Following the Antennagate news conference, certain critics quickly concluded that Apple was acting like its usual arrogant self.
I couldn’t agree more.
How dare Apple think they can make this problem go away with a free case that makes the problem go away. They need to suffer more than that.
This company was practically founded on arrogance. Imagine, two guys in a garage thinking they could out-compute companies like IBM and HP. In later years, they’d tell us to abandon the standard PC interface and use some silly mouse to control our computers. With smug superiority, they’d cut out the floppy disk we’d come to love. Errgh.
If only we thought to stop them then.
Because it wasn’t long after that Apple — a company without any real consumer electronics experience — had the gall to build the music player that Sony or some better-qualified company should have built. This self-appointed savior of the music business somehow seduced the record companies with an online music store that forces us all to go along with “their vision” of how music should be sold.
With iPhone, Apple took its arrogance to an extreme. They marched right into a market owned by big, successful global companies like Motorola and Nokia, believing they could “school them” by reimagining the smartphone. How self-important can a company get?
Then came iPad, where Apple’s arrogantly arrogant take on arrogance was laid bare for all to see. This is pure Apple, telling us they can do what Microsoft and others had failed to do for a decade before. Overnight, they create a new category and expect us to follow their vision for the future of computing? And suck us into making even more purchases at the iTunes Store?
It’s gotten to the point where Apple doesn’t even try to disguise their arrogance. They’re a company that creates devices other companies should have created, follows standards only when it pleases them, shuns research to create only the products they’d like to use themselves — and then won’t even let outsiders tamper with the platforms they’ve created!
Look what they’ve done to poor Adobe, yanking away their right to spend more than three years figuring out how to run Flash on mobile devices. Look what they’ve done to the world’s developers, telling them to write specifically for iPhone rather than just port over apps designed for less capable phones. Compounding their sin, they have the unrelenting gall to insist that apps meet some basic standards for quality and reliability. With their “our way or the highway” attitude, Apple takes choice away from customers, forcing them to settle for a library of only 225,000 apps.
In my mind, Apple is just another in a long list of companies who make the mistake of following their own vision — like Porsche or Nike. Whatever happened to just fitting in?
Obviously, Apple’s excessive arrogance will be their downfall. Never mind that their market share has been so rapidly increasing for so long in so many categories. Or that Apple’s business model produces vastly more profit than those of other technology companies. Chalk that up to good fortune.
One day all the sheep under Steve Jobs’ spell will wake up and demand that Apple act more like other technology companies. Then at last iPhones can be more like Droids, Macs can be more like PCs and Apple can enjoy the PC makers’ perennial sense of economic doom. Apple shareholders will finally be able to rejoice in an investment that avoids such dizzying heights.
That’s the way it oughta be.