I know this will get me into hot water with a certain group of the population but I am not a big fan of Apple as a company. Being someone who doesn’t like to be told what I have to do or buy, I don’t like Apple’s strategy of purposely making their technology incompatible with competitor products. I will admit though it is a lucrative way of insuring brand loyalty, and increasing their own bottom line.

As Apple has become the trendy brand for “cool” people I have found myself disliking them, and what they represent even more. For this reason, when Apple launches a new product, I generally cheer for it to fail. Not because I think the product will be of poor quality, but because I know it will be embraced by so many consumers who have a serious emotional attachment to all things Apple.

On February 2nd, Apple released its much-anticipated virtual reality headset called the Vision Pro. With a $3,500 price tag and, in my opinion, ridiculous appearance, I was predicting it would be a bust. After all, who would want to spend this kind of money to walk around wearing something that looks like a large pair of ski goggles? But as I saw fans of Apple raving about their experience while trying them, I started to second guess myself. I secretly wondered if I was just getting older, and had lost touch with the world of technology that I used to be a part of.

It’s too early to know for certain, but early reports are giving Apple a reason for being concerned that my initial reaction to the headset might have been correct. According to MacRumors, sources inside of Apple say they sold roughly 200,000 units in the weeks prior to its release. however unusually high numbers of returns are beginning to worry investors. Perhaps that is part of why Apple stock was down around 3.25% last week.

The reasons for these product returns are diverse and include claims that the device induces motion sickness and headaches, lacks quality apps, or is uncomfortable to wear. Experts also say the high price tag is playing a role.

If this product does fail, I think its significance goes beyond one product simply not performing well. Apple customers are some of the most avid and loyal consumers in the world. According to PC Magazine their brand loyalty reached an astounding 92% in 2021. Many Apple customers are like sports fans that continue to cheer for a team no matter how well they perform, or what mistakes they make.

However, judging from the comments I have seen on Reddit and other social media sites, this fanaticism of Apple supporters may be waning. For me, I think that is a good thing.

No company deserves undivided loyalty. When a corporation no longer believes it has to compete for its customers apathy or price gauging is the result. My advice to any consumer is to always keep your options open. Never be so loyal to a company that you become blind to its flaws or antagonistic to its competitors.

Like any other relationship in your life, you shouldn’t be taken for granted by the companies who you give your hard-earned money to. After all, you owe them nothing, it is their job to constantly be doing all that they can to convince you to buy their products. Perhaps it is a lesson Apple needs to learn.

(Past performance is no guarantee of future results. The advice is general in nature and not intended for specific situations)