Apple isn't a design company, it's a fashion company
0. phoneArena 30 Oct 2012, 18:15 posted on
One of the most commonly levied arguments against Apple is that the products don't change much, but are still sold at a premium cost. Often the counter-argument is made that the quality of an Apple device is what counts, rather than the functionality. People point to the ease of interaction, or the integration from software to hardware. We have even made the case that Apple is a design company first, but that isn't quite right. Apple isn't a design company, it's a fashion company...
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1. Johnnokia (Posts: 1093; Member since: 27 May 2012)
If Apple creates fashionable designs, what would say about Nokia ??!!.
6. Friendlysky (Posts: 54; Member since: 04 Jul 2012)
If you old enough to know history you might know that Nokia has being design and build their owned parts themself. They do not ask others company to build screen and chip for them like apple. Apple is a design company they are not an electronic company. I totally agreed with them.
46. neutralguy (Posts: 1152; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)
Actually, nokia don't manufacture those parts either, rather, get some other companies to manufacture it. Do you think, nokia manufacture its camera sensors? No. Screens? No. Polycarbonate plastic case? No.
Both of them are electronic/"phone designer" companies, no argument needed.
75. PhenomFaz (Posts: 1236; Member since: 26 Sep 2012)
Apple is a fashion company and not a very good one at that! Just take a look at the iPhone 5...nicks, scratches, paint wear-offs...at least apple should've gotten their fashion right since they clearly sacrificed functionality for fashion!
79. darkkjedii (Posts: 21201; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
How a bout the gs3's cracks between the camera and speaker and along the sides.
87. PhenomFaz (Posts: 1236; Member since: 26 Sep 2012)
the discussion was never of a samsung product you noob. Samsung may or may not have flaws it doesn't bother me...I am an android guy and that doesn't only mean sammy but sony, htc, moto, lg, etc.
And if the gs3 was so bad then it wouldn't have become the most pre-ordered electronic device in history and the single largest selling phone with over 30 million units! even in the week when iphone 5 released the gs3 sales spiked upwards and are still going at a steady rate whereas iphone 5 drama has fizzled out...!
Admit it...you know it...I OWN you TROLL!
99. Nadr1212 (Posts: 741; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)
I just wasted 5-10 mins of my life just to read this stupid article.
This is time I will NEVER get back no matter what
50. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)
And we see where that got them...
I'm sorry, but you cannot for a moment say that Apple isn't an electronic company. Luxury vehicle companies get components of their cars from other vendors (as does Ford, GM, Chrysler), but we still call them car/automotive companies. Arrow Dynamics was a roller coaster company, but they didn't manufacture or build the coaster themselves. They used Morgan Manufacturing to do it. Does that make them any less of a roller coaster company? I'd argue no.
Apple champions design, yes. They want their products to look good on your desk or when you're out. They want it to attract the eye so it can stand out from its competition. We see this in all areas of advertising and packaging of products. But what is fashion is based on the user. I didn't buy my iPhone to be fashionable especially since I usually wear jeans, Chucks, and a black hoodie everywhere I go. I bought it because it works just as well 2 years later as it did the first day I bought it. I cannot say the same about my old Blackberry, HTC Mogul, Palm Treo, or HTC Touch Pro (all companies I think we'd consider electronics companies). I didn't buy my iMac (something no one usually sees) because I want to show how well off I am (which I'm not). I bought it because I've literally never had to reformat a Mac since I started using them. Same goes with most of the Apple products I've purchased. I can't say that for the PC's I've owned and I was a BIG Apple hater back then.
Now, if Apple made legitimately crappy products...and not just what folks around here might call crappy because they don't like Apple...but universally critically panned products that just looked good, I'd be right on board with calling Apple a design company and their products fashion statements. But it's simply not true. Their products are not only critically acclaimed for their design, but their usability as well. And this isn't me just being a fanboy. You can look these reviews up yourself by professionals whose jobs are to review multiple products of all kinds of quality.
I understand why Apple may not work for you personally. I totally get it. But taking what the company has done and how it has changed the entire industry in just the course of these 5 years since the iPhone and saying...well Apple is just a design company...is just crap. Folks mocked the iPad, but tablets were dead in the water before it, now we've got every mobile phone company making one. You may hate FaceTime, but it finally took video streaming away from the carriers and put it in the hands of the handset creators (you should have seen the ridiculous price AT&T charged for their video share). People mocked the MacBook air, but all of a sudden all these UltraBooks appeared.
