Most of this week’s rumors focused on parts leaks related to the new iPhone that’s maybe (probably) getting released next month. We’ll get to those later. Let’s start with an example of how some credulous writers may find themselves getting screwed — literally.
Some random Redditor posted pictures of an alleged asymmetric screw intended for future products that even BGR acknowledged was “of dubious veracity.” Personally, I’d have put the odds of this thing’s veracity at way, way less than one percent, but did a moment’s thought stop the march of speculation?
Of course not. That’s why this morning’s announcement that the entirety of “Screwgate” was dreamed up by a Swedish design firm, just to see how much rumor mayhem they could cause, is so amusing and disturbing. They made the model, they posted it on Reddit, they waited. Boom. (Obviously, that’s a more effective technique than sending it to us and claiming you found it randomly on the Apple Store.)
Cult of Mac’s gullibility recap takes the position that their original reporting included “a degree of healthy skepticism” about the likelihood of the renders representing reality; you can check out the initial post and decide for yourself if the scare-the-cows, hide-the-children headline tracks with that assertion.
As to why this didn’t make any sense in the first place, forgetting the throwaway Reddit account provenance: Apple’s existing “pentalobe” screws on the iPhone and MacBook Pro with Retina Display are more than enough to keep all but the most dedicated of DIY enthusiasts from prying at the case (I say that knowing full well which shelf my pentalobe driver is on). Changing to an even screwier design for the fasteners would have come at a high cost in retrofit and service updates, all for essentially zero tangible benefit to the company.
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster chased after his white whale yet again, this time in the form of a survey. He asked 200 people in the American Midwest if they’d buy a new TV if it had an Apple logo somewhere on it. Around 98 of those 200 people said, “Yes, I would totally buy this completely hypothetical product despite no one ever producing the slightest physical evidence of its existence or rationale for Apple to sell one” (not a direct quote).
29 percent of survey respondents said they’d buy the thing even if they weren’t in the market for a new TV in the first place. These impressive percentages dropped sharply as the make-believe price for the mythical product rose; only about 24 of 200 people expressed any interest if the cost were over $1500.
Apple has repeatedly said it doesn’t know how to make a budget-priced computer that isn’t a clunker, and while the iPhone and iPad’s prices compare favorably against their competitors, neither of them are exactly impulse buys. My question is, who are these people who expect Apple to produce a 50-inch HDTV with unparalleled screen quality, built-in storage, apps, access to the App Store, voice-activated interface, and a built-in juicer all for less than $1500?
CouponCodes4u (sounds legit!) ran a survey significantly broader in scope than Munster’s — nearly 1900 respondents on this one. Brace yourselves, because the results of the survey are (not really) shocking (at all). Given a choice between buying the new iPhone or the still-imaginary iPad mini, a full 80 percent of survey respondents said they’d go for the iPhone.
But why? According to the rumors, the iPad mini is supposed to be the Apple Product of the Year, isn’t it? Not so much; 46 percent of people not interested in an iPad mini felt the product was “pointless.”
I’m torn on this one. On one hand, this survey almost perfectly echoes my own thinking. I don’t see a point to the iPad mini, and it seems Apple would be making a mistake to release a product that would only cannibalize sales of the more expensive iPad Se