Jobs’ Full FailMe Email Surfaces

By on August 6, 2008 at 9:42 AM.

Jobs’ Full FailMe Email Surfaces

Yesterday we gave you a taste of Stevo’s apologetic internal email to his troops regarding the mess that is MobileMe. As you recall, Jobs essentially states that Apple screwed the pooch in rushing the service out when it was most certainly not ready for prime time. The email has since been leaked in its entirety and provides an interesting insight into Jobs’ internal apology. Yes, leaked and internal are both in italics. Why? As has been suggested, this is a really great way to indirectly apologize to customers without having to make public statements and go through traditional media outlets. We’re not saying this email was leaked intentionally but… Ok, maybe we are.

Team,

The launch of MobileMe was not our finest hour.  There are several things we could have done better:

– MobileMe was simply not up to Apple’s standards – it clearly needed more time and testing.

– Rather than launch MobileMe as a monolithic service, we could have launched over-the-air syncing with iPhone to begin with, followed by the web applications one by one – Mail first, followed 30 days later (if things went well with Mail) by Calendar, then 30 days later by Contacts.

– It was a mistake to launch MobileMe at the same time as iPhone 3G, iPhone 2.0 software and the App Store.  We all had more than enough to do, and MobileMe could have been delayed without consequence.

We are taking many steps to learn from this experience so that we can grow MobileMe into a service that our customers will love.  One step that I can share with you today is that the MobileMe team will now report to Eddy Cue, who will lead all of our internet services – iTunes, the App Store and, starting today, MobileMe.  Eddy’s new title will be Vice President, Internet Services and he will now report directly to me.

The MobileMe launch clearly demonstrates that we have more to learn about Internet services.  And learn we will.  The vision of MobileMe is both exciting and ambitious, and we will press on to make it a service we are all proud of by the end of this year.

Steve

We have to wonder: Do you think Steve currently uses MobileMe himself? How about the rest of the Apple higher ups?

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Jobs Jumps on the MobileMe FAIL Bus

By on August 5, 2008 at 12:48 PM.

Jobs Jumps on the MobileMe FAIL Bus

It looks like an internal email from El Jobso to Apple employees it quite telling with regards to the current MobileMe situation. What is the MobileMe situation? It’s not good. We’re sure you’ve ready about the many, many problems that many, many people are having with the service. You’ve also likely read that people are dropping their MobileMe accounts left and right. Apparently Apple has noticed a bit of an issue as well and Jobs took it upon himself to circulate a “my bad” to his troops. In the note, Jobs acknowledges that Apple went about it all wrong. As opposed to dropping the unproven service in its entirety to coincide with the launch of the iPhone 3G, Apple might have considered a gradual piecemeal release starting with iPhone sync and then slowly adding additional services. From El Capitán:

It was a mistake to launch MobileMe at the same time as iPhone 3G, iPhone 2.0 software and the App Store. We all had more than enough to do, and MobileMe could have been delayed without consequence.

Well, you know what they say about hindsight. Apple has hardly given up on the service of course and it is reportedly working very hard to remedy the situation by year’s end. The MobileMe team has gone through a bit of a reorganization and all internet services including iTunes, the App Store and MobileMe will now be headed up by Eddy Cue, formerly the VP of iTunes. It would be hard to argue that Cue hasn’t done a bang up job with iTunes and we expect he will fair just fine in his new role. Jobs closes the email by saying:

The MobileMe launch clearly demonstrates that we have more to learn about Internet services and learn we will. The vision of MobileMe is both exciting and ambitious, and we will press on to make it a service we are all proud of by the end of this year.

Fair enough.

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More trouble for Apple’s MobileMe service

By on July 21, 2008 at 8:43 AM.

More trouble for Apple’s MobileMe service

As if the initial launch troubles, downtime, and other errors weren’t enough, it looks like Apple is experiencing even more hiccups with their new MobileMe service. Many customers are unable to access the email portion of their MobileMe account. Apple has posted a bulletin indicating that the issue is a known problem, and is effecting less than 1% of the user base. This may be true, but a quick scan of the Apple discussion boards reveals growing contingent of infuriated customers that seem to be getting no where with Apple’s support team. Furthermore, British customers that signed up for a free trial of the service are victims of a flawed billing system. It seems that Apple’s billing system inadvertently placed a 121 Pound pre-authorization charge on many new customer accounts. Whoops. Apple, to their credit, is providing effected customers with an additional 30 days of free service which, when tacked on to the 60 day trial and initial 30 day free credit, provides customers with a full 120 days of free MobileMe access. That’s great, but if the downtown and issues continue, no amount of free service will make up for an unreliable offering.

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MobileMe to go live between 6PM-12AM tomorrow

By on July 8, 2008 at 6:39 AM.

MobileMe to go live between 6PM-12AM tomorrow

Those of you that have been patiently waiting for Apple’s new hosted PIM service to go online can begin rejoicing. The company has updated their .Mac status page, indicating that MobileMe will go live for new and current subscribers sometime between 6PM and 12AM on July 9th. During that maintenance window, Apple will be taking down their .Mac service, bringing to a close an era of mediocre service that will hopefully be replaced by the company’s “exchange for the rest of us” MobileMe. While we here at BGR are a bit more excited about iPhone 2.0′s legitimate Exchange implementation, we know more than a few of you are ready to jump on board with MobileMe’s push email, contact and calendar syncing. Let us know how your first encounter with the new service goes, but for our money, you’d be better off with a hosted exchange solution of your choosing. Just sayin’…

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Funambol Open-source Syncing; Viable MobileMe Competitor?

By on June 11, 2008 at 10:59 AM.

Funambol Open-source Syncing; Viable MobileMe Competitor?

There has been a whole lot of buzz about Funambol since the WWDC keynote, mostly touting the open-source offering as a wonderful free alternative to MobileMe. MobileMe, in case you’ve just awoken from a coma, is Apple’s sync everything everywhere solution. Syncing with MobileMe is seamless, instant and always active. You know, kind of like Exchange. So is this free Funambol offering really going to be a viable alternative to Apple’s new suite? There is an expression that almost always holds true, people: You get what you pay for. There’s a comment in the post on the other side of the read link that pretty much sums up our thoughts and experiences with Funambol quite nicely:

I played with funambol a while ago, and seriously was it rough… You pay for services like MobileMe because they’re seamless, intuitive and easy to use, not because they’re a ‘cheaper option’. Imagine what would happen if your mobile phone’s sms had the performance of Twitter.

The bright side, as mentioned above, is that Funambol is indeed open-source. While Funambol’s shaky free portal - which will only support contacts sync initially - is a possible option for those with low expectations, perhaps some developer will come along and put the Funambol sync engine to use in a more competitive and reliable offering. We shall see…

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