
“Let me check on that …”
Actually, save your circuits, Siri. We can tell you exactly why the world is falling out of love with Apple. We’ve been storing up these complaints for years. So, why don’t you just shut your British/American/Australian, male/female speech unit and listen?
1 The passwords
Signing into the iTunes store: Apple ID? Password? User password? Password for this Mac? System admin password? Password for password manager? Forgot? Given up? Gone to get a sledgehammer?
2 The product launches
Ramping up every product launch into a TED talk by Cirque du Soleil based on the Sermon on the Mount, even if it’s just plugging a marginally different phone.
- The new iPhone: “It’s bigger!”
- The new iPhone: “It’s smaller!”
- The new iPhone: “It’s just the right size!”
- The new iPhone: “It’s the size of an ironing board, but so what? Buy it! It’s new!”
3 The endless hardware upgrades
Thanks to those product launches, we now have cupboards full of obsolete iPhones, iPods, iPads, MacBooks, chargers, and cables, plus 30 pairs of white headphones because we always feel like we’re missing out on something HUGE.
4 The Green Eggs and Ham approach to software updates
Install now? Turn on automatic software updates? Remind me later? Try in an hour? Try tonight? Would you update them in a box? Would you update them with a fox? You do not like software updates, so you say? Try them, try them, and you may!
[insert obligatory on The Edge joke]
5 The U2 album
The only music Apple ever gave away for free was the album absolutely nobody wanted or asked for.