Apple Causes “Religious” Reactions in Devoted Fans
OK, this article isn’t technically about a specific gadget but it has to do with the almost-cult status of Apple and its Apple products, with passionate followers of all thing iPod, iPhone, Mac—Apple.
As it turns out, neuroscientists have proved that Apple does, in fact, cause “religious” reactions in the brains of fans proving that “the cult of Apple” is real and calculable.
In a recent BBC documentary, Alex Riley explores the world of the superbrands—including Apple—“how they get us to buy their stuff, trust them and even idolize them” (BBC). The documentary, Secrets of the Superbrands, features neuroscientists show the relationship and similarities between Apple devotees and Apple imagery, and religious people and religious imagery.
In the documentary, Riley contacts editor of “World of Apple” Alex Brooks. Brooks is a self-confessed Apple worshiper and claims to think about Apple 24 hours a day. Because of this, neuroscientists decided to take a look at his brain via an MRI scan to see how it reacted to images of Apple and non-Apple products. They found that “the Apple products are triggering the same bits of [Brooks’] brain as religious imagery triggers in a person of faith.”
“This suggests that the big tech brands have harnessed, or exploit, the brain areas that have evolved to process religion,” one scientist says. A meeting with the Bishop of Buckingham, who ironically reads the bible using his iPad, mentioned the similarities of the Apple store in in Convent Garden, London and a church—it’s filled with a ton of religious imagery, such as arches, little alters (in this case, product displays), and stone floors. The documentary goes as far as calling Steve Jobs, the “Messiah.”
The documentary is divided into three parts and doesn’t look at just Apple—they look at other superbrands such as Facebook and Twitter. “Like Apple, mobile phones and social networks offer an opportunity for us to express our basic human need to communicate. And it’s by tapping into our basic needs, like gossip, religion or sex that these brands are taking over our world at such lightning speed,” Riley says.
Riley finishes the documentary saying, “That’s not to say that clever marketing and brilliant technical innovation aren’t also crucial, but it seems that if you’re not providing a service which is of potential interest to every one of the 6.9 billion human beings on the planet, the chances are you’re never going to become a technology superbrand.”