I wonder whether Apple’s Tim Cook appreciated the irony of the two images adorning the Apple.com homepage this week? The Apple CEO’s message regarding the US tech firms commitment to privacy appeared right alongside an image advertising the band U2’s album with the strapline “And it’s already in your iTunes music library”.
I believe Apple should learn an important lesson from the comedy juxtaposition of images, and it seems they have with the release of a “one click removal button” just days after the album launch. It seems not everyone keeps abreast of the iTunes marketing hype and unaware of the free nature of the album initially cried “virus” on social media sites. Even as the outraged re-tweets subsided it became apparent that free stuff is not necessarily welcome stuff, and more importantly some Apple fans were most definitely not U2 fans. So the removal button is made available and the furore died down but what should we take from this?
Well in my opinion Apple should learn that lovely as their precious hardware is, we the consumer are the actual owners. And the giant behemoth that is the iTunes Store, spewing forth it’s free stuff and recommended items we’ve never heard of? Well lets say it again loud, “We are the consumer!“, we may like free stuff but it should be our decision over the digital content that enters our lives.
Aside from the fact that I became bored by iPhone, personal control is one of the reasons I love my Windows Phone. I applaud Microsoft for giving me a phone OS which allows me to remove almost all the pre-installed Apps (including Mail and People). There are very few things that can’t be removed from a Windows Phone 8 should you with to return your phone to the Nokia 6210 era. As it happens I like some of Microsoft Apps, they took time but they’re really trying and are starting to have some pleasing results. It could be that as the underdog in the mobile arena they are that much more focussed on listening to their consumers needs rather than lording it over the great fan-boy masses. Whatever the reason I hope Microsoft maintain the current ethos of Windows Phone 8.1, it’s a breath of fresh air and at present is free from the whiff of Orwellian control you feel from the Apple and Google sphere.
This stories a couple of weeks old and you can read the BBC’s take on events here but Apple really should choose their homepage advertisements with care.