Making Apple Mistakes

“Is that the iPad? So amazing. Don’t ya just love it?!” – asked my waiter the other day. Yes said I. Don’t know if he has iPhone or Mac, especially as you consider this the sans-PC (née post-PC) era, but it goes to show.


Pretty soon that too-often bandied about word will get the Unsuckit treatment, ala “term bloggers, marketers and other subhuman corporate-types use when blathering about quality, whilst trying to sell their latest app or book. Tool who said this also uses viral and eyeballs. ” Kidding.

Couple people asked why I got an iPhone 5, wondered why I didn’t opt for what they considered cheaper, better cough*Samsung*cough alternatives. Of course I looked. But I’m already invested in the ecosystem, and the iPhone will provide value now and probably years from now when maybe I sell it to upgrade.

The waiter, the ladies who do my mani-pedi – no one questions the value of the iToys. Most just wish they cost a little less. (See also, the rumored in-the-middle iPad Mini.) - The only problem I've ever had with my iPhone is you calling it.

As a business communication pro, it’s easy to see the marketing and PR value of making products that are the message, that customers will gush about to F&F. So what happens when they fail?

Apple is Human? Say it ain’t so.

I’ve been following the iOS 6 Maps disaster a little and am bemused by some of it. (I’ve gotten lost, but not really.)

I’m more intrigued by the ‘rip off the bandaid’ theories as Apple was facing a ‘now or never’ moment in its battle with Google’s Android. But like the also-beta Siri, Maps is far from ‘just works’ Apple standards – so far that CEO Tim Cook even apologized. And the bottom line?

While some argue it hurts sales, others say the Great Maps Debacle of 2012 isn’t a deal-breaker and iPhone 5 sales are just fine.

School’s In, Lessons for Small Business

  • Econ 101. Supply. Demand. Interest. Say what you will, but the pipeline selling out of something only makes it more newsworthy and seemingly, more valuable.
  • Don’t compromiseStick to your strengthsKnow yourself. Maybe Apple has piqued with the iPhone – because they got it “right” the first time. No reason to make sweeping, reactionary changes when smaller, smarter improvements are all that’s needed to make a great product even better. You know, when they work.
  • Rethink the market, make it yours. They make good stuff anyone can use, enjoy, and they know it. They aren’t just making product for Apple customers, they are making all people into Apple customers.

Is Apple mistake or marketing-proof? I don’t know. I’d like to mess up, miss expectations so well.

What I do know is that – mistakes and all – stocks and valuations will continue to yo-yo while units sell. Expectations will be in the stratosphere, and Apple will keep right on moving with the aforerumored iPad Mini (which will fit somewhere between the Touch and iPad, but not that much cheaper? Still not sure on that one).

I know Maps didn’t throw me or millions of other buyers off one beat. FWIW.

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