Big Little Lies in Cupertino

Brandon Na
4 min readJun 23, 2018

Are you an Apple loyalist?

Years ago, my sister-in-law preached that only Apple produces the best: computers, laptops and iPods (at that time). Her mother influenced her. Her whole family lived and breathed “Apple.”

My friend Travis, who I highly respect, is an Apple die hard. He recently showed me how amazing the OLED technology in the iPhone is markedly superior and their version of a voice activated device would blow me away compared to Amazon’s and Google’s.

Regardless of their opinions, I decided to give the iPhone a try (a handful of years ago) after the android devices built by HTC were slower than molasses. Initially, I found the phones to be better. I then upgraded to the 5, the 6, and then the 6+. I bought my sons the 7s and eventually each of them the X. For just the phones, I spent probably over $10,000+ USD of my hard earned income to make sure we had solid technology and (ideally) great support.

However, one other thing we bought (and most of the world thought they were buying) was a promise from the biggest technology company in the world (in terms of market value): integrity. Steve Jobs constantly pushed his company to make the products the best in the world. Today, the company sits atop silicon valley having sold a huge population.

Yet again, they admit they lied.

Apple has officially acknowledged that there are problems with its “butterfly” mechanism built into the keyboards of the recent MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops. The company is now offering an extended keyboard service program for computers affected by the issue, via iMore.

A little over 6 months before that, Tim Cook admitted they were slowing down the older versions of their iPhone. Initially, they charged $79 for the battery to be replaced and then later charged $29 for the same service. They dropped the price because they knew that they should be charging a lot less. They even offered the previous customers a rebate of $50 for paying too much. However, why are loyal customers paying anything at all? When’s the last time you PAID for a recall’s mistakes?

If another company would have admitted they purposely designed their products so that people would constantly upgrade their phones (or “buy into” the iUpgrade program), they would have been embarrassed, taken a huge dip in their company’s valuation or even closed down. Many companies historically have taken huge hits to their bottom line to make up for past predatory or unethical behavior, but Apple continues to sell their products in their completely packed Apple stores. Have you been to one lately?

Today, I was flying down to the bay area (coincidentally) and at my airport, I tried to recharge my son’s iPhone. When I pulled out my cable, I stuck the Lightning cable into the socket in the wall and as I’ve been getting used to, it fails to work. Yah, the lightning cable basically requires the power head. I just talked to my friends and they thought it was just them. No, it’s all of us.

However, Apple’s power cables have CONSTANTLY failed many of us over the years and we’ve gotten used to it. So, we end up paying $10, $20 or whatever it costs in order to replace the many power cables over and over and over again. Why? If we don’t, how do we juice up the hundreds of millions of iPhones that we’ve been manipulated into buying?

We all are suffering from the need to replace basic parts that are CRITICAL to keeping our phones on. Smart. Smart, but truly unethical.

A week earlier, I went to check why my iPhone 6+ and this phone hand me down from my son (the 7) were running incredibly slow and had battery draining issues that appeared to get worse — thus, the need to recharge my phone for the second time today. Yet with their software, they said my iPhones were “fine.” They are operating at 82% and 84% respectively. They were “ok,” but my phones are still as slow as that previous android molasses and constantly lacking battery power.

After I had checked in and got through the security checks here at Sea-Tac, the story for Apple’s latest lie pops up in my notifications ironically on my iPhone.

I checked their market cap and saw them still hovering around the trillion dollar range. Their P/E was 17 (quite weak for a technology company IMHO). However, they are worth close to a trillion dollars!

Why?

Because all of us don’t mind being lied to (or worse, cheated on).

While the company isn’t Donald Trump, they definitely practice business in similar ways — if you really think about it.

So, the next time you consider buying apple, I encourage you to think twice about why?

Is it because your phone is getting slow?

Is it because your battery is dying?

Or is it another odd quirk about your machine you never knew would happen and just assume is a minor glitch?

Should I buy another Apple?

Why not?!

It’s Apple.

They never lie.

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Brandon Na

Brewing something more exciting than life itself