California: Apple’s groundbreaking application iThought, which aims to guide consumers’ ethical, political, philosophical and spiritual beliefs, has come under fire from the United Nations, which has accused Apple of “trying to convert people”.
A Human Rights panel slammed Apple after the application was presented by the tech giant’s CEO Tim Cook in Sweden yesterday.
“One feature of the iThought application randomly prompts the user to vote for specific political candidates, then suggests religious texts for the user to read. It’s totally unacceptable for a corporation to do this”. Dr Alice Braunheisser of the UNHCR said in a statement today.
Apple defended the app by insisting it promoted political and religious knowledge, but would not comment as to why it encourages users to “abandon family values” and “consume big”.
One controversial feature of the app is the “SafeGuard” feature, which bars certain people in the user’s phone from contacting them if they exhibit “anti-social behaviour” such as encouraging the user to spend less time around technology, go on camping trips or read research that questions the impact of excessive screen time on the human brain.
“The SafeGuard feature ensures that the user is always connected, always switched on and is never alone,” an overview of the feature states on the company’s website. “Anti-social behaviour is to be discouraged and avoided, and SafeGuard takes care of that for you by making sure that negative influences don’t interrupt the user’s digital experience”.
Also under scrutiny is the ‘iBooster’ feature, which sends distinct tones and melodies designed to excite material urges in the human brain.
According to a description of the feature, it “proactively deflects depressive and introspective tendencies of the user” in order to distract them from deep thought and potentially life-changing decisions.
“Users can now free up brain-space and let iThought do the thinking,” said Cook. “This will remove the need for tiresome critical thinking and allow users to kick back and relax”.
The iThought precedes the impending launch of the Apple iConform, set to be released in July 2018.