Our society has become entirely too reliant on computerized technology. A decade ago, if someone wanted to call their credit card or billing company, they would have no problem talking to a real person. Now when you call a company, you have to go through an unnecessary mess of button-pressing just to get on the phone with someone who can’t understand you or who doesn’t want to help you at all. And through all of this, there is still not one time when a person wishes for the computer system over the real person—that is, until Apple had to step up their game.
After my computer’s hard drive crashed, I needed to get my iTunes music back that I had purchased over the last four years. I called the iTunes store customer service where I was immediately welcomed by David, who talks like the person you wished answered the phone for every company. After a small speech thanking me for calling, David informed me that he was in fact not a person, but rather a computerized system that can understand full sentences. He then prompted me to state my reason for calling in a complete sentence, so I explained that I wanted my iTunes music back. David replied with an “OK, so you want your iTunes music back. We can definitely help you with that so let me transfer you to the technical support department.” Here is where it gets weird. Not only was there rustling in the background that suggested an office setting, David also began to type on a computer—or so it seems, as you hear this “click, click, click” keyboard sound. Instead of being put on hold and listening to horrible music, I continued to hear David typing away, and every once in a while he’d say something like “sorry for the wait” or “it will be just one more moment”—click, click, click. Finally I got on the phone with a customer service agent who proceeded to be rude to me, all while seemingly being unable to understand anything I said to her. Fifteen minutes later, all I wanted was David back—at least he laughs and makes jokes from time to time.
So what does all of this mean? It means that Apple has one-upped everyone again and proven that the world will never go back to being able to talk to a real human on the phone who cares about your inquiry. Pretty soon Apple will take David to the next level, and we’ll all have him in our homes—talking to us from our iPads.
By: Cristina Himka