Saturday, September 29, 2012

Please, Tim Cook Wake Up Now

A few years ago my daughter's new Mac arrived home with an original iTouch. After an hour of loading apps and using the touch screen I knew that RIM was in trouble.

The fact that I haven't loaded iOS 6 on my iPhone yet (it's just a Maps app! after all) doesn't have quite the same sickening feeling of that night way back when, but it's close.

Like most people I just want my phone, computer, tablet to work. I'm not a technology person - I'm a user. The kind of person that was foreign to RIM several years ago. And, thanks to both RIM and Microsoft, I hate updates.

Updates screw things up, change settings, mess with reading lists, lose contacts, etc.

So. I've hesitated. And I've hesitated more subconsciously than consciously - it's some kind of RIMDOWS hangover. It's both interesting and troubling. Based on my experiences until now I never expected to think of Apple in the same light as those other, over-the-hill providers.

Unfortunately, my daughter didn't hesitate. She loaded the new Mountain Lion update on her Macbook Pro a couple of night ago. AND IT'S NEVER RESTARTED.

Clever me. I sent her to Google and the Apple website for fixes and insight. There are lots. She's not the only person this has happened to. Nothing helped.

But, HERE'S THE REAL SCREW UP. She took her Macbook Pro to the Apple Store the next day for some real help. Like many people (most? the world?) she needs her laptop for work.

And they told her to go away. How dare she just show up like that?! She didn't have an appointment.

In fact, they let her know pretty clearly that she was fairly nutzo for even thinking that she could just walk in and have someone take a look at her computer like that.Wow. Another. Dumb. Customer!

So she left. Helpless and angry. The clerk - is that what they call them at Apple Stores? - shrugged.

Which is the scary intersection with the other over-the-hill computer companies from the past. BEING BETTER AND SMARTER THAN THE CUSTOMER NEVER WORKS! It didn't work for RIM and won't work long for Apple.

The we-can-do-no-wrong attitude is what leads to risky, untested updates, failed apps, lousy service and weak apologies. Unchecked, it spells doom.

So. Tim Cook. Please wake up now. Whether you see it yet or not, Apple is in trouble.


Mark said...

Jim, ironically, the tech-savvy types who work in an Apple store are called "geniuses".

Mark said...

Jim, ironically, the tech-savvy types who work in an Apple store are called "geniuses", not clerks. Hope that makes your daughter feel better!

Andrew Ambrose said...

Thats disturbing. I recently had a bad apple and went to their store. It was one of the best experiences Ive had in customer service. Truly exceptional where he managed my expectations, kept my kids occupied with iPads and joked with my wife as he solved my issue.

I had to book an appointment to. 15 minutes from when I walked in and it went direct to my device and reminded me. :)

So the question I have, was it a single sour, stupid, clumsy individual or is it a corporate wide problem. I haven't enough experience with the store to say.

I did however update to iOS6 on my iPad and love it. (but don't give a crap about maps as I have my Galaxy S3 to get around accurately)

Play with your blackberry for an hour, I'm sure the enemy of your enemy will become your friend again.


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