With the recent release of the Apple watch, it’s an opportunity to ponder on just why a box of electrical components named after a fruit can be so divisive.
I started my career in IT working for a large Apple specialist at a time when iphones and ipads were merely a glint in the eye of a relatively unknown chap called Steve Jobs and one thing was true then that is equally true now – some people just seem to hate Apple.
And they really do hate Apple, in fact you rarely see such venom directed at a brand. Politics, religion and of course football all stir this kind of sentiment but surely people aren’t this mad at a company that makes computers? It turns out they are. So why?
Maybe it’s simply because on the other side of the coin some people seem to have an irrational love for Apple. After all some people camp outside the Apple store days before the release of a new product and there are even people that have chosen to get a tattoo of the Apple logo. To the layperson this level of devoted Apple fandom can seem a bit bonkers, misguided and sometimes annoying.
It’s true that the proprietary element of Apple and their apparent lack of willingness to play nicely with other technology manufacturers seems to create suspicion in some people.
And Apple’s unflinching dedication to being a bit wacky can become tiresome for some. I once went to Apple’s head office in Stockley Park when the meeting rooms were named after movies, and so I had a meeting in a room named “Jurassic Park.” I was also given a rubber stress toy that looked like a purple octopus to help calm me for the duration. It’s not hard to see how this kind of thing can be a bit ‘marmite’!
But surely we should form opinions on any technology based purely on its technological merits, not as a reaction to how we or other people choose to perceive a brand identity? More often than not the technological arguments for and against Apple are rarely based on fact and driven more by emotion. So is this part of Apple’s genius? They have created a brand that people become truly emotive about – And people make buying decisions based on emotions, good or bad.
Of course it’s not just the tech savvy that have been influenced into possessing such strong opinions. One of my neighbours, a gentleman in his seventies who has no interest in technology, recently asked me for advice on buying a computer. Whilst making some suggestions, he interrupted me to tell me he hates Apple. “Why?” I asked. “I just do” he replied, with the kind of scorn he normally reserves for David Cameron or Tottenham Hotspur. I suggested an HP model and he calmed down.
So after being told about the release of the Apple watch I immediately declared to my colleagues it was “ridiculously expensive and stupid.” I’ve heard the odd sound bite but ultimately I know very little about the Apple watch, so why have do I feel entitled to share such an uninformed damnation?!
Conversely, whilst typing this article and becoming frustrated with my PC, I told one of my colleagues that “you don’t get this problem with a mac.”
Now I’m more confused than ever. So here at Pro Drive we would be interested in what you think. Click on the link below and tell us whether or not you love Apple or hate Apple!