Another Christmas has been and gone. Another Christmas at which thousands of people across the world celebrated the birth of Christ, or the… erm… yuling of tides, in their own special way: by the giving and receiving of high-tech products and their associated accessories.

Apple’s iPhone is a particularly highly revered gift, and has the advantage of a huge ecosystem of accessories to go with it. This is a boon to any friends or relatives who don’t really know the recipient well enough to get them something they actually want, as it lets them don the appearance of thoughtfulness while actually requiring very little thought indeed.

“Oooh, a pair of headphones. Just what I need.”
“Well, I know you’ve got an iPhone, and those white earbuds that come with it just scream for you to get mugged.”
“…and the next present is… a tartan iPhone sleeve, hurrah!”
“Open the small box next…”
“Oh, a portable iPhone dock!”
“It’s for when you’re travelling. Open the big one now…”
“Oh, a bloody enormous iPhone dock with integrated alarm clock, speakers and coffee machine!”
“That one’s for when you’re not travelling…”

And so it goes on. Every possible iPhone attachment you can possibly think of… plus a load that you wouldn’t have thought of even after a really good student party. And if you really can’t find a gift from the thousands of tawdry cases, docks and other accessories, well there’s always the good old iTunes voucher.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t dislike the iPhone itself. Apple has done a great job revitalising a stale phone industry. But when it boils down to it, it’s just a phone. Yes, it’s got apps. Yes it looks very shiny. Yes, it’s wonderful that you can zoom in and out by pinching your fingers. But it’s just a bit of tech produced by some very talented engineers under the dominant glare of a highly focussed CEO. It’s not a religious icon. It doesn’t need to be worshipped. The gods of Cupertino won’t smite you if you don’t buy enough trinkets and gizmos to go with it. And you certainly don’t need to turn into a missionary in an effort to convert me to the Church of Jobs.

It’s a lovely bit of tech. Millions of people own them. Yet still Apple wants us to believe that choosing their products is a mark of individuality. Think different. Yes, we are all individuals.

So this comic is dedicated to anyone who has bought an accessory for their iPhone that they don’t really need. Bonus points if it made claims about protecting your beloved phone from grizzly bears, gravity or thermonuclear explosion. But more generally this comic is dedicated to anyone who has ever succumbed to the marketing spiel for any product, only to find themselves a little disappointed when reality sets in. And yes, I do count myself amongst that group.

Finally, it seems appropriate that as I write this the internets are awash with news of a BBC reporter managing to break a supposedly indestructible phone. He should have seen it coming really. After all, if it’s really indestructible, how did they manage to make it phone shaped?

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↓ Transcript
G1: Hey, check out my new indestructible iPhone sleeve

G2: Indestructible?

G1: Yep, it's made out of a completely indestructible material. No tool can mark it. No phaser can cut it. No amount of pressure can bend it.

G2: So how did they manage to make it into the right shape for your iPhone?

G1: I've been had, haven't I?