Modernizing your elders can be a difficult process, especially when you’re tasked with teaching grandma how to operate the new Mac computer your parents got her to stay in touch. That’s always been the beauty of Mac’s ‘One to One’ program: for $99, Apple Stores offered a full year of instruction on the Mac, iPhone or iPad in both solo and group sessions.
Apple already offers some free workshops in retail locations — basic tutorials on getting to know your Apple product and working with some select apps such as iMovie and FaceTime. Stores also offer free youth workshops, camps and field trip opportunities for kids, which are largely focused around using Apple products to create movies, books and other projects.
According to the report, Apple will also add new free workshops, with broad themes like, “Create” and “Discover.”
It’s clear that Apple will not get rid of its didactic approach to easing users into products wholesale. But, it is scaling back its effort considerably on people who might need Apple’s help the most: those who struggle with computer literacy. While senior citizens are the easiest to point to, people with physical or mental disabilities also need extra help in tailoring their computer experience to fit their needs and capabilities.
It’s certainly not Apple’s responsibility to ensure that those people learn how to get the usability they want out of their shiny new technological purchase, but the extra hand-holding the company has done thus far has likely been a great resource to a community that needs it. It’ll be a shame to see it go.