Apple MobileMess

mm.gifThis week, Tech pundit David Pogue make some excellent points about Apple’s new endeavor to provide Microsoft “Exchange for the rest of us” with Apple’s new MobileMe service. Not only did they give former .Mac subscribers the option to NOT take part in this new service and keep other service that are no longer offered, but Apple has had interminable problems with the new service.

The worst part is, however, the cold shoulder that Apple gives to those who get screwed.

In his NY Times article, David Pogue goes out of his way to give Apple the benefit of the doubt:

“O.K., look: Even big companies screw up. Intel’s done it. Microsoft’s done it. Google’s done it.”

“Still, things can go wrong. We get that.”

But, thankfully he is spot-on when he takes Apple to task for their standard “say nothing” practice. That’s fine when it comes to new product announcements. But when you are providing an active service that is having serious problems, the company needs to be proactive about communication- especially when communication is the exact service they are trying to sell with MobileMe.

“We’re very thankful for our loyal customers’ patience as we work out the kinks.”

It’s exactly this aloof nature that once again demonstrates that Apple has stopped listening and acting on the best interests of its core computing customers. It’s this same indifference that ensures that makes formerly loyal customers go away- and that’s a BIG big loss to a company like Apple which rests it’s laurels, and financial future, on loyalty.

In comparison, when the company that hosts my corporate web site had a construction company down the street cut through the fiber that connected their servers to the world, they physically moved boxes to another site to get the word out about what was being done. They showed pictures of the construction, the cut cables, and hourly updates on the blog they created to inform customers what was being done to get their web sites, stores and e-mail back into service.

It took the better part of a day, but I remain a loyal customer of my hosting company because they COMMUNICATED with me the challenges they faced and the actions they took.

Apple’s technology failures here are far worse (actual lost data) and extend over a far longer time. So their tact of non-communication is one that I would not tolerate. I hope that affected MobileMe subscribers ask for a refund for services not provided, sue for damages where appropriate, and put there money where their mouth is- if you are not satisfied, take your money elsewhere.

Loyalty here does NOT produce a better product.

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