CPU Throttling -- A Perfect Scandal for Right to Repair

Apple is putting a lot of stock in the ability of their PR department to manage their latest scandal.   

It takes a Machiavellian Genius to come up with the preposterous excuse that their latest cpu-throttling scandal was done for purely noble reasons.  Wow.  Even if this were a new blunder for Apple it would be a whopper.  But Apple has a long history of deception and manipulation.  Their credibility is shot.  

Three Big Examples:

Jailbreaking (2010) – Apple actively prevented users from downloading apps from outside the Apple Store.  See https://www.wired.com/2010/07/feds-ok-iphone-jailbreaking/ .Apple had taken the position was they needed to control the “end-user experience”, which the US Copyright Office slapped down stating clearly that the end user experience is not theirs to control. 

Error 53 (2016) – Apple bricked phones that had been repaired outside of their control using a software update to check for pairing of the original home button to the glass.  Once exposed by an outraged reporter at The Guardian they cooked up a claim of their intent to protect user security, (whopper)  and then another claim that the specific software update was not meant for distribution and was accidentally released (whopper)  Under consumer and legal pressure – they rapidly backed down and managed to un-do the damage done.   

CPU Throttling (2017) – Having learned that their expert PR Machine can pivot around a significant crisis as proven by the Error 53 scandal,  but having learned nothing about consumer trust, Apple has pushed ahead with another deceptive and destructive update slowing the phone performance rather than suggesting a battery replacement..  

The only plausible beneficiary in this farce is Apple – as their marketing machine is always quick to recommend a new phone for all issues.  If they were sincere about helping consumers extend the life of older models, they had plenty of more obvious options. 

Apple is clearly pushing hard with all the money at their command to manipulate media attention and direct it towards debate about the merits of battery replacement, or the costs of replacement batteries, rather than their pernicious use of software updates to alter product performance without the permission of the owner.     

It remains to be seen if the sunlight of scandal will be in the minds of legislators in just a few weeks when 16 states with Right to Repair bills decide the time has come to end consumer abuse.   

For my part, I think they created the right scandal at precisely the right time.