After reading articles like this, you have to wonder if Martin Peers is short-selling Apple stock, or perhaps a paid consultant for a competing cellphone corporation. Or else is quoting, without attribution, trash-talk from a friend who is a member of one of these cult-like Wall Street industries.
If the iPhone 4 has become “the most successful product launch in Apple’s history,” as the company says, one wouldn’t want to imagine the worst.
Apple’s statement overlooked the fact that its fourth-generation phone has an antenna design that may require consumers either to buy a case or learn to hold the phone in a particular way to ensure reception. Usually the idea is to produce phones that get clearly better, not worse, with each new version.
So far at least, Apple’s cult-like fan base seems willing to give the company the benefit of the doubt. Apple said Monday the product had sold a remarkable 1.7 million units in the first three days.
Investors shouldn’t take too much comfort, however. A lot of those sales likely came from preorders placed before reports of the antenna weakness circulated. What’s more, many of the initial sales also were likely upgrades by existing iPhone owners. These people already have shown themselves willing to put up with reception problems—although in the past they could blame AT&T’s clogged network.
The real question has to be whether concerns about the antenna, combined with carrier congestion issues, will slow uptake of the iPhone among customers not yet converted to Apple worship. Not only are they likely to be less patient with any product failings, they can now choose from an ever-widening array of alternative smartphones.
(click to continue reading HEARD ON THE STREET: The Curious Case of iPhone 4 – WSJ.com.)
In Mr. Peers world, isolated media reports about antenna failure if you hold your fingers in an odd spot is the same as an antenna failure in all 1,700,000 iPhone 4s sold.1 Also, if you purchase an iPhone, you apparently join some sort of religious cult, though I don’t know why this is even relevant to the WSJ readership. I’m not sure how purchasing an electronic gadget transforms one into a brain-eating zombie, Mr. Peers forgot to include his exposition explaining how this occurs, or the editors removed it for space reasons. Maybe FaceTime does something to your neurons?
Another point worth noting, Mr. Peers believes there are exactly zero improvements in the iPhone 4; battery life increases, better camera, higher pixel display, these are actually downgrades. Who knew? Silly me for believing that doubling the RAM2 would be an enhancement.
Look, corporations are not people3, and Apple is not your aunt Millie – Apple deserves and should receive criticism sometimes. But this Martin Peers dude isn’t dishing any valid criticisms, he’s just asking to replace John Dvorak as linkbait troll of the day, worthy of cynical laughter, no more.Footnotes: