Apple’s fight with the FBI does nothing to harm its brand


Apple takes second spot in list of UK's best employers
Apple's brand value is safe and sound.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

People may be split over whether or not Apple is doing the right thing by defying the FBI by refusing to create an iPhone backdoor, but according to a new report, Apple’s squabble over privacy isn’t likely to have much of an impact on its brand appeal — however much Donald Trump wants people to boycott the company’s products.

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster this morning revealed the results of a survey of 1,0002 Americans — suggesting that an equal number of people are more or less enamored of the brand as a result of the recent news, while the majority of respondees claim not to know anything about the story.

Munster concludes that: “We believe that the U.S. market is likely more politically influenced than International markets (i.e., International markets would skew more favorably towards Apple if it continued to refuse to unlock the phone in question), but generally believe that regardless of the outcome of the dispute will not have a meaningful impact on Apple’s brand.”

Apple has consistently placed highly in lists of the top global brands over the past decade. Last year, it regained the title of “world’s most valuable brand” in the BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands list, after it temporarily lost the title to Google the previous year.

While Apple’s board may be tempted to push Apple to rethink its privacy policy if it was having a big negative impact on customer opinion, I’d be surprised if Tim Cook is spending too much time worrying about issues like this. As someone who has pushed consistently for privacy during his stint at Apple CEO, it’s going to take more than survey or two to get him to change his mind.

After all, as Cook has said before, some issues are about more than just ROI (return on investment.)

Source: Barrons