Early this year, well, January 1, to be exact, I made this prediction about our friends at Apple:
Apple will see a significant reversal of recent fortunes. I sense this will happen for a number of reasons … but I think the main one will be brand related – a brand based on being cooler than the other guy simply does not scale past a certain point. I sense Apple has hit that point.
Now, “brand” is a very tricky concept. A brand lives or dies by how others speak of it. And lately, in the circles of folks who I’d call “brand influencers” in the digital space, the conversation has turned negative.
Not only has Apple taken a major hit from both observers and the FCC for its hamhanded rejection of Google’s iPhone application (among others), the company’s ongoing refusal to engage in a dialog with its customers (no Twitter account, no participation in industry conferences) is starting to wear thin. For more than a few folks I talk to on a daily basis, the Apple brand means “great products, but the company really couldn’t care less about you as a person, and frankly, is smarter than you, better looking than you, and above your station.”
Call it a gut feeling, but my favorite maker of computer products is starting to feel, well, out of touch. Am I off here?