Apple designs every aspect of their products. If we are to criticize them for using vendors for parts, then there are a LOT of companies in other fields that we will have to do the same with. Apple is an electronics company.
71. ilia1986 (unregistered)
Jeff - the problem is that unlike other companies - Apple isn't willing to play nice with the competition - and because of the ridiculous patent system - it is a threat to anything and everything tech-related which is somehow competitive with it.
Company ethics aside - Apple is the only company which purposefully restricts it's product's functionality - so it can add it later on and call it a "revolutionary new feature". Were not talking here about small stuff. iOS users can't yet send files via email ffs.
You ARE right about one thing though - Apple isn't a fashion company - my SGS3 is arguably as recognizable as an iPhone. Heck, according to the jury of Samsung trial - they look the same (lol).
it's however amusing to read Michael's different explanations for why many people hate Apple (according to him - we just don't understand Apple) lol.
Have a nice day, y'all. :)
Sent from my Galaxy S3.
81. darkkjedii (Posts: 21201; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)
Wowwww Jeff. That's an awesome post bro. One can really see the thought that went into it, your input isn't even refutable. Very well said +1 bro.
84. ZEUS.the.thunder.god (unregistered)
+1 bro and I totally agree with you.
Apple make good products however I hate Apple for its rotten business practices and ethics. As illia1986 said Apple is not willing to play fair. They want to eliminate competition by hook or crook. Now thats the number one reason many people just hate apple.
72. Johnnokia (Posts: 1093; Member since: 27 May 2012)
common guys, it is a sarcasm ,,
Nokia is million times better than Apple.
sorry for misunderstanding
74. Nathan_ingx (Posts: 3751; Member since: 07 Mar 2012)
Whatever you say John.
But i'll stick with the headline! :)
Honestly, it's personal preference...it's like debating over which came first, the chicken or the egg.
It won't end... Apple lovers will defend, Others will offend.
98. Nadr1212 (Posts: 741; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)
SHUT UP PERSON IN THE VIDEO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
66. kevkyle (Posts: 101; Member since: 21 Oct 2012)
yOU Have got to visit engadget...It's martial law out there - comments against the IPad mini review are DELETED by moderators and the writer Tim Stevens - in real TIME.....absolutely outrageous....not Kidding!
....they banned commenters from Pocketnow too....anything against apple are deleted from their threads . Unbelievable!
68. RaKithAPeiRiZ (Posts: 1488; Member since: 29 Dec 2011)
This was very common ...i used to get banned every week when they had disqus on engadget
69. kevkyle (Posts: 101; Member since: 21 Oct 2012)
never once did i think nor believe techbloggers were on apple's payroll......sounded insane - ", ) - guess am wrong.....
now they're openly flaunting....clueless me, haha
88. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2703; Member since: 26 May 2011)
I haven't checked out the sites, but I'm curious on one point: are comments being deleted just for saying the iPad mini doesn't look good, or are comments being deleted because people can't stop directly attacking Apple and starting flame wars?
53. maxican16 (Posts: 364; Member since: 29 Sep 2011)
Yeah, that was my thought as well, but I tried to keep an open mind. I can see what the author is getting at.
So as android continues down the path set by Matias Duarte, and becomes more "fashionable" with its hardware design as well (it's already there in terms of software), even to the point it equals the attention to detail present in the iphone, then Apple is REALLY in trouble.
......I don't think that time is very far off.
3. pongkie (Posts: 538; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)
apple don't make fashionable designs they make simple designs.
5. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 637; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
Fashionability is not a matter of simplicity or complexity.
10. pongkie (Posts: 538; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)
come on apple may be a form of art but its not fashionable. most of thier products are aluminum where's the fashion in that.
17. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 637; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
It looks like you know what fashion is. So, what is fashion?
18. pongkie (Posts: 538; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)
something that make you stand out from the rest.
21. brandnew234 (Posts: 18; Member since: 12 Aug 2012)
So you couldn't tell an iPhone from ANY WP phone, or an Android (excluding iPhone copies)?
23. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 637; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
If something is fashion, that means it's a trend (recognizable), so it's exactly opposite of unique and does not stand out.
35. pongkie (Posts: 538; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)
Fashion is something iFans would not ever get. Fashion is also daring, new, adventureous, head turning.
walk in a mall with that black turtleneck and no one would care, then try out an outfit that is unique, fresh, daring, sexy(must have the body) and you'll know what fashion is.
