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Email to Tim Cook prompted change of Apple's 'on hold' music quality

post #1 of 46
Thread Starter 
In a recent thread on Reddit, one Apple customer describes an experience in which he effected change in Apple's daily operations, specifically as it pertains to "on hold" music, after contacting CEO Tim Cook via email.

Tim Cook


Since the days of Steve Jobs, Apple's chief executives have been famously open to customer suggestions, complaints and praise, often engaging with the public via work email accounts. As noted by TUAW, that tradition appears to carry on with current CEO Tim Cook.

According to one account shared on Reddit -- in response to an earlier post on efforts taken by Apple's Maps team to correct erroneous address data -- a customer was reportedly able to induce change in the quality of on hold music used by Apple's call center.

I once sent Tim an email about the quality of music while on hold with Apple. It was super low quality, therefore an upbeat rock song sounded like pure distortion and really aggravated me because I was on hold for 20+ minutes for something so simple (iPhone didn't turn on, needed to set up a repair as in my country no Apple Store = have to send it to another country).

Much to my surprise a lady from Cupertino called me up the next day, saying she'd received a concerning email from Tim about ugly distortion hold music while on the phone, that Tim had tested this himself and agreed that something had to be done. She assured me that the hold music would be tested to make sure it sounded pleasant on all types of phones and connections.

The next time I called Apple, the hold music was indeed very pleasant.


Cook is known to be just as open to criticism . During an interview with NBC's Brian Williams in 2012, Cook admitted he routinely receives hundreds of emails from customers every day.

"I get hundreds, and some days thousands of emails from customers. This is a privilege because they talk to you as if you're sitting at their kitchen table," Cook said at the time. "Because they care so deeply about Apple, they want to make a suggestion, or want to ask for help on something, or want to tell you how much they love the product."
post #2 of 46
What's his email address so we can write to him?
 
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post #3 of 46
Telling Tim Cook vs. venting on these forums.
How innovative.

Concern trolls: take notice. 1wink.gif

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post #4 of 46
Awesome. It's been awful for years. Glad they've fixed that.
post #5 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by pazuzu View Post

What's his email address so we can write to him?

Knock yourself out.

 

tcook@apple.com

post #6 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Telling Tim Cook vs. venting on these forums.
How innovative.

Concern trolls: take notice. 1wink.gif

I knew this was coming. I'm going to email him about Safari's lack of Web Components support. 

post #7 of 46
I'm going to email him and say Apple should spend its vast fortune on genetically engineered dinosaurs which they can sell as a new product.

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post #8 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by pazuzu View Post

What's his email address so we can write to him?

apple_customer_who_posted_on_reddit@somewhere.com

post #9 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Since the days of Steve Jobs, Apple's chief executives have been famously open to customer suggestions, complaints and praise, often engaging with the public via work email accounts. As noted by TUAW, that tradition carries on with current CEO Tim Cook.

Exactly how many Apple Chief Executives have there been since the days of Steve Jobs?

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post #10 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post
 

Knock yourself out.

 

tcook@apple.com

(Yes, I know its not that difficult to get the address but) Tim's gonna send a goon squad after you now...

post #11 of 46
Quote:

"I get hundreds, and some days thousands of emails from customers. This is a privilege because they talk to you as if you're sitting at their kitchen table," Cook said at the time. "Because they care so deeply about Apple, they want to make a suggestion, or want to ask for help on something, or want to tell you how much they love the product."

 

 

It would be easy to dismiss that kind of statement as pandering, but I think he really means it. There are two reasons why I think that.

 

First, as this story shows, he actually implements changes based on these types of e-mails.

 

Second, the statement is actually quite logical -- it really *Is* very valuable to apple that customers take the time to send this feedback. I suspect most CEOs really do want to know what customers think of their companies (think about all the times you are annoyed by customer satisfaction surveys from various companies when you visit their website).  Many companies are so dysfunctional that either the feedback doesn't reach the CEO without going through a "filter", or the CEO isn't able to get people in the company to react to the feedback. For Tim Cook to directly receive useful, unfiltered info from customers is a big deal. And it speaks well of Apple as an organization that they are able to productively use that feedback. 

 

So I totally believe him when he says that he feels "privileged" to receive this feedback. It really is a privilege, and he's smart enough to recognize it as such. 

post #12 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blastdoor View Post

First, as this story shows, he actually implements changes based on these types of e-mails.

You mean he checks out what an email suggest.

He didn't implement the change because of the email.

