I want to believe this story--if only because customer service is such a lamentable part of commercial life these days.
Admittedly, this is a tough story to confirm or refute. But the Apple chasers at 9to5Mac, who seem more like 24-7Mac to me, write that no less a customer satisfaction expert than Apple CEO Steve Jobs has been answering iPad customer queries.
Oh, alright, apparently he did it once.
The story goes that a Swedish man called Jezper wrote to Apple and asked a very important question: "I'll keep it short. I'm Jezper from Sweden, a long time Apple fan, currently about to replace the very last computer at home with a brand spanking new iMac i7. I'm also awaiting the release of the iPad. However, I have one question: Will the wifi-only version somehow support tethering thru my iPhone?"
Warming to his theme, and keeping it less short than he might have, Jezper continued: "Two devices, based on the same OS, with already built-in technology to share one data plan suggests a secondary contract could possibly be redundant. From the look of your keynote, where the iPad sits well between my MacBook Pro and my iPhone, I was hoping the three of them could interact as seamless as possible. All the best, Jezper Sëderlund [a famous DJ in his own right]"
(Yes, it was that Jezper. Surely you had guessed.)
In response to his query, he reportedly received a reply from Steve Jobs. 9to5Mac says it confirmed that the answer came from Jobs himself. And given its clear and unambiguous content, I feel confident that it was, indeed, typed by the very fingers that walked a rapt audience through the iPad's joys not a few weeks ago.
For, from his 3.1.2 iPhone, Jobs reportedly wrote: "No."
Prompt, direct customer service. If only all companies could do it this way.