Over this weekend there’s a lot of hullabaloo in Australia over Apple’s advertising scheme for their new iPad 3. See, Australia is one of the few countries where the LTE standard is being widely deployed, and commonlg LTE is referred to as 4G. While that’s not technically correct, it is what the local networks there are billing as 4G.
Semantics aside, the local Apple fans there are making a huge fuss because they bought the iPad 3 without knowing that it wouldn’t work on their 4G networks – only those in America will work properly, and until Australia supports the 1700Mhz standard, their tablets are stuck at 3G speeds.
But that’s still acceptable, right? Even 3G is enough for Video-On-Demand services, but its a different landscape over there. 3G towers are widely deployed in the Outback, giving good signal even to the kangaroos hopping about the place. Still, buyers who were unsatisfied complained to the advertising comission about the 4G moniker. As things stand now, buyers and early adopters who even bought the tablets in the States are offered a refund by Apple, and all those customers have been send e-mails concerning the offer.
But what’s really interesting about the whole escapade? Under the reign of Steve Jobs, the company wouldn’t have made such a stupid blunder. The Apple that Jobs pushed to the public was meticulous and had great attention to detail, but so far has failed twice to meet public expectations. I hope for their sake that this isn’t the first in a line of mistakes that will eventually snowball the company back to its pre-1997 state of delirium.