Has Apple fallen off their tree?

Apple announcing the iPhone X during their latest keynote presentation.

Apple, Inc. has evolved into a brand that all have come to know, but students fall on various ends of the spectrum regarding their feelings toward the powerhouse. Almost every year since 2007, Apple has introduced a new model of the iPhone, each proving to be more technologically advanced than the last. In today’s innovative society, people barely have time to appreciate the technological advances of their iPhone before Apple features (new) updates.

The tech giant recently introduced two new models, the iPhone 8 and the iPhone X — a 10th anniversary special edition — with even more advancements to cater to users’ desires. Both models were designed to support wireless charging, but still have the ability to charge with a lightning cable. The iPhone X also stands apart from every other model due to the fact that it has no home button, and in order to unlock the phone consumers use Face ID instead of Touch ID.

Face ID is a recognition system that compares two facial images and determines how similar they are. The owner scans his or her face to the phone’s system, similar to how Touch ID recognizes a fingerprint.

Senior Ava O’Brien has been a loyal Apple customer ever since the first generation iPhone days. Every year she has traded in her current phone in order to upgrade to the latest model — except for this year.

“I don’t think I will get the new model [iPhone X] this year,” O’Brien said. “After upgrading to iPhone 7 Plus last year I realized the inconveniences of the latest technology outweigh the benefits.”

Last fall, Apple dropped the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. The models had several new features, but the most controversial was the removal of the headphone jack. Many users, including O’Brien, had difficulty adjusting to the new reality of iPhones.

“I found it extremely frustrating,” O’Brien said. “Every time I wanted to listen to music, I would realize that I forgot my headphone adapter. I still can’t understand why Apple thought it was a good idea to remove the headphone jacks.”

Despite whatever controversy the absent headphone jack may have caused, it hasn’t deterred iPhone users to give up on the brand.

“We’re in an Apple world now,” O’Brien said. “Everyone wants the newest and latest gadget and Apple has done a really good job of providing that to consumers.”

On the other end of the spectrum, junior Reid Arno has steered clear of making any Apple purchases.

“Apple is really no different than their competitors; it’s not enough to sway me,” Arno said. “I believe they produce an incredibly friendly interface that has immersed people and prevented them from moving to another form of product, but that’s all.”

Arno noted the improved features that accompany each latest model might just be a scheme for Apple to make more money.

“People certainly buy it [Apple products] most of the time over other brands,” Arno said. “Apple and society make it seem as though the previous product is obsolete rather than the new product actually being better from a technical perspective. They keep making improvements so often because it makes them massive amounts of money.”

Senior Reilly Diaz believes Apple’s popularity among society is largely a result of the name they have built for themselves.

“The Apple name carries more weight than the actual product,” Diaz said. “Since they have been the forerunner for so many years, we have come to believe that they are the best, but many Apple users have only been Apple users, so there is an unfair advantage.”

There are several other phones such as the Google Android and Samsung Galaxy, which are similar to the iPhone but marketed at a more affordable price. Yet, Apple still remains on top as a strong competitor in the industry.

“I think I’m used to Apple; I wouldn’t say loyal,” Diaz said. “The only reason I continue to buy Apple products is because if you have multiple, the way the platforms are set up, you can use these products in an integrated fashion. If I were to switch to using an Android then the connection of contacts, messages, and emails would all be lost on my computer.”

Diaz has no plan to abandon the company anytime soon. However, if Apple continues to raise prices, he may be forced to switch.

“I hope Apple doesn’t go much further [in increasing prices] for the sake of my own wallet,” Diaz said. “I don’t really believe that paying $1,000 for a phone is worth it. I understand it is something we all use by far the most in our daily lives, but there are less expensive products out there for just as good of quality.”

Not everyone agrees that the prices for the new phones are outrageous.

“I don’t think it is an unfair price,” Arno said. “Apple sells premium phones for premium prices; nothing is unreasonable about that.”

Society is one that is heavily dependent on technology. Regardless of where the prices may fall, technology will always have a market, especially among USD’s student body. As the leading brand in cellular devices, Apple still has a loyal customer base to support whatever its next endeavor  may be — for now, at least.

Taryn Beaufort | Opinion Editor | The USD Vista