Facts: They're not for breakfast anymore

Macalope

The Macalope can’t believe he has to come in to work on a Saturday to explain basic math to people. (Yes, he really writes these Saturday columns on Friday but just go with it.)

Writing for Silicon Valley Business Journal, Luke Stangel claims “Activations of Google Pixel beat the iPhone on Black Friday, kind of.” (Tip o’ the antlers to @designheretic.)

Or kind of not.

New activations of Google’s flagship smartphone, the Pixel, spiked 112 percent over the Black Friday weekend, suggesting the Pixel’s relative sales outpaced sales of competing premium smartphones, new data released this week shows.

No! No, that’s not what it suggests! All it says is that they sold more phones than they were selling before.

The Pixel’s strong relative performance over the Black Friday weekend was helped by deep discounts at Verizon…

What was the Pixel’s Black Friday performance relatively strong compared to? The iPhone? No! The Pixel’s previous performance.

New iPhone activations this year were disappointing compared to Apple’s own Black Friday performance last year. In 2015, activations of the iPhone 6S jumped 36 percent compared to their baseline.

THIS IS NOT HOW MATH WORKS. OK, the overall number of iPhones activated might have been lower than the previous year, but you can’t tell that from the growth of activations without knowing the baseline numbers.

Analysts expect Apple to sell 75 million iPhones during the final three months of the year, or around 824,000 phones per day. The most optimistic projections for Pixel are for Google to sell 9 million phones during the same time period, or roughly 100,000 phones per day.

Headlines: How do they work? Not well, apparently.

At least Stangel’s has that “kind of” in there. Check out Don Reisinger’s:

“Google Pixel Trounced Apple's iPhone Over the Holiday Weekend.” (No link because that’s just wrong, but another tip o’ the antlers to @designheretic.)

Subtitle?

Google Pixel is the Black Friday king

There just has to be one number that shows a competitor got more of something, anything, to declare Apple the loser. It could probably be returns and someone would try to make it look bad for Apple.

It’s fitting that the top of that piece is obscured by an error message telling the reader to update their Flash player. “We are hopelessly mired in the 1990s. Please send help.”

If you make it as far as paragraph seven, you might be able to sue Reisinger for logical whiplash.

Although analysts don’t expect the Pixel line to match Apple’s iPhone in overall sales…

There’s been a lot of talk recently about us entering a “post-fact” world. If you ask Apple, we’ve been in one for years.

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