“This has been the winter of our discontent. 2016 was the year the tone changed,” Chuq Von Rospach blogs. “There’s always been a lot of criticism and griping about anything Apple does (and doesn’t do — it can’t win) but in 2016 I feel like the tone of the chatter about Apple changed and got a lot more negative.”

“This is worrisome on a number of levels and I’ve been thinking about it a lot. I’m used to watching people kvetch about the company, but this seems — different. One reason: a lot of the criticisms are correct,” Von Rospach writes. “Apple, for the first time in over a decade, simply isn’t firing on all cylinders. Please don’t interpret that as ‘Apple is doomed’ because it’s not, but there are things it’s doing a lot less well than it could — and has. Apple’s out of sync with itself… Apple has gotten itself out of kilter and is in need of some course correction.”

“Back when I was running most of Apple’s e-mail systems for the marketing teams, I went to them and suggested that we should consider dumping the text-only part of the emails we were building, because only about 4% of users used them and it added a significant amount of work to the process of creation and testing each e-mail,” Von Rospach writes. “Their response? That it was a small group of people, but a strategic one, since it was highly biased towards developers and power users. So the two-part emails stayed — and they were right. It made no sense from a business standpoint to continue to develop these emails as both HTML at text, but it made significant strategic sense. It was an investment in keeping this key user base happy with Apple.”

“Apple, from all indications I’ve seen over the last year and with the configurations they’ve shipped with these new laptops, has forgotten this, and the product configurations seem designed by what will fit the biggest part of the user base with the fewest configuration options,” Von Rospach writes. “They’ve chopped off the edges of the bell curve — and big chunks of their key users with them.”

Tons more in the full article – very highly recommendedhere.

MacDailyNews Take: As Chuq writes, Apple is a bit off kilter, but nowhere close to being broken. We agree with all of his points; as regular readers know, we’ve voiced many similar concerns over recent years (one example from last month is here.)

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