Apple Didn’t Include a USB-A to USB-C with the iPad Pro?
On the day you could order the new iPad Pro 11 inch for 2018, I enthusiastically ordered mine as soon as I had a moment to do so and it arrived yesterday about 3pm. With the Smart Keyboard Folio, the 2nd generation Apple Pencil, and the iPad Pro 11″ 1TB model, my total with tax was $2,167.54.
Unbeknownst to me when I began to open the iPad’s packaging, that enthusiasm would soon turn to disappointment and then outright anger! Especially since I’d intended to set this new iPad Pro up and then restore my older 9.7″ iPad Pro with my wife’s iPad’s backup so she could take it on her trip which she left on this morning. Instead I ended up wasting TWO HOURS of driving and in-store time to chase down a cable that Apple should have included in the box.
WHAT…NO DONGLE OR CABLE?
As you may know, Apple decided to move to USB-C for these new iPad Pros, a move I see as a good one. In fact, I had already made somewhat of a switch to USB-C with my MacBook 12″ and its USB-C connections. As such, I already owned several USB-C cables and dongles.
What I did NOT expect was the included USB-C and charger was like the MacBooks: USB-C on both ends! No USB-A to USB-C dongle (or cable) was included. Setting up this new iPad Pro was therefore impossible for me since the 27″ iMac Retina I bought in 2015 for $4,800 had Thunderbolt 2 and USB-A connections. Without USB-A to USB-C in some fashion, I had no way to perform the required connect-to-iTunes step to begin the set up on this new iPad Pro!
I thought, “Wait a second…Apple couldn’t be this stupid…or could they?” so I got on ‘the Google’ and confirmed that yes, Apple had been that shortsighted and I had to go and buy a USB-A to USB-C charge/sync cable. Shit.
APPLE STORE, IRVINE CA
Knowing I didn’t have much time, I hauled-ass down to the closest Apple Store. The woman who helped me received the angry rant from me, though I did deliver it somewhat cheerfully and made sure she knew I wasn’t mad at her. She connected me up with an Apple Genius who confirmed that yes, for my “older iMac” (seriously? It is barely 3 years old) that I did require a USB-A to USB-C charge/sync cable but they were out of stock!
The Genius’ suggestion? Go to a Best Buy store three miles away. Fortunately Best Buy did have one left of my needed USB-A to USB-C charge/sync cable but it was in the warehouse and it took the young man 15 minutes to locate it.
This is not an isolated rant from some guy who doesn’t know better:
- I’ve been buying Apple products since 1980.
- I was in Hawaii when Steve introduced Macintosh to the company and sales reps.
- My back-of-the-envelope sees that I’ve collectively spent nearly $100k-125k on Apple products and services personally and for the company my wife and I co-own.
- I went to work for Apple directly after Steve came back in 1997.
- Without Apple and the embrace of the Desktop Publishing revolution, our company would not have begun.
- My wife and I own a significant number of AAPL shares and yes, we thank Apple often for helping us to achieve fabulous results in our retirement accounts.
But this is the first time I’ve been angry over a move that Apple made since not including a USB-A to USB-C dongle or cable was a trivial oversight that cost me time, effort, energy and frustration.
- Why did you not pre-stock Apple Stores with enough USB-A to USB-C cables? Or ask your suppliers (e.g., Belkin) to ship extras to each store?
- Why did you not include a USB-A to USB-C cable in the box? For the kind of gross margin you’re making on these devices, I assume it would be a fractional change to that margin to include one.
Because your team didn’t think-through what your install base would require, my wife was unable to take my older iPad Pro with her on her trip (I didn’t have enough time to get it ready).
That device would have been essential for her since she could have used the previous Apple Pencil to sign PDF documents on her trip. Now she will have to print everything out (and find a printer), sign them by hand, scan them in, and then send them. While that process is trivial for me as I’ve done it often, she never has and the time I could have used to get that iPad Pro set up for her and coach her through that process, was instead used to locate and buy a damn USB-A to USB-C cable.
About Steve Borsch
SiteGround is 'The One'
Connecting the Dots Podcast
Podcasting hit the mainstream in July of 2005 when Apple added podcast show support within iTunes. I'd seen this coming so started podcasting in May of 2005 and kept going until August of 2007. Unfortunately was never 'discovered' by national broadcasters, but made a delightfully large number of connections with people all over the world because of these shows. Click here to view the archive of my podcast posts.