From David Price's "Apple can learn an important lesson from Twitter about loyalty" posted Sunday:
For a tech journalist, there is a morbid fascination with the slow-motion car crash currently taking place at Twitter HQ. The incoming owner is discovering to his cost that loyalty, from both employees and users, takes a long time to earn and a very short time to lose.
One would guess that billionaires are at a disadvantage when it comes to grasping the nature and limitations of loyalty, given how rarely they need to call up a mate and ask for bail money or a lift to the airport at short notice. But the truth is that loyalty is both weirdly resilient and alarmingly fragile. Like so many things, loyalty runs out gradually, then very suddenly.
Apple is hardly likely to nosedive as badly as Twitter, not least because it’s run by an altogether less erratic leadership team. (It’s hard to imagine Tim Cook tanking the stock price because he couldn’t resist posting a sick meme.) But I do hope someone at Cupertino is paying attention to Twitter, because Apple is taking similar risks with its users’ loyalty, and stands to lose far more.
Apple depends on buy-in from customers far more than any of its close rivals. While other companies built their business models around advertising and data collection, or on selling hardware with the best specs or the lowest prices, Apple focused on the experience. Its products are very popular and often excellent, but more importantly, you’re buying a lifestyle too.
My take: Not Price's strongest piece. Does he really believe that Apple's business model is selling a "lifestyle"? Apparently so...
The occasionally cult-like tendencies exhibited by Apple and its fans can grate at times, but that unusually user-focused business model—which depends above all on convincing customers that Apple is cool and ethical and you’re cool and ethical for buying its products—incentivizes behavior you wouldn’t expect from other companies.
But he's right about the tech press' morbid fascination with Twitter's slow-motion car crash.