With those new iPhone 5c cases, clearly someone at Apple fell asleep at the wheel

“I was enjoying the iPhone 5c web page where you can experiment with the phone/case color combos,” Ken Segall writes for Observatory. “It’s very nicely done.”

“Suddenly I was aghast — a chunk of the word ‘iPhone’ can be seen through one of the holes in the case,” Segall writes. “While some will say “big deal,” those who love Apple’s taste and values will feel like they got punched in the stomach. Clearly someone fell asleep at the wheel. It not only looks like a mistake — it looks ugly. And ugly has no place in Apple’s world. ”

iPhone 5c caseSegall writes, “You can either write it off as a momentary lapse, or you can take it as terrible warning sign. Or maybe this just proves that while Jony Ive is in charge of hardware design and software interface, he doesn’t get invited to the accessory meetings.”

Much more about the positives and negatives from Apple’s September 10th event in the full article here.

John Brownlee writes for FastCompany, “Apple is known for its rigorous, iterative testing process. For every product Apple releases, it likes to brag a hundred products get thrown into the bin because some small, niggling detail was wrong. How, then, could the iPhone 5C get manufactured in bulk without anyone at Apple ever actually putting one on an iPhone 5C to see how it looked? Because that’s the only explanation that makes sense to me considering what the iPhone 5C case looks like when used with an actual iPhone 5C.”

Brownlee writes, “Here’s my specific complaint. On the back of every iPhone, Apple prints some text… If the iPhone 5C case merely hid this text, I’d have no problem with the design. Nor would I have much of an issue if a little window had been left open for it, or at least the word “iPhone.” They could even have moved the polkadot grid to the top of the case instead of the bottom and I’d be fine. What is mystifying to me is the way the polkadot grid of the iPhone 5C case half-obscures, half-exposes all of this text. It looks terrible, like a Playskool fishnet stocking that has been sloppily pulled over a sign.”

“So when you put on an iPhone 5C case, your iPhone doesn’t say iPhone on the back. The ‘iP’ and ‘e’ are obscured, as is the very top of the ‘h.’ So instead of ‘iPhone,’ it says ‘non,'” Brownlee writes. “Which is exactly what some token Frenchman working within Apple should have said when he saw this thing actually pulled onto an iPhone 5C for the first time.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Jobs would have caught this one, too.

Apple’s fanatical attention to detail needs work and vigilance lest it be lost forever.

Attention to even the most minute detail is why Apple stands apart. Lose that and you’ve lost it all.

It’s a slippery slope, Apple. Pay attention!

Here’s a 5-minute quick and dirty revision we whipped up. Compare it to Apple’s half-assery:

iPhone 5s case as revised by MacDailyNews
iPhone 5s case as revised by MacDailyNews

(Of course, there is additional text and FCC info on the bottom of real iPhones that would need to be addressed, but we’re not getting paid to fix Apple’s mistakes and you get the idea anyway. If we spent another whole 5 minutes on it, it would be better than Apple’s case currently.)


      1. Actually, he is using the word correctly, given the context. At one time, “gay” meant colorful, and happy, and what he meant was that there are too much colors, and looks “sloppy”. I disagree with most of the things he says, and frankly, he can be a major dick at times, but, he used this word correctly, and it had no intent of being homophobic.

    1. The worst thing of all is this (listen you all out there): to catch that kind of stupid mistake you don’t need someone of, rest in peace, Steve Jobs stature. The imbeciles designing it should have caught/done it!!!!

      That level of detail is not a level of detail!!! It is a no brainer. What were they thinking???

      “Apple’s fanatical attention to detail needs work and vigilance lest it be lost forever.”

      It is not Apple’s fanatical attention, it was Jobs’ fanatical attention!!

      And please understand, it is something that DOES NOT need vigilance or policing, anyone with a little bit of marketing brain should be able to get it!!!

    1. The majority of Apple fans are wondering: of all the important things that Apple needed to highlight, how pathetic is it that they chose to show off an overpriced silicone sieve? Gaudy colors and all…

    2. I don’t like silicone cases. They feel cheap, and tend to add significant weight and thickness. Actually, I don’t like to cover my Apple devices with cases, period. So it’s definitely “optional” for me… 🙂

    3. Agree. Inane distriabe. It is a protective cover. People already _know_ it is an iPhone. Who cares if the small print on the back side is obscured by an optional cover?

      This is moronic. Do people appreciate the substantive work Apple does? Does anyone know how hard it is to do what Apple _routinely_ does to make and improve its products? (Only to see your best ideas ripped off by competitors — since the legal system moves at a glaciall pace — so you are rushed to do it all over again?)

      You are belittling a brilliant concept and execution by harping on an inconsequential item you disagree with.

      Well, bully for you. All of you.

  1. A wonderful opportunity for someone to create a set of stickers with just the right tints and gloss to invisibly hide that text. Even Apple could do that and add the stickers to the case.

  2. Amazing. When I identify Apple shortcomings, I get raked over the coals with snide immature fanboy slander. But now even MDN has realized that Apple is not perfect, in fact, it’s not executing anywhere nearly as well as it did just 3 years ago.