He checked out the the issue because of the email then implemented the change because the on-hold music was crap.

post #13 of 46
Next thing we will see is Tim in 'Undercover Boss'. D'oh! /s
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post #14 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by boeyc15 View Post

Next thing we will see is Tim in 'Undercover Boss'. D'oh! /s

 

That show is so terrible.

 

There's always these huge companies that have a lot of employees, and a few of them are chosen, and they always have the worst sob stories in the world. My child has a rare sickness, my home was burnt down, my car only has three wheels blah blah blah, and then the CEO comes and gives a few employees at the end of the show thousands of dollars.

 

I wonder what all of the other employees think about that? In a company that has thousands of employees, why are they only helping two or three of them?

post #15 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post
 

You mean he checks out what an email suggest.

He didn't implement the change because of the email.

He checked out the the issue because of the email then implemented the change because the on-hold music was crap.


You must work in management, or in politics that require you to spin everything about great things being all because of you.
"If things work out great, it's because of your leadership and vision.  If it fails horribly, then it's someone else's fault." - That's what I read from your comment.

A customer made him aware of a situation (you say "suggest"), he investigated it, found it to be true, and made the necessary changes.  The difference is that someone at Apple contacted the customer about his email, so as far as I'm concerned, that customer should receive the credit from beginning to end.

Good for Tim Cook for not only taking issues like these seriously, but for seeing them through its conclusion that makes customers feel like Apple actually cares about what they say.

 

post #16 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by pazuzu View Post

What's his email address so we can write to him?
Knock yourself out.

tcook@apple.com

SJobs@apple.com still works, only jobs doesn't respond like he used to....
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post #17 of 46

I'll just need to get Jimmy Iovine's email address. I can email Tim and Cc Jimmy about the lack of universal liner notes for iTunes music albums.

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post #18 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by pazuzu View Post

What's his email address so we can write to him?
tcook@apple.com So glad a CEO has time for the customers and takes into consideration what we want.
post #19 of 46
U know how u can look up a word's definition on an iphone/ipad by selecting it and having "define" as an option? All me, baby. No lie.
post #20 of 46

I can promise you that AT&T does not do this for its customers.  They invented the on hold and layers of control just to keep customer's from bothering them.  AT&T:  we are now offering combined billing for all your customer service needs.  Not mentioned was the billing is combined for charges on your late payment, but it is not combined for rebates to separate types of account credits.  AT&T owes me for overcharging me on my cell bill, but they expect me to still pay them for in full all of the bill while I wait for them to credit my account.  Miss paying your bill one month and they will bill you $105 for being late for 3 bills.  So which is it a combined bill or a separate bill on the same piece of paper?  The answer is which ever makes AT&T more money and makes you wait on hold longer to get your bill corrected.

post #21 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by AjbDtc826 View Post

U know how u can look up a word's definition on an iphone/ipad by selecting it and having "define" as an option? All me, baby. No lie.

I read somewhere apple would not take(maybe 'acknowledge' is a better word) 'ideas' from non employees because of legal reasons.

Of course you know the universal answer by any company that uses 'your idea'; against any claim from you (or anyone else's) being unique? Answer- Well it's obvious!
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post #22 of 46
Understandable. I wouldn't ask for any kind of credit, I was just happy that they did it. My life has improved since as it makes it easier to learn new, big words.
post #23 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by AjbDtc826 View Post

U know how u can look up a word's definition on an iphone/ipad by selecting it and having "define" as an option? All me, baby. No lie.

Post hoc, ergo propter hoc. Requesting a feature and then having that feature added at some later point doesn't mean you had anything to do with it. Chances are if you thought of a feature others would have thought of it, too.

For example, here is a feature request I submitted earlier this year to the makers of 1Password. From my PoV it was a clever idea I had conceived of all on my own but if you look at the linked to they posted in a reply to me (they are very good about getting back to you) they blogged about this exact feature less than a week earlier and the screenshot along with the time it took to release means they had been working on it for some time.

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post #24 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

Exactly how many Apple Chief Executives have there been since the days of Steve Jobs?
This time, One.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Macky the Macky View Post

SJobs@apple.com still works, only jobs doesn't respond like he used to....
If only he still did...
post #25 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post
 


You must work in management, or in politics that require you to spin everything about great things being all because of you.
"If things work out great, it's because of your leadership and vision.  If it fails horribly, then it's someone else's fault." - That's what I read from your comment.

No idea how you would have gotten that from what I wrote.

But okay.

 

You think Tim sits around reading emails and starts changing everything simply because of these emails?

