June 18, 2024

But it wasn’t all roses for Apple this previous 12 months. The corporate had some huge failures, which pissed off basic shoppers and the longtime Apple devoted alike. Listed here are Apple’s greatest misses of 2023.

#5 A laughably complicated Apple Pencil Lineup

Many have complained that Apple’s lineup of gadgets has develop into more and more convoluted in recent times, and this turns into very evident when trying on the 2023 Apple Pencil line of styli for the iPad. In October, Apple launched the third-generation Apple Pencil, dubbed the “Apple Pencil (USB-C).” Nevertheless, it saved the first- and second-generation Apple Pencils on sale, too, which led to widespread buyer confusion.

Apple now sells three pencils: the latest Apple Pencil (USB-C), essentially the most highly effective Apple Pencil (2nd technology), and the oldest Apple Pencil (1st technology).

Which do you have to get? Who is aware of. The pricing construction is all around the map. The most recent USB-C Pencil prices $79, whereas the oldest Pencil prices $99. So worth doesn’t work as a information to guage which is the newest and biggest. Issues get extra confounding: The perfect mannequin, the Apple Pencil (2nd technology), which prices $129, isn’t suitable with some iPads. In the meantime, the oldest Pencil truly has higher options than the latest USB-C Pencil, corresponding to stress sensitivity.

Worse, if you happen to purchase the improper Apple Pencil for the iPad you may have, a few of its options received’t work. 9to5Mac took a deep dive into the befuddling mess right here. No surprise they titled their article “The Apple Pencil lineup is lastly as complicated because the iPad lineup.”

#4 An iPad that was MIA

Talking of iPads, there have been no new ones in 2023 in any respect. Apple’s iPad and iPad Professional lineup hasn’t been up to date since October 2022. Its iPad Air hasn’t been up to date since March 2022. And its iPad mini hasn’t been up to date since September 2021.

In different phrases, it’s been so long as two years since some iPads obtained any love from Apple. However can iPad followers actually be too shocked {that a} new iPad was a no-show in 2023? In recent times, the iPad has felt like an afterthought—a product with no clear function—particularly as Macs have gotten thinner and lighter and iPhones have gotten bigger.

I believe my colleague Harry McCracken summed it up finest in his article “Why the iPad stays a wonderful disappointment.” Apple simply doesn’t appear to know what it needs the iPad to be anymore. Right here’s hoping that the corporate figures it out in 2024.

#3 A irritating USB-C rollout

Certainly one of Apple’s greatest hits in 2023 was lastly including USB-C to the iPhone. If solely its USB-C rollout for its different merchandise had been as easy. Alongside the USB-C iPhone 15 sequence rollout in September, Apple additionally upgraded the second-generation AirPods Professional to ship with a USB-C charging case…and that’s it.

The AirPods 2nd technology and the AirPods third technology nonetheless ship with a Lightning port on their charging case, which means individuals who plunk down $129 or $169 ($179 for the MagSafe Lightning case), respectively, for these earbuds this vacation season are going to be caught with outdated tech. And the $549 AirPods Max was additionally denied USB-C, too. Plus, Apple’s pc peripherals, together with its Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad, and Magic Keyboard, have thus far been denied USB-C charging as properly, which means that going into 2024, many Apple merchandise are nonetheless utilizing a decades-old charging expertise although its iPhones have lastly moved on.

#2 A scarcity of AI imaginative and prescient

If there was one overarching pattern in tech this 12 months it was synthetic intelligence, popularized by AI chatbots like OpenAI’s ChatGPT and generative AI platforms like Midjourney and Dall-e 2. However it wasn’t simply these comparatively small firms that have been pushing AI innovation forward this 12 months. Tech giants from Microsoft to Adobe to Amazon to Google additionally jumped onto the AI practice. One which didn’t, not less than publicly? Apple.

To be clear, Apple’s {hardware} and software program have been utilizing AI processes for years, because of a number of machine studying options constructed into its chips and working programs. However in terms of generative AI expertise being revealed in 2023, one can’t assist however think about that Apple was broadsided. I imply, ChatGPT makes Siri look completely archaic now, and all the foremost AI innovation appears to be occurring outdoors the confines of Cupertino.

A report from Bloomberg says that Apple was certainly “caught flat-footed” by the ChaptGPT-led AI increase and is shortly attempting to rectify that by engaged on an AI chatbot internally dubbed “AppleGPT.” Nonetheless, if Apple is enjoying catch-up, it dangers shedding the benefit of trying like a tech chief within the public’s eyes. 

#1 A disgraceful 8GB of RAM in “professional” laptops

Apple’s greatest miss of 2023 was the one which enraged clients who have been shelling out as much as $1,800 for an Apple laptop computer. In October, Apple revealed the brand new 14” and 16” MacBook Execs with the highly effective new M3, M3 Professional, and M3 Max chips. Because the “Professional” within the title suggests, these machines include the newest tech and are constructed for professionals. However a few of them additionally lack one of the basic items laptops—professional or not—require in 2023: enough RAM.

The 14” MacBook Professional with the M3 chip, which begins at both $1,599 or $1,799, comes with a paltry 8GB of RAM. And RAM improve prices begin at a staggering $200.

In 2023, no laptop computer that prices $1,000 or extra ought to include something lower than 16GB of RAM. But a few of Apple’s professional laptops and all of its shopper laptops include simply 8GB of RAM as normal. Such low quantities of RAM in laptops that promote at this worth in 2023 is ridiculous, and even typically Apple-friendly publications like Macworld, have been nothing however scathing of their condemnation of it, writing, “That is pure company greed from the world’s greatest and richest expertise firm, and as Apple clients, we shouldn’t stand for it.”

Let’s hope Apple offers their RAM choices a significant improve within the new 12 months.