Fairmont students take a big byte of Apple products

Fairmont students take a big byte of Apple products

Apple products have invaded the desks of business professionals, the eyes of artists, the hands of the elderly, the laps of children, and the hallways of high schools everywhere, including Fairmont.

The Flyer surveyed students to get an idea of how many own at least one Apple product. Of the 99 responses, 90.36 percent answered in the affirmative.

Students’ Apple products range from the screen-less iPod Shuffle, with barely more than a Pause/Play button, to the more sophisticated iPod Touch, and from the iPhone smart phone that allows simultaneous talking, texting and e-mailing, to the relatively new iPad tablet. Some also own a Macbook or the Macintosh desktop personal computer that has become a staple in many recording studios, offices and classrooms.

“Apple is involved in every aspect of my life, including communication and education,” said junior Jake Faulkner, who owns an iPod Touch and is planning on purchasing the iPhone 5 in the future.

Lyle Doe, technology coordinator at Van Buren Middle School Doe feels similarly about Apple products. “I use them for staying in touch with family, and, on the educational side, harvesting information.” Doe has been working with Apple products his entire technology career. He has 24 years’ experience at the Kettering School system, and he has spent all 24 working with Apple.

Started up on April 1, 1976, by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne, Apple went through years of fierce competition and a downfall in the late ‘90s. This was followed a comeback around the turn of the century, and currently Apple sits atop the technological kingdom.

But why? Doe says it’s because of Apple’s quality and reliability. “Everything works. That doesn’t mean everything is perfect. It means everything works; they do their homework.”

Doe says the best thing to happen to Apple was the growth in the popularity of devices that people could carry in their pockets. “Mobile devices changed everything for Apple,” he said. Before the iPod, Apple was just another struggling computer company; in fact, Michael Dell of Dell Inc. advised Jobs to liquidate Apple in the late 1990s. Currently, Apple is worth around 35 times the value of Dell, Inc.

Fairmont sophomore Nick Rosell is one of the millions who are glad that Apple survived. “Nobody has made anything like an iPhone,” he said. “Sure, there are other smart phones, but nothing is like an iPhone.”

Rosell is an iPhone user and always has his iPhone with him. “They don’t get viruses,” he said, “but they break easily and are fragile.”

Apple released the iPhone 5, the newest model, on Sept. 21, 2012. Apple’s slogan for the product is “The best thing to happen to iPhone since iPhone.” It comes with a 4-inch retina display, a new A6 chip, 8-megapixel iSight camera that allows users to take a panoramic shot, a brand new iOS6 operating system, and a thinner, longer, and lighter design than the iPhone 4S. The price tag is $199 for the model with the lowest memory at 16 gigabytes; 32 GB and 64 GB models will run buyers $299 and $399, respectively.

Apple has also crafted a new iPad Mini, a smaller version of the iPad, that may be released as early as Oct. 23, 2012. The Mini will be facing more competition than other handheld Apple products due to items such as the Kindle Fire and a Google tablet. “I think it will be useful,” said Faulkner. “It has all the features of an iPad, just smaller.”

It is no question that the iPod is the most popular of Apple’s products. Of The Flyer’s interviewed students, 49.03 percent said they owned some sort of iPod. Since its introduction on Oct. 23, 2001, more than 300 million iPods have been sold. The iPod has evolved throughout the years, and every model has been redesigned several times. Faulkner likes the iPod because of “how many uses it has and the apps.”

No matter how it’s tossed, technology is and has been expanding exponentially, and Apple is leading the way for now. The technology industry will continue to branch out in every direction.

“It’s fascinating to see where we’ve been and exciting to see where we’re going,” said Doe. “This kind of stuff used to be science fiction.”