Once Again, 'Cool' Passes Me By
Let me start by confessing I am not a big fan of Apple. I never liked the user interface on Mac (probably because I have been a PC guy from the get-go). The iPods I got over the years all sucked (most especially the Nanos). They broke down within hours of the warranties' expirations -- and Apple, despite the phony "I am here to help you" facade at the stores, is just as unresponsive to problems as any other tech company. By contrast, the much-maligned Zune has worked perfectly for me from the start. So it was not hard for me to stay with BlackBerry when iPhones exploded on the scene. The rest of the family all migrated to iThis and iThat, while I bang away on my Dell and Bold.
It’s yet another indicator to my kids that I am older than the Ice Age that I have not gotten an iPhone. They are all about what is "cool" and au courant. I was too at their age. But now I am about function over form, and can survive just fine with Sony headphones instead of Beats and a hardback book rather than an iPad or a Kindle.
So I noted with amusement that in all the hyperbolic coverage of the newest iPhone, Apple changed the charger cord, rendering all previously purchased charger cords obsolete. Oh, you can spend something like $30 each for an adapter that will link your old charger with the new iPhone. Now, I am not an expert in electronics manufacturing -- but I suspect those adapters cost Apple about 15 cents each to have mass-produced in China. You can do the math on the markup. And having one won't cover you for the various charger cords you have squirreled away in places like your overnight bag, your briefcase, your office and the one beside your bed.
So when you calculate the cost to own the new iPhone, don't just try to outguess what your new pay-for-consumption data plan will look like, because it delivers the Internet something like 10 times faster than before, tossing in a hundred or so bucks for adapters. Oh, and the new hardshell -- since the dimensions are JUST slightly off from previous versions of the iPhone.
For those of you who cannot confess your addiction (and make amends by switching over to a different smartphone to escape the perpetual Apple churn of "new" versions -- it should just warm your heart to see that the most recent model can now be had for $99), you might want to check into some sort of rehab facility specializing in talking you down from the urge to run out and buy the next shiny new object from Apple. With any luck, the company’s stock will drop, and we can stop all this nonsense about Apple being one of the biggest, most influential companies in the history of the equities market.
Who knows -- the newfound humility just might prompt the top-level execs there to tuck in their shirts the next time they appear onstage. But probably not. It’s just not cool.