How angry is Apple that videos showing the Apple iPhone 6 Plus
bending have gone viral? So angry that the tech titan has pulled its Public Relations credentials from Europe's top selling computer magazine. By making this move, Apple is keeping #bendgate alive. The company, more than any other in the industry, should know by now that once you've done damage control, you let the story die from natural causes.
The magazine, Computer Bild
, purchased an Apple iPhone 6 Plus following news that the phones were bending in the front pockets of purchasers
. So the magazine decided to hold its own test, and made a video showing the phablet bending. On YouTube, over 200,000 watched the device bend. Computer Bild
said that they were surprised at how easily the phone buckled.
Apple did the things that a company needs to do when this sort of thing happens to it. They took the media on a tour of a factory where the iPhone undergoes stress tests. Apple also pulled out a stat showing that only nine consumers had complained to the company about their phone bending
. Had Apple stopped at that point, #bendgate would have died out like Antennagate did before it. Instead, Apple got in touch with Computer Bild
and allegedly told the publication that it would not receive anymore Apple review units and also would no longer receive credentials to cover official Apple events.
The magazine wrote a rather lengthy letter to Tim Cook, which we have reproduced in its entirety, below. Let us know what you think of the issue and the letter by dropping your comments in the box below.
Dear Mr. Tim Cook!
Just like anyone else who is obsessed with digital technology we have eagerly awaited the new iPhone. We felt relief when the head of our telecom department one day shouted “Here we go!”, presenting an invitation to the great event. And certainly we took a flight, went all the way to California, just to tell our readers every detail about the device that you and your company have worked on so hard for such a long time.
When the iPhone 6 Plus finally hit the market we noticed a few reports on a possible problem. According to them the case seemed to be weak, “bendable”, to drop the evil word. Being popular for our tests with utmost scrutiny, we could not leave the subject without comment. Of course that required further tests since testing new products without any prejudice is our obligation to our readers.
And so we bought an iPhone 6 Plus, just to find out whether it was a singular problem or some kind of hoax. The test was quite simple, so we could easily record it on video. Just to prove that what happens is nothing but the truth.
To be honest: We were shocked about how easy it was to bend the device. And so were around 200.000 viewers who watched the video up until now. We can imagine that you and your colleagues must have been shocked, too. This might have been the reason why we got a call from one of your german colleagues the next morning. He was upset, and it was a rather short conversation. “From now on”, he said, “you won’t get any devices for testing purposes and you will not be invited to Apple events in the future.”
Dear Mr. Cook: Is this really how your company wants to deal with media that provide your customers with profound tests of your products? Do you really think that a withdrawal of Apple’s love and affection could have an intimidating effect on us? Luckily we do not have to rely on devices that Apple provides us with. Luckily, a lot of readers are willing to pay money for our magazine to keep us independent. So we are able to buy devices to do our tests anyway. Even devices of manufacturers that seem to fear COMPUTER BILD’s independent judgement.
Even if we are quite dismayed about Apple’s reaction, we won’t give up our principles: We will continue our incorruptible tests that have the same high reputation in the german media-landscape as Apple has for its products. So far. We congratulate you to your fine new generation of iPhones, even if one of them has a minor weakness with its casing. But we are deeply disappointed about the lack of respect of your company.
Editor in Chief COMPUTER BILD-Group