Research conducted through a study funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts shows that Apple customers are not clear on certain basic principles of a market economy, as well as other issues of a personal nature.
According to the research – which included interviews, surveys, and a review of writings published on the Internet – conducted by economic sociologists at Carnegie Mellon University, Apple customers were unaware of the laws of supply and demand and the market forces that set pricing and product life cycles.
Despite their startling ignorance, however, Apple customers do not lack for bravado about their supposed expertise in Apple’s business. At parties, on the Internet and in confessionals, they ply their pet proposals for Apple’s “sure-fire” means of supplanting Microsoft.
Chief researcher Anthony Fischetti highlighted several faulty talking points that he says have been endemic over the last several years.
“It’s unclear whether Apple customers are being willfully ignorant or are just stupid,” Fischetti said, flipping through several charts. “However, these two frequently-used statements are emblematic of their patently incorrect understanding of the technology business. Or, indeed, any business.”
- “That highly popular Apple device that is flying off the shelves costs too much!”
- “I bought a laptop from Apple and they screwed me when they introduced a faster laptop eight months later!“
“These are what we in the research field like to describe as ‘noise’. Not statistical noise, which would be the presence of outliers, but noise in the sense of blather from someone who doesn’t have the slightest idea what they’re talking about.”
But more disturbing than those who quibble over market dynamics, Fischetti’s research found, are the Apple customers who look to adhere to their Platonian ideal of “a perfect Apple.”
“For these individuals,” Frischetti said, “Apple has become a god – supposedly flawless and divine. And when the company shows that it is forced to act on the same plane of reality that the rest of us do, their belief system is shattered.”
- “The battery on my Apple product doesn’t last forever!”
- “My Apple product gets scratched when I put it in my trunk with my tire iron! And then beat it with a brick! And then, yeah, OK, I rubbed it with sandpaper… and… then lit it on fire.”
“We believe that these Apple customers have misdirected mother and/or father issues,” Frischetti said.
“Or they may just be loser whiners. I, um, haven’t finished that last scatter graph yet.”
Frischetti said that he and his fellow researchers are applying for a follow-up grant to determine why so many Apple customers smell so bad.