    Apple DOES need to get its mojo back. If Mac users aren’t pleasantly surprised this autumn with a plethora of impressive updates, all-new products like Thunderbolt peripherals and displays, etc, then it is safe to say that Cook’s tenure overall has been one of retrenchment rather than bold forward-thinking leadership. He’s had all the resources on the planet to wow us, and all the time anyone ever needed to get it done, and instead all the iPhone hype over the last 6 months has led to one great iPhone 5S, one underwhelming and overpriced 5C, the inexplicable continuation of the iPhone 4S with Dock connector, and yet more delays and silence on the Mac front. No wonder investors aren’t impressed. The richest company in the world should be more adept. Cook needs to make something besides >$4 billion Aerobie offices.

    Move Cook back to COO where he belongs.

    1. You’re not a trailblazer. MDN has noted Apple’s mistakes plenty of times in the past. So have other people. You are therefore a liar and not a victim.

      I myself have a few complaints against the doings of Apple, but they may just happen to not coincide with your’s 100% of the time. I hope that’s okay.

      Moreover, your cliched use of the word “fanboy” could lead one to believe that you are more than likely being paid by the likes of Google or Samsung to pretend to be an Apple supporter who is now disillusioned with Apple. Such ploys are transparent.

    2. Um, is anyone really going to notice a portion of the iPhone logo showing through, or will they notice the symmetry of the circles more? I’m going with the symmetry.

      Again, if this is all people can find to complain about the new iPhones, then Apple has done very, very well.

      1. I noticed–immediately. Not a big deal for any other manufacturer, but for Apple, noticeable. I’m not a fan of the holes, anyway–major pocket lint catchers. Luckily, I am sure third parties will come out with much better cases.

      1. Did not the first iphone start with a 4 gb version? The 4S is still way faster and more capable than the 1st gen iphone so I do not understand your complaint if Apple offers it.

        1. Agreed. The iPhone 4S is the bottom tier, entry-level iPhone. Why would Apple give it any additional bells and whistles when it’s mostly just a means to attract customers who can’t afford the extra couple hundred dollars to get one of the premium iPhones. Besides, it’s the same sales model Apple has used for years (with great success).

    3. Mike, the Mac Pros are coming. They just haven’t set a date. I can’t wait to order them. Your comments about fanboys are, well they’re fanboys what do you expect? MDN is actually objective sometimes. Surprisingly. Though not very often. Never let these things keep you from being objective. Never let anyone push you around. Never. Otherwise you’ll just be a pussy. As for the 4 S, well they certainly are getting a lot of mileage out of that phone. Nothing wrong with that if people want to buy it. Although I certainly thought that it would be gone by now. Especially with the dock connector.

      1. the Mac Pros are going to be so expensive very few can afford them. They still need to do a headless mac for the consumer market. The Mac mini cant be expanded. They need a mac pro mini or lite or something that would be in the price range of the imac but no screen.

        1. “And do what? Fill in that one circle cutout?”

          Yes. See MDN’s example above.

          Making all of the holes Apple logos would not only be incredibly gauche, it wouldn’t solve the issue at all. You should apply to Apple’s current accessories team – you’d be perfect for the job.

          I expect better of Apple.

    1. Funny…as if you or anyone else outside of Apple’s inner circle knows what Steve Jobs or Johnny Ives would say/do. SJ had a rather unique eye for aesthics and detail. which he refined, especially in the last years of his life. And now he’s gone. Meanwhile, Apple moves on and continues to create great products. Personally, I don’t think partially hiding a word will make or break this product. But then again…I’m not SJ. 🙂

      1. Did someone say that this oversight would “make or break this product”?

        With all that can be observed about Jony Ive’s minute attention to detail, it is reasonable to think that, no, he would not be okay with this. Nor would Steve Jobs have been.

        One needn’t be in Apple’s inner circle or otherwise a mindreader to understand this. Like it or not.

  3. I saw that yesterday on the keynote. I couldn’t believe it.

    On a related note, this whole hullabaloo over the iPhone 5c reminds of the complaints after Apple released the iPod mini. Everyone hated the colors, the design, and complained that it would cannibalize the sales of the regular iPod. We all know what really happened.

      1. Yes, replaced by the iPod nano, which was initially available in just black and white and then moved on to be available in multiple colors. That was followed by the iPod nano (fat edition) which I believe is probably the shortest lived version. That being said, I have a product (red) version and it still lives on.

    1. This ranks right up there with Benjamin Franklin’s fluid model of electric current, forcing us to explain to generations of puzzled college freshmen why his “positive” and “negative” charges, seemingly the wrong way round, are “just” arbitrary labels

        1. The brain controls all the autonomous functions in your body, including the trigger to sweat which cools your body (and by extension, your blood).

          Additionally, you lose most of the heat from your head… which is that case that surrounds your brain. Aristotle wasn’t far off… especially living such a long time ago.

      1. Benjamin Franklin had no way to know which way electricity flowed. When he picked “positive” and “negative,” he had a 50-50 chance of getting it wrong. And he got it wrong.

  4. Details matter. Attention paid to details gives the impression that the bigger “stuff” was handled. Attention to detail provides a level of comfort in knowing that they had enough time to get to the details.

      1. The world rejoiced because Ive and Jobs overthrew the unending “beige box” model for good.

        Fashion crept into the Stalinist world of computers, and former commissars began to entertain self-doubts.

        Competing box makers morphed into fashionista copycats.

        Thus was born a new era, with just one clear leader out of the wilderness of bland coherence: Apple.

        That trend has continued uninterrupted, since then. On any random day, one may hear a clarion call heralding new leadership in technology, but sadly and all too often, it collapses from the accumulated force of yawning.

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