After hemorrhaging $23 billion in market value, Apple plays defense

“Apple Inc broke its silence on complaints about bending iPhones, hours after withdrawing a glitch-ridden software update as the company struggles to restore momentum to the rollout of its latest phones,” Arathy S Nair and Sam Adams report for Reuters. “‘With normal use, a bend in iPhone is extremely rare and through our first six days of sale, a total of nine customers have contacted Apple with a bent iPhone 6 Plus,’ Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller said in an email.”

“Apple shares closed down nearly 4 percent at $97.87 on Thursday, wiping out nearly $23 billion in market value,” Nair and Adams report. “Apple said its iPhones feature stainless steel and titanium inserts to reinforce high-stress locations and use the strongest glass in the smartphone industry.”

“Apple was also forced to withdraw a faulty update to its latest operating system after some users of its new phones complained of call service disruptions,” Nair and Adams report. “Apple released a new software update late on Thursday to fix the problems, which it said affected fewer than 40,000 devices. ‘I do believe this speaks to execution issues at Apple,’ said JMP Securities analyst Alex Gauna. ‘At the end of the day I believe this too shall pass, but we are noting with concern that the miscues pile up.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple has more work to do to get its house in order in software quality control.

Squatting out the iOS 8.0.1 turd atop the as-yet-unaddressed “bendygate” FUD was Microsoftian. Apple customers don’t settle for Microsoftian. Hopefully a strong message has been sent from Cook that prompts every Apple employee to up their game.

One thing Cook needs to make very sure is that quality assurance testers have ALL hardware, including the most recent models, in their possession for testing. Doubling down on secrecy at the expense of quality, if that’s part of the problem, is a crucial policy mistake that needs to be fixed immediately.

So this whole mess is the result of a hardware non-issue (likely a planted FUD attack from rivals; strike the match and watch it rage out of control) and a minor point iOS update that affected Apple’s newest iPhones and was quickly remedied.

That’s the reality. The problem for Apple is the perception. To quote Andre Agassi for Canon: “Image is everything.” Perception (as we told you would tar Maps for a long time) is not so quickly and easily remedied. Now every iPhone 6/Plus owner can look forward to idiots asking if their phone bends, if Touch ID works (also not good for Apple Pay’s rollout), or if it can make phone calls. Wonderful.

With the “bending” nonissue, we believe Apple has begun to do a effective job on addressing the usual FUD storm that greets each major product release. With the very rapid iOS 8.0.2 release, it’s obvious Apple understood the importance of quickly addressing the issue. Hopefully Apple is fully prepared for the Category 6 shitstorm of FUD that’s coming with the Apple Watch launch.

Related articles:
Apple opens testing facility to reporters, details exhaustive iPhone 6 Plus durability tests – September 25, 2014
Apple’s so-called ‘quality assurance’ manager responsible for iOS 8.0.1, was also responsible for Apple Maps – September 25, 2014
Apple releases iOS 8.0.2 – September 25, 2014
Apple’s gauntlet of five durability tests that iPhone 6 Plus passed with flying colors – September 25, 2014
Samsung, HTC, BlackBerry, and others mock ‘bendability’ of Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus – September 25, 2014
Apple: Only nine customers have complained about bent iPhone 6 Plus units – September 25, 2014
Apple CEO Tim Cook’s banana skins: U2, ‘Bendygate’ and iOS 8.0.1 – September 25, 2014
iOS 8.0.1 fiasco: Apple exec responsible for catching bugs before release has a ferocious door-slamming temper – September 24, 2014
Apple pulls iOS 8.0.1 after users report major problems – September 24, 2014
If ‘bending’ is all Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus rivals have left, they’re roadkill – September 24, 2014
SquareTrade Breakability Tests: Apple iPhone 6 earns best score ever, iPhone 6 Plus not far behind – September 24, 2014


  1. Oh my god whatever will they do this is a disa… Oh right this doesn’t amount to a hill of fscking beans. This “hemorrhage” is no more real than Bendate.

    “Struggles to restore momentum”? We’ll see you in January, chicken little dipshits.

    1. Let’s put it in perspective. First, today AAPL has already recovered more than half what it lost in market capitalization yesterday. More importantly, AAPL was trading at about $75 just 5 months ago (April). At I write, AAPL is trading at $99.82. This represents an increase in value of about one-third, or 33% , since April, just 5 months ago. Has any journalist calculated how many billions this makes? You always need to look at the big picture in investing. Those who cannot stand the heat should stay out of the kitchen.

    2. Right. Apple didn’t hemorrhage a nickel. The ONLY people that lost anything were those who sold their Apple shares yesterday and that had no connection to Bendygate, but the sellers decision process or automatic trading trigger points.