Quote:
A customer made him aware of a situation (you say "suggest"), he investigated it, found it to be true, and made the necessary changes.  The difference is that someone at Apple contacted the customer about his email, so as far as I'm concerned, that customer should receive the credit from beginning to end.

I agree.

post #26 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

Post hoc, ergo propter hoc. Requesting a feature and then having that feature added at some later point doesn't mean you had anything to do with it. Chances are if you thought of a feature others would have thought of it, too.

For example, here is a feature request I submitted earlier this year to the makers of 1Password. From my PoV it was a clever idea I had conceived of all on my own but if you look at the linked to they posted in a reply to me (they are very good about getting back to you) they blogged about this exact feature less than a week earlier and the screenshot along with the time it took to release means they had been working on it for some time.
I totally agree, and while that's always a possibility the part that confirmed it to me was how it was implemented which was to the T of my recommendation. Don't take this from me bro lol.

As far as ur idea goes, that's pretty good how they got back to you at the very least. I never got any type of response. So I'm playing with Schrödinger's cat here, being on the optimistic side.
post #27 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carthusia View Post
 

I'll just need to get Jimmy Iovine's email address. I can email Tim and Cc Jimmy about the lack of universal liner notes for iTunes music albums.

Probably jiovine@apple.com or iovine@apple.com

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post #28 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post


You must work in management, or in politics that require you to spin everything about great things being all because of you.

"If things work out great, it's because of your leadership and vision.  If it fails horribly, then it's someone else's fault." - That's what I read from your comment.

Just think, if the rumors are true we get to listen to Carney doing this 24/7 on all the Apple news!
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post #29 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

I'm going to email him and say Apple should spend its vast fortune on genetically engineered dinosaurs which they can sell as a new product.

Jurapple Park?

post #30 of 46
Dear Mr. Cook,

Here's an idea that could help Apple ensure it remains ahead of Scamsung and the rest of the droid heap and really lock in its customers' love, one that has even more potential than improving hold music quality: quadruple the iPhone's battery life. Should you choose to implement this feature, I won't ask for even a smidgin of credit; it will be enough just to know I have helped drain the power from Scamsung's latest marketing scheme and helped effect change for the betterment of the lives of dedicated Appleites the world over.

Most sincerely yours,

Wall-Hugger
post #31 of 46
I'm glad to know Tim is paying attention to what's really important.
post #32 of 46
Now I'd like TC and Apple to go further and finally provide audiophile quality hi-res lossless music downloads too!
post #33 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1983 View Post

Now I'd like TC and Apple to go further and finally provide audiophile quality hi-res lossless music downloads too!

Is that really up to them? I'd think the record companies won't want to sl their master quality tracks, and if they did I would think iTunes Store is the last place they'd want to sell them after Apple obtained too much control last time.

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post #34 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_CA View Post

No idea how you would have gotten that from what I wrote.
But okay.

You think Tim sits around reading emails and starts changing everything simply because of these emails?
I agree.

I got the same gist from your first comment. It just sounded like you were focused on a technicality. The person was saying that it's possible for people who write emails to Apple to actually make a change. We know it has to be approved and checked out.
post #35 of 46
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post
Is that really up to them? I'd think the record companies won't want to sl their master quality tracks, and if they did I would think iTunes Store is the last place they'd want to sell them after Apple obtained too much control last time.

 

I’d consider masters the files with separate, adjustable tracks for each instrument and vocalist, but that’s me.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

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Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already f*ed.

 

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post #36 of 46
Dear Tim -
Please initiate a step up to HD iTunes video program where I can upgrade my past SD video purchases to HD without paying full price all over again.
Yours truly,
Pazuzu
 
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post #37 of 46

Great :) The on hold music in the Scandinavian Apple support was indeed of terrible quality last time I called, earlier this year. Kinda makes me wanna call again to see if it has changed here too, he he.

post #38 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by palegolas View Post

Great 1smile.gif The on hold music in the Scandinavian Apple support was indeed of terrible quality last time I called, earlier this year. Kinda makes me wanna call again to see if it has changed here too, he he.

I'm curious to know if they also initiated the change across the board or stopped with the US.

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post #39 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by boredumb View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

I'm going to email him and say Apple should spend its vast fortune on genetically engineered dinosaurs which they can sell as a new product.
Jurapple Park?

Jurapple Park is already being constructed on Apple's new campus. This short video is a sneak preview (music rearranged by Iovine):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x8apI6x2Qyg
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post #40 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by AZREOSpecialist View Post

I'm glad to know Tim is paying attention to what's really important.

Me, too.
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