Friday, July 18, 2008

Sugar Atop Sour Apples

Apple's MobileMe transition, which I criticized as blundering (and possibly reflecting a worrisome service quality trend), has garnered its users an apology and a 30-day service extension.

The question is, of course, whether it'll be thirty more days of irritation, or whether Apple will get things straightened out so as to make it thirty days of effective advertisement for future service offerings.

UPDATE: It's not looking good for Apple, here -- it's made another apology and another 30-day extension to customers who thought they were signing up for a free trial and got a pre-authorization for a full year's subscription, which in the case of debit cards ties up over €130 until the customer's back frees to hold, meaning that their checks could bounce or authorizations could be denied in the meantime. Apple's story: we only meant to pre-authorize the equivalent of US$1, sorry. These folks are getting a 120-day trial, apparently. Again, let's hope the extra time serves as a good ad for Apple's service.

So far, Apple isn't sending a very strong message that taking care of its service customers is very important. As an Apple shareholder, of course, I am indignant that Apple should so risk its growing reputation through such neglect. As one who ditched Apple's online services years ago due to persistent service issues (which I detailed in numerous feedback posts, after each upgrade that failed to solve the myriad issues plaguing my use of the service), I have to say I am sadly unsurprised.

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