In a post from a few days ago that could just have easily been written at any point over the past seven years, Mashable proclaimed that Apple might be working on a thinner iPhone. No shit. New things are better than old things. Upgrades are made with better parts and built to be more efficient. This will happen every. single. year.
Granted, as a former tech blogger myself I’m prone to an extra dose of disdain, but it’s also how I know that we’ve trapped ourselves in a toxic echo chamber in which tech writers are trained to see the words “Apple” or “iPhone” as a guaranteed set of clicks. Because, for the most part, it’s true. They’ve lived through enough Apple events by now to see what works; they’ve perfected their respective, traffic-guaranteed formulas. This is where we get such tried and true favorites as: Rumor roundups. How to stream today’s Apple event. Liveblogs. Why Apple didn’t announce that thing we thought they were going to announce. Why these are the best iPhones yet. Death—is it coming for you? Analysts say, yes!
Even today, with what was unequivocally an awful, boring announcement swollen with unnecessary fanfare, bloggers lost their shit. Ten minutes were spent demonstrating copy/paste on an iPad. Someone played an off-brand version of Frogger for another five. Tim Cook showed off features that Windows machines have been doing for years. Jony Ive narrated design videos that stretched on for days. And there was an entire section devoted to a goddamn stick.
And people (or at least, the tiny but loud coterie of people sent to chronicle Apple in its auditorium) couldn’t get enough. For every inane announcement, thunderous applause followed.
No one wants to pay $100 for a pencil. No one wants to rent a hotel on their TV. No one wants to buy clothing on their TV. And no one wants to use Siri—ever. In any capacity. And yet! Applause. Constant, incessant applause. And posts and tweets and think pieces and all of it meaningless because all of it has already been written year, after year, after year. Real, actual insight is, for the most part, dead.
Or this post from BGR that touts this newest update as the “best update yet.” Much like this post from Gizmodo (where, disclaimer, I used to work) that states: “The new iPhone 6S is probably going to look almost exactly like the iPhone 6, but it’ll be better.” Of course it will.
It is always going to be the best update yet. New phones are always going to be better than old phones. They will always be sharper, faster, shinier and it’s absurd of us to act delighted—surprised even—every time Tim Cook brings something on stage that isn’t an actual piece of human feces.
But judging by the response to the Apple Pencil, who’s to say that even literal shit wouldn’t be met with cheers.