Rod Dreher

Rod Dreher

Apple Nazi: ‘No bumpers for you!’

It’s not Godwin’s Law, it’s a lame “Seinfeld” reference! Anyway, Apple sells an apparent defective product to its customers, then allegedly tells its AppleCare reps to tell disappointed iPhone 4 users, “Tough ti**y said the kitty.” Excerpt:

A purported internal memo to AppleCare representatives explicitly tells employees that the company is not “appeasing customers with free bumpers,” and instructs them to advise customers to avoid grasping the lower left corner of the handset.
The document, allegedly obtained by Boy Genius Report, covers the same territory as a statement from the company last week. Apple has advised its customers to avoid gripping the iPhone 4 in the lower left corner in a way that covers both sides of the black strip in the metal band.
But it also uses strong language to inform AppleCare representatives that Apple is not giving away free protective “bumpers,” which the company has said help to alleviate the reception issues.
“We ARE NOT appeasing customers with free bumpers — DON’T promise a free bumper to customers,” the memo reads.

Here’s a link to the text of the actual purported Apple instruction memo to its AppleCare reps. Uh-oh. This is not going to be good for the Cult of Apple.

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posted June 30, 2010 at 8:52 am

This comes as no big surprise to anyone who views Apple as any other company and their products as any other products, rather than worshiping them as status symbols. iPhone users have been suffering with a bad product (on some fronts, certainly not all) for a long time.
Jobs has been pitching inferior ideas as “selling features” for a long time. Two mouse buttons are better then one, and everyone knows it.

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posted June 30, 2010 at 9:30 am

This won’t affect the real Apple fanbois at all. The all-knowing, all-benevolent Steve Jobs is just showing us the correct way to hold a cell phone. We all had been doing it in an uncool fashion for all these years and in our ignorance didn’t even realize it. His wonderful Appleness has once again showed us the way to be cool.

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Bruce G

posted June 30, 2010 at 9:55 am

Two mouse buttons are better then one, and everyone knows it.
How about three-button mice? Four-button? More are automatically better?
Have you actually used a one-button mouse for any length of time? Hitting ctrl-click really isn’t any harder to do, your left hand is already on the keyboard. And I would argue on a notebook computer, ctrl-click is actually easier than trying to twist your hand to access a trackpad’s “right” click button.

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posted June 30, 2010 at 10:19 am

Apple could be looking for a solution. The bumpers could be one solution, but there could be others and if Apple simply gave away bumpers without exploring other solutions first would not be good.
Secondly this problem is not limited to the iPhone, you can recreate the problem with Palm Pres, blackberries and other phones made in the last year or two. It has to do with the FCC’s regulations on where antennas can be located.
So lets give Apple time and not just jump to conclusions.

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posted June 30, 2010 at 10:59 am

Jobs is a genius. He’s found a pathway through the brain of even highly intelligent people which bypasses critical thought entirely. He’s convinced half this nation that they just simply can’t live without whatever fool device of the week they’re selling. They have you buying the notion that these silly things somehow “enhance” your personal productivity. They do, in the same way that amphetamines enhanced the productivity of workers in Japan’s WW II munitions plants…. But Apple has you eating out of their hand and even if this bumperless thing crumbles before your eyes, you’ll run out to drop fat money on the next iDevice of the week.

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Appalachian Prof

posted June 30, 2010 at 11:17 am

“We ARE NOT appeasing customers with free bumpers — DON’T promise a free bumper to customers.”
I love it. The writers for “The Simpsons” now have nothing to do.

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posted June 30, 2010 at 1:25 pm

This iPhone reception problem is overblown. It is not a universal flaw. It affects relatively few iPhone owners — mainly left-handers who happen to be in areas of poor network coverage, and who hold the phone in a certain way that tightly cups the bottom of the phone.
A bumper or other cover may help a little (and is something every iPhone owner should invest in for shock protection regardless.) Apple may also be able to improve things with a software patch, but there is only so much they can do until AT&T can fill in it’s coverage better. As Steve jobs wrote, holding the phone differently is probably the best solution.
In the mean time the Apple Haters (Fandroids) will have a field day whipping up FUD as they attempt to exaggerate every Apple shortcoming, not matter how rare or contrived. Pathetic really, as personal recommendations from the growing numbers of satisfied iPhone owners to their friends and associates will completely swamp out the negativity of the geek blogger echo chamber. The Haters just can’t seem to stop Apple’s accelerating success.

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Rev. Mike

posted June 30, 2010 at 11:54 pm

Ditto to Paul and Brett. I’ve been a bit surprised by the folks who are amazed that you can lay an iPhone flat on a table, get one signal strength, and hold it perpendicular to the ground and get a different signal. I’m a mechanical engineer by vocation and know diddly about antenna design, especially for cell phones, but for any of us who grew up with rabbit ears on TVs and saw the reception change when we moved the aerials or when we took our fingers off of them, is the alleged behavior of the iPhone really all that surprising? It’d be nice to have an electrical engineer weigh in on this.dominica

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Rev. Mike

posted June 30, 2010 at 11:54 pm

(Sorry … the captcha got captured in the last comment.)

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John E. - Agn Stoic

posted July 1, 2010 at 12:49 pm

The inevitable Hitler/Downfall parody can be found here:

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