Sunday, April 25, 2010

When Steve Jobs tried to buy a Helocar

It had been a very busy year, and Steve Jobs is a very busy man. But he still had something that he needed to do; it was time to get some new wheels, so Jobs went to his local HeloCar dealership. He didn't have much time to waste.

(And yes, I know that the HeloCar campaign didn't happen on Jobs' watch. But humor me.)

"Can I help you?" asked a smiling, fresh-faced saleswoman - I mean, automotive advisor.

"Yes," replied Steve. "I want your top-of-the-line HeloCar, with a place to put my yogurt and an insanely great CD player.

The automotive advisor smiled again. "I can sell you a HeloCar with food service and music service. Step right this way."

Steve carefully examined the well-designed HeloCar that the automotive advisor showed him. The workmanship was superb, and every element had its place. But when he looked inside, he noticed that there was something missing.

"Where's the cupholder and the CD player?" he asked.

"The HeloCar is an advanced device," replied the smiling automotive advisor. "It does not have a mere cupholder or CD player. Instead, we offer our own food service, HeloFood, and our own music service, HeloTunes."

"But what if I want to play my own CDs?" asked Jobs.

"HeloTunes is a comprehensive music service," replied the automotive advisor, still smiling. "We can provide you with a variety of music styles that are compatible with the design of the HeloCar, all for a price as low at 99 cents per song."

"So can I buy Bob Dylan for my HeloCar?" asked Steve.

The automotive advisor paused. "Bob Dylan is not appropriate for the HeloCar," she replied, slightly tersely. The smile was beginning to fade.

"Dylan not appropriate?" asked Steve. "He was the voice of a generation!"

The smile had definitely left the automotive advisor's face. "HeloTunes offers a number of songs that are compatible with the HeloCar."

"But I'm your customer!" Jobs was visibly angry. "I'd like to put my music on my CD player in my car! After all, I own the car, don't I?"

"Subject to the terms of the automotive license agreement," replied the automotive advisor.

Jobs rolled his eyes, and his neck muscles were visibly tightening under his turtleneck. "Just give me a car which lets me play any music that I want!"

The automotive associate looked at Jobs with an icy stare. "Then perhaps you should go visit the AndroidCar dealer down the street."
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