Sunday, August 15, 2010

iPhone 4 Considered Harmful

Apple's packaging is always designed to be a part of the product experience. Minimalism in volume and package contents are clearly among the design goals. So, when I received my new iPhone 4 I was unsurprised, if not unimpressed, that they'd managed to make the box even smaller than the iPhone 3GS's container.


The iPhone's diminuitive box, photographed by its former contents


Among the sparse contents of the new box are two pamphlets: "Finger Tips" which is a quick start guide for the uninitiated and the iPhone 4 Product Information Guide which is a vehicle for Apple's legal team to set out the various advisory messages to help support Apple's eventual refusal to cover, under warranty, a phone that's been cleaned with concentrated sulphuric acid or taken deep sea diving.

In addition are the warnings and disclaimers intended, to the extent allowed by law, to indemnify Apple against lawsuits arising from use or abuse the the iPhone. For example, there is a section saying that using the Maps application to navigate is a bad idea (which stops short of saying "...for entertainment purposes only"). And, further on, the intrepid reader with either excellent vision or a handy magnifier will find this:


Discontinue use of iPhone and consult a physician if you experience headaches, blackouts, seizures, convulsion, eye or muscle twitching, loss of awareness, involuntary movement, or disorientation. To reduce risk of headaches, blackouts, seizures, and eyestrain, avoid prolonged use, hold iPhone some distance from your eyes, use iPhone in a well lit room, and take frequent breaks.

When I read it I was a little disoriented about time and place having flashbacks to reading drug package inserts (thankfully, unlike some pharmaceuticals, Apple did not suggest that the iPhone 4 may cause sudden death). However I now have an insight into the "mistake" that Apple made vis-à-vis the iPhone's famous antenna troubles.

Wake up people! It was a red herring! Apple distracted you from the real problem with the iPhone 4, it's going to fry your brain! Is it the "Retina Display"? Maybe it's something they had to put in there to make Face Time work. I don't know, but I do know that Apple is more sly than people can imagine. That "antenna problem" which is a non-problem and most sane people figured that out from about 15 minutes after hearing about it, is a diversion!

So, if you have an iPhone 4, watch out! It's going to... err... I feel dizzy suddenly... Things are going black... I can't see the keyboard to dial 911... Voice Command activate!

(The text from the iPhone 4 Product Information Guide quoted above is completely accurate, but quoted out of context to provide an opportunity to write a humorous blog post. The actual humor-value of this post will vary depending on the user. You may experience boredom, contempt, blurred vision or hives reading this post. If you do, discontinue reading and seek advice from your physician.)

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