The ‘New’ Apple Apologizes Early and Often

Apple iPhone 6

Whereas the “old” Apple under Steve Jobs was famously (or infamously) stingy with its official apologies and patches, Tim Cook’s “new” Apple practically stumbles over itself to fix whatever’s wrong. Within a few hours of users reporting issues with iOS 8.0.1, Apple yanked the update and offered a temporary fix:

“We have a workaround for you if you have an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus and you lost cellular service and Touch ID functionality today after updating to iOS 8.0.1. You can reinstall iOS 8 through iTunes by following the instructions below. We are also preparing iOS 8.0.2 with a fix for the issue, and will release it as soon as it’s ready in the next few days.”

Users who want to reinstall iOS 8.0 will need the latest version of iTunes. After connecting your iPhone to the host computer, download the appropriate file for either the iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus from Apple’s support site, click “Check for Update” within iTunes, and update.

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Apple coupled the workaround with an apology emailed to media outlets: “We apologize for the great inconvenience experienced by users, and are working around the clock to prepare iOS 8.0.2 with a fix for the issue, and will release it as soon as it is ready in the next few days.”

That helpful response is a world away from, say, “Antennagate,” during which Steve Jobs suggested that iPhone 4 users hold their phone differently in order to sidestep known antenna issues; only after that response sparked a furor did Apple retreat and offer a complementary rubber case that would solve the problem.

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The snafu with iOS 8.0.1 isn’t the first time that Tim Cook’s Apple has rushed out an acknowledgment of regret. In 2012, Cook posted a letter on Apple’s website apologizing for Apple Maps, which featured numerous inaccuracies in its initial release. “While we’re improving Maps,” the letter concluded, “you can try alternatives by downloading map apps from the App Store like Bing, MapQuest and Waze, or use Google or Nokia maps by going to their websites and creating an icon on your home screen to their web app.”

The suggestion that an iOS user rely on competing products isn’t something that Apple under Steve Jobs would likely have condoned. In retrospect, though, it was the first sign that Tim Cook intended to run the company quite a bit differently than his predecessor. This apology for iOS 8.0.1 is yet another.

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Image: Apple