A very compelling piece of information began to circulate the other day. According to a report in Businessweek, some are crediting an iPhone update for helping to lower crime rates in New York City. As incredible as this idea may seem, there appears to be some concrete evidence supporting the assertion. 5WPR CEO explains…
Every iPhone is now equipped with a feature that allows users to erase their personal information remotely. In other words, if the device is stolen, users can go in and erase any data in the phones. Known as Activation Lock, but described as a “kill switch” the feature is now being credited by none other than New York’s attorney general with doing the all but impossible, lowering crime rates in NYC.
According to a report published in June 2014, New York Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman noted that robberies involving Apple products dropped nearly 20% in the first five months of the year. The Businessweek article goes on to say that grand larceny rates fell 29% in the same time span. According to the Attorney General’s report, because more than half of the grand larcenies in 2013 involved a mobile device, and the vast majority of those devices were Apple products, it is plausible that the iPhone kill switch can take some credit for lowering those crime rates.
Even if this connection is somewhat spurious, the PR Apple can gain from this announcement is definitely worthy of consideration. Think about it – choose Apple and your chances of getting your phone stolen drop dramatically? That’s an amazing claim that, at least for now, appears to have some backing.
Consider, many people steer clear of vehicles that are considered “commonly stolen.” It stands to reason that they would also see this report as a compelling reason to add more perceived value to Apple’s Activation Lock feature. It’s also likely that many other competitors are working feverishly on a similar feature for their own devices. When that happens, Apple will have yet another opportunity for targeted consumer PR.