  2. If Apple was treated by the press like “Amazon or Google” then there would be no bent iPhone story at all.

    Everyone needs to remember this: Apple has destroyed the cell phone market and to some extent Microsoft. These companies are not going to go quietly. They will do, say and create bad news for Apple any way they can.

    1. I’m thinking you and I and the rest of the Apple world don’t want Apple to be treated by the press like “Amazon or Google”. We all hold Apple to a high standard and so does the press. I can guarantee you that Apple gets WAAAY more positive press about it’s products than Amazon or Google, so we need to be quiet and take our lumps when Apple messes up.

      I wish it weren’t so… I wish they were perfect… I don’t like to see my friends with Samdung devices gloat when Apple fails. But i’ll take my lumps this time and come out winning in the end. Guaranteed!!!

  3. Worth wondering whether a mad genius with OCD and a short temper would have made any difference, or if these are normal cycles of quality issues that any company may see.

    Sometimes someone’s responsible, and sometimes things just happen, but a casual and accomodating culture can foster lackadaisical performance.

    The stakes are high. $23 billion is nothing to sneeze at.

  4. Yup, no surprise here, all hype and no substance. Apple stock is taking a tumble while the newspaper stock must be going through the roof.

    If is wasn’t for Apple, Amurderca would be the laughing stock of the world. Oh wait a minute, even with Apple, Amurderca is the laughing stock of the world.

  5. When you consider all the releases and updates Apple does in the Fall … of course, it’s going to seem like a lot of “missteps” pile up all at once. It’s bound to happen. Especially since anything “Apple” gets spread across the blog-o-shpere like a wildfire.

    The only truly significant issue so far was iOS 8.0.1, which affected 40,000 devices or about 0.03% of iPhone 6’s that shipped, assuming they’ve reached over 12 million sales. That is a VERY tiny fraction and only with Apple would anyone think that was a massive problem and complete failure.

    1. “Especially since anything “Apple” gets spread across the blog-o-shpere like a wildfire”

      That’s at least partly Apple’s own doing. They go for the big reveal, upping the hype, etc. But there’s sadly a lot of negative sentiment, much of it unwarranted or based on falsehoods, and if there’s something people love doing it’s tearing down whoever’s popular when misfortune hits them (and it’s worse for Apple, since people loved tearing them down even when they were the underdog).

  6. It’s one thing for testers not to have the hardware prior to launch for security, but after that they should get it straight away, and if they can’t test they shouldn’t release.

  7. I’m sure the recent fuss, and the linking of a non-issue (bendgate) that affects idiots who buy a thin, light device because it’s thin and light then immediately forget this and expect it to have the properties of an inch-thick solid slab of iron with a minor hiccup (8.0.1) is NOTHING to do with the people who control certain media outlets wanting to push down Apple stock prices so they can buy up a load of shares cheap then wait for the storm to pass and ejoy a big payout. Nothing at all.

  8. “Hopefully they’re fully prepared for what’s coming with the Apple Watch launch.” They better because the epic sh$t storm that is going to greet the watch will have had many months to build. I’m not saying the product is bad. I’m saying that everyone who has a vested interest in throwing FUD at Apple will have had months to prepare. The launch will not just be a test of Apple’s ability to bring a new product to market and marketing that product but s test for their PR department.

  9. Jesus Christ MDN get your shit together and quit posting garbage like this. The stock market as a whole was down yesterday. Google and Microsoft were both down over 2%. As of this morning Apple is up over 1%. Apple would have been down at least 2% no matter what yesterday,

  10. Quoting a guy talking about image who wore a wig to play tennis isn’t a good point. Hmm, I thought it was about quality product, not image.
    I agree the perception of a problem is a problem, but suddenly becoming a PR machine that they’ve never been will also look like they’re afraid.

  11. Seriously 23 billion – a blip to Apple. With all this bullshit going around about Apple you would think they killed someone. any ass that puts that big phone in their tight pants is asking for it. How dumb can they be ?. Apple still have the best system and product in the market .Like it not thats the truth

  12. Excellent take, MDN. Apple must get beyond their famous arrogance that has led to these stumbles. The notion that the company is so great that nothing can hurt it is a very dangerous one when their competitors are so very capable of making the most of the slightest misstep and knowing how the media will have such a field day with.

    Numbskulls on television “news” reports breathlessly describing some hiccup as a crisis as they all want to see the company join the ranks of all the others as “ordinary.” Tim doesn’t seem to recognize this nor has he shown any sign that he is at all prepared to deal with it because he too supports the continued culture of arrogance

    Is there anyone at Cupertino who can lead a transformation in the culture? If there was anyone, would Tim listen? If not, then …

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