Try going out with your friends and bring an iphone 4, iphone 4s, ip 5 and try switching it during that time. your friends wouldn't even notice that you actually used 3 different iphones in that day or do it with the different generations of ipad same thing.
67. Commentator (Posts: 3684; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)
What are you talking about? How is fashion anything other than what the socially accepted norm of appearance is? There's a reason "out of fashion" and "in fashion" are phrases. Lady Gaga (if she still exists) always runs around in weird "daring" styles, but I definitely would not call "her" fashionable.
20. brandnew234 (Posts: 18; Member since: 12 Aug 2012)
Fashion is opinion, you can't argue a favorite color, it's stupid. I personally love Android for the customization&screens, but I prefer the feel of an Apple product in my hand. Aluminum is a premium feel, so is glass. Plastic reminds me of toys and containers, large glass windows are seen as premium.
28. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
Well true saying, fashion is like Prada D&G Armani Ralph Lauren Paul Smith Hugo Boss, they use premium materials and stitching designs. Apple dosen't use ceramic nor Carbon-Fibre nor Kevlar or Liquid Metal..... What a joke!
89. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2703; Member since: 26 May 2011)
that's one of the odd things about the discussion: things that are fashion aren't necessarily fashionable, the two ideas are very different. Fashion is the product itself and the intent of the product. Fashionable is the public reaction to the product.
Fashion is also a highly subjective topic, what looks good to one won't look good to everyone. You may not like the fashion of Apple, but that doesn't mean it isn't fashion.
26. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)
The macbook air design stolen from Sonys Zseries. Only highend rich people use Zseries laptop!
The ip4 with ugly curves is no concept. Pansonic Eluga is a fashoin stlish phone.
True Apple is just a simple design with cheap material along with high price, but hardware are premium. Exynos, PvrSgxMp3...
47. quakan (Posts: 1373; Member since: 02 Mar 2011)
Lots of rich people use Mac computers. Tell me the last time you turned your T.V. on and saw a rich person without one, or better yet used a Z Series laptop? I have a MacBook Pro and I'm far from rich, just like I'm sure there are middle class people with Z Series laptops.
4. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 637; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
Designism is the enemy of design.
Designism is Microsoft. Design is Apple.
Because design is a surplus value of a form. And designism is the ideology of design, design for design's sake. That's why Jony Ive talks about "no-design" in his designs.
13. Captain_Doug (Posts: 997; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)
and water... is the essence... of beauty....
7. wassup (Posts: 565; Member since: 23 Jun 2011)
great article as always, Michael..
Apple is wannabe hipster, and it's the only reason wannabe hipsters spend money on it. That's it.
Android is a mixed bag, you have beautiful designs like the One X and the mixed bags like the S3/Note
Windows Phone is just... Colorful, the best way i can put it. But most of them look good though, just the 920 looking a bit stale.
there. my $0.02
14. Captain_Doug (Posts: 997; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)
Windows is colorful huh... flamboyant even.
15. wassup (Posts: 565; Member since: 23 Jun 2011)
definitely! not for me though.. there's such a thing as too colorful lol.
85. Captain_Doug (Posts: 997; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)
Agreed. I like my phones a bit more tasteful. Ergonomics is way more important to me in a phone then color. Not that you can't have both but I don't need/want my phone to make a statement for me. I don't think of my phone as an accessory, it's a tool.
9. bradley.block (Posts: 6; Member since: 01 Oct 2012)
This is probably the best article I have read on PH in a long time. For once hopefully people will start to see why Apple is who they are and why Google is Google. And why we choose the devices that we choose.
25. weinerslav (Posts: 126; Member since: 31 Jul 2012)
Fashion is not about being a follower, by the large volumes it sells, you can say is because of the design, but never because is fashion, people picks apple because of simplicity, like they picked nokia before...
37. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2703; Member since: 26 May 2011)
Why is design different from fashion? If people buy a shirt because it looks good, that's fashion, but if people buy an iPhone because it looks good, it's not?
54. weinerslav (Posts: 126; Member since: 31 Jul 2012)
It's different... there are great designs that aren't fashionable, and the opposite is even easier to find!
57. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2703; Member since: 26 May 2011)
What's fashionable and what is fashion are two very different things. The Gap has fashion, but so does Dolce & Gabbana.
90. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2703; Member since: 26 May 2011)
Exactly. Fashion is more in the intent of the creator. What's fashionable or trendy is based on the reaction of customers.
