Sorry for the long title, but I recently came across a post on Boing Boing Gadgets that discussed exactly how I feel about Apple, and why anyone who read my previous posts about Apple shouldn’t consider me an Apple-hater.
That’s the direct link to the blog in question. It’s a long read, but well worth it for anyone who cares about Apple, technology, or portable music and movies. It’s exactly how I feel, but put to much better words that I could have ever written myself. The gist of it is that Apple needs to quit the anti-consumer crap or else they’ll lose their consumers. They can only go so far on the people who blindly follow their every move before those people lose the blinders and realize that Apple is screwing them over big time, which is what Apple has started to do, though it first started with the iPod/iTunes thing when they first released the iPod. I won’t call it anti-competitive behavior, though some of it is. I’ll call it anti-consumer behavior.
The long version of this is the following… Things like locking out third party apps from the iPhone and iPod Touch (though you can write them if you’re close to Apple) are what I’m talking about here. Preventing people from playing DRM’d (but something other than FairPlay, such as PlaysForSure) music and movie files on the iPods. Preventing people from playing FairPlay songs on other portable devices. It sounds like I hate Apple whenever I complain about their products and the tight grasp they hold over all of it, but the fact remains that I want to like their products. I think the iPod is a cool looking device and the iPod Touch is a great device (though I will never buy an iPhone because I wouldn’t be able to dial with one hand while not looking at it because I can’t actually feel the “buttons”). I think MacOS X is a kick ass operating system and their computers have a great design. I don’t like that you can’t replace the battery in the iPods or iPhone yourself, that it has to be done by an authorized technician. I don’t like that MacOS X will not run natively on hardware that was not approved by Apple. I don’t like that Apple hardware is so closed. You buy an Apple computer and it’s a very closed proprietary system even though the operating system was based off one of the most open operating systems in existence. While it’s nice that if something goes wrong with the computer, it’s either really easy to fix or you know it has to go back to Apple. But that’s the problem, it has to go back to Apple. There’s no real customization. For all the proprietary crap in Windows, it’s a more open system. It runs on all sorts of different pieces of hardware (so long as it’s all x86 architecture). It allows all sorts of different drivers and software. With Apple computers, it’s Apple’s hardware and software or nothing.
And the biggest thing that I don’t like about Apple is that they’ve seemed to have left their computer division in the dust. They’re ignoring the people who kept them from folding… the people who religiously bought Apple computers regardless of how bad they sucked. They’ve become a gadget company.
So for all you people who have read my blog and though of me as an Apple Hater, that’s just not true. I want to love them, but I can’t because of the company. Steve Jobs is great at marketing, but he’s arrogant and soon enough that arrogance will catch up with him. Apple has become just like Microsoft, the company everyone loves to hate. They’re in it for the money and nothing else. They just don’t care about their consumers, and why should they when their consumers swoon over everything that comes out of Steve Jobs’s mouth? So again, it’s not Apple that I hate, it’s the uninformed consumer who thinks Apple is and never will be (or never could be) an evil corporation like Microsoft.