9to5 Mac reports that while Apple will be opening up iOS to alternate appstores and default browsers, the iPad is not going to get these features. See there is evidently some nuance in the ruling saying that iOS is a gatekeeper but that’s not what the iPad runs, it runs iPadOS.

This feels exactly like a tactic my children use when being asked to clean the bathroom. They clean everything, but then don’t put any of the cleaning supplies away because I didn’t specifically tell them that included putting the supplies away. Or maybe they leave the clothes on the floor from last night because I didn’t specifically tell them that cleaning the clothes up was an included task in cleaning the bathroom.

It Wasn’t Always Like This

Back in the Apple II days this isn’t the Apple we saw. Then Apple stood apart because it didn’t put restrictions on developers, unlike RadioShack which wanted a cut of every piece of software which could only be sold in a RadioShack store. VisiCalc came out first on Apple II, in part because it had the memory footprint to support the application, but also because someone could just write software for the Apple II without checking in with Apple[1].

The first good graphical game for minