iPhone4- Lessons Learned (?)

It is with much interest that I read the article on how Apple needs an attitude adjustment. The writer brings to light some very interesting thoughts on how culture and persona can change over time.

A few insights gained here:

1. Persona can change. Attitudes change. For better or for worse.  
Apple used to be the underdog. They were all about ‘sticking it to the Man’. What happened? Well besides the fact that they created a huge market from scratch for music, smart phones and mobile computing, not much ;-). However it is interesting to note that profiles and personas change. Deal with it.  A company is made of people. And people change. In fact, if your attitude or likes/dislikes have not changed over the past decade or so, you might want to introspect. They say change is mandatory but growth is optional :-).

When we work on projects, we must make sure our target audience persona is the same as we *think* it is. A successful product must constantly change because it’s audience and the market is changing. Those who refuse to change must pay the cost over time (irrelevance, financial loss, lost market share and brand perception dips to name a few).

2. How, on God’s green earth, did Apple make such a blunder with their “integrated” antenna and poor reception issues. The web is swamped with  complaints and hate mail. Apple is considered to be one of the best when it comes to user experience and design. Did they not test their product outside of their comfort zone? Was any field research done? What about testing with different demographics of users and even those who are left handed vs. right (the antenna issues are more pronounced when held with a left hand).

The moment a company starts taking their user base for granted or flippantly dismisses complaints, that moment, my friends, is of grave concern.

Thoughts? Am I off the mark or do you concur? Let’s talk!

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