Apple is definitely intending to be fashion, and there are a lot of people out there who find Apple to be fashionable.
11. Captain_Doug (Posts: 997; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)
This is so well written. Good job Michael. Good job.
12. Sniggly (Posts: 7305; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)
This is a fair article. It's also something many of us here would readily acknowledge. Hell, even Verizon and Motorola recognized this. It's why, in one of their original ads for the Droid, they indirectly attacked the iPhone for being pretty yet less functional. The end of the ad said "It's not a princess, it's a robot. A phone that trades hairdo for can do."
16. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 637; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
How is that iPhone is less functional? It's intended to be functional as it is. It carries its function perfectly. Only if you think from an Android standpoint it's a less functional, but no one can really tell that the Android is the right way to go when designing something for humans, and market for that matter.
19. Aeires (unregistered)
Hipsters, that is all.
43. Aeires (unregistered)
If you ask, you missed the point.
78. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 637; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
That was rhetorical question. I'm checking your knowledge on hipsters, that is, your knowledge of what actually makes someone a hipster. And?
86. Aeires (unregistered)
Not falling for that bait, we both know you can't easily hang a definition on "hipster."
Here's what I see, this articles underlying theme is stop the OS wars. Well, easier said than done because the tech sites created a monster they can't really control without much work and negative repercussions.
When the iPhone was released, there appeared a large group of people who thought they were instantly better than everyone else because they owned Apple's new toy. Tech sites ignored them constantly bashing Android users when that OS appeared. Days, weeks, and months turned into years of abuse by the condescending iCrowd. Lag, POS, lipstick on a pig, fragmentation, DOA, and a wealth of other negative comments spewed at people just because they used a different type of phone. Tech sites let it go on, after all, Android users were a handful and page clicks were more important. A deep hatred festered.
Then it happened, suddenly this ridiculed crowd became the majority. And Apple started to falter with their mistakes ("you're holding it wrong"), giving the new majority a wealth of ammunition. Years of abuse turned into hatred and they lashed back. Now there's a major, unnecessary OS war that gets fought on tech sites. To stop it they'd have to ban people (which they should have done after the iCrowd acted the way they did) but that would hurt page clicks so they are left in a bad spot.
It's not about fashion, everyone knows people bought the original iPhone because they thought it had the cool factor. Hollywood bought into it, thereby making a ton of people want it for no other reason than that. We've know for ages the iPhone is more of a fashion statement than a piece of hardware, it's nothing new.
People don't hate Apple for that, they hate them for the way their customers act, and they still act that way every day. It's not about fashion, it's about how people have been treated.
Before Apple made the iPhone, people got along much better on tech sites.
92. AppleConspiracy (Posts: 637; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)
It's all a story about Apple, but it's only a part of bigger picture. Apple phenomenon showed us the true nature of our system of values and its underlying mechanisms. Before Apple, the World was hidden from itself, concealed by empty ideologies that supposedly constituted our society. But now, we know the truth. The only thing you were actually wrong about in your comment is that you don't want to accept this truth.
Apple is a religion, it's not a brand, be it fashion or technical.
And this religion created its contra-religions. This has nothing to do with actual people being greedy.
And for the hipster part: I would say I know the correct definition very well ;-)
100. Aeires (unregistered)
You give too much credit to Apple, and that I can accept as truth.
22. weinerslav (Posts: 126; Member since: 31 Jul 2012)
This article is a bit... weird! "all of the Apple haters: consider how you think about fashion" this is not a linear matter, I am a fashionable person (discreet, don't really like to dress as a peacock) and I would never buy apple because of the company ethics, it depends more on who you are, than anything else! Meanwhile, since I would never buy the iphone, I had the original Prada, the Armani phone as secondary phones and now I have the Prada 3.0 as main phone, so like in real fashion you can pick always an alternative, and believe me, you don't wanna be seen in the streets with someone wearing the same clothes you're using, the same goes with phones for me, and I'd imagine most of the fashion conscious persons, I always had the most original phones I could find, and I'm sorry, you'd need to be very disconnected about this matter to believe that trends and fashion is the same, the iphone is a nice phone, but it's a trend and trends are like old fashion, fashion is what comes next, or at least if you have a visual identity that can stand against what came next, witch in case of men is far easy than for women...
30. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2703; Member since: 26 May 2011)
Obviously, there are those who fall on all parts of the spectrum, and there are those who will care about fashion, but still not like Apple. Just trying to hit the general feelings.