Are you listening, Apple?

The tagline of this blog is “Software is awful.” We all know that. But hardware can be equally awful as well.

David Heinemeier Hansson throwing down some truth on Apple’s deaf ears:

My great hope for the keyboard debacle is that Apple pulls a Johnson & Johnson 1982 move and recalls every single laptop they’ve sold since 2015, and gives buyers a new scissor-keyboard equipped model instead. How many billions might that cost? A quarters’ worth of buybacks?

It sounds so implausible under modern corporate ethics. Where Apple is a forerunner in deny, deflect, delay, and dismiss. But it doesn’t have to be that way. The most profitable computer company in the history of the world could choose a different way.

I know it’s institutionally almost impossible for Apple to accept that they not only fucked up the MacBook’s keyboard, but that they failed to fix their fuckup for 4 years running, with several attempts. They’re proud people, Apple. But I’d be prouder still of them if they did.

Johnson & Johnson correctly diagnosed in 1982 that the Tylenol murders had the potential to run their business and their brand for decades to come. They recalled every bottle, even if it wasn’t their fault!, and they won consumer confidence back.

Apple’s consumer confidence amongst people who’ve been stricken by the keyboard debacle is hurting. Maybe it’s not showing up in their net-promoter scores yet, but it’s there. Oh it’s there. I-FUCKING-BOUGHT-A-WINDOWS-LAPTOP it’s there.

Hey @tim_cook, I know you know the Johnson & Johnson Tylenol case study. I doubt there’s a business major who hasn’t been exposed to that one. Consider how you might turn this keyboard debacle into the next case study we’ll talk about in 30 years 🙏_

Apple sells $25B worth of Mac stuff per year. The keyboards have been fucked for four years. They sold $100B of Mac stuff in that time frame. Say half of that is laptops? $50B. Say half would do exchange program? $25B. To win the hearts and minds back? CHEAP!

Compared to the cost of losing customers forever, it’s a steal.

Are you listening, Apple?

This is neither rare nor isolated nor fixable with a program that gives you another shitty keyboard of the same design that’ll go bust again.

Apple, can you hear us now? You’re squandering two decades worth of developer goodwill with this shit.

Jared Floyd replies:

That’s where I am. This MacBook Pro is my last Apple laptop after 20 years. I’ve replaced 10 keys so far — at my own expense because AppleCare wants to take away my primary work tool for several days for warranty repairs. This is garbage.

Keyboards. Catalina. iOS 13. Bricked HomePods. Broken multitasking.

What in the actual fuck is happening?

Are they just too focused on Apple Card, Apple TV+, and selling hardware subscriptions?