- Apple is one of the biggest, most valuable, and most beloved tech companies in the world.
- Still, not everything the company debuted in 2018 lived up to expectations.
- We highlighted the most disappointing moments from Apple in 2018.
1. Apple hiked prices on just about everything.
Apple bumped up the starting prices of many of its most popular products in 2018, compared to 2017:
- The starting price of the newest and most affordable iPhone increased by $50.
- The starting price of the newest and most affordable Apple Watch increased by $70.
- The starting price of an iPad Pro increased by $150.
- The starting price of the MacBook Air increased by $200.
- The starting price of the Mac Mini increased by $300.
Apple creates great value in every product it makes, but the price hikes for these particular products, this year, were not justified.
2. Apple killed the iPhone SE, its smallest and most affordable iPhone.
In 2017, the cheapest iPhone you could get from Apple was the $350 iPhone SE.
In 2018, Apple removed that phone from its lineup.
Now, the cheapest iPhone you can buy is the iPhone 7, which starts at $449.
The iPhone 7 is still an incredible phone, but it’s a shame that Apple no longer makes phones as small as the iPhone SE.
3. Apple released its first HomePod speaker, which showed just how far behind it is compared to Google and Amazon.
Apple’s HomePod speaker, which debuted in February, has brilliant sound.
But there is a list of things the HomePod can’t do:
- It won’t do a great job answering random questions like rival devices
- It doesn’t work with Android phones
- It doesn’t work well with other music services besides Apple Music
- It can’t be hooked up to another device with an auxiliary cord
Keep in mind: The HomePod costs $350, while rival smart speakers cost a fraction of that.
It has a beautiful design, but the HomePod is still very much in version 1.0.
4. Apple’s September event was one of the most disappointing iPhone launches in recent memory.
Chalk it up to leaks, but Apple’s September event, which debuted three new iPhone models and a new Apple Watch, featured absolutely zero surprises, which was very un-Apple.
Yes: The names, specs and features of Apple’s new devices were leaked weeks before the event. Bloomberg accurately reported on the names of the new iPhones— XS, XS Max, and XR — and Apple blog 9to5Mac published Apple’s own marketing photos of the new iPhones and Watch, which also showed up in the keynote.
If anything, the biggest surprises were actually bad news for Apple fans: The company discontinued two fan-favorite iPhones, the iPhone 6s and iPhone SE, and it offered no update on AirPower, the wireless charging accessory it teased a year ago. Apple removed all references from AirPower from its website at the time, drawing concerns that the project had been canned, but reports now say Apple plans to release AirPower in 2019.
Overall, Apple’s September event was one of the coldest and most boring Apple events I had witnessed in quite some time.
5. The new iPhone names were terrible.
Apple in 2017 unveiled the iPhone X — pronounced “ten,” not “ex,” since it represents the 10th anniversary of the iPhone.
In 2018, Apple had an opportunity to return the iPhone naming convention to normalcy, but instead decided on three terrible names for its 2018 iPhones: the iPhone XS (pronounced “ten-ess,” not “excess”), the iPhone XS Max (“ten-ess max”) and iPhone XR (“ten-arr”).
To cut to the chase: It makes no sense to put two letters next to each other and expect customers to pronounce one of the letters as a Roman numeral.
The iPhone X was cute marketing last year to make the 10th anniversary iPhone feel special, but if Apple didn’t want to confuse people, the new phones should’ve been spelled out as “iPhone 10S” and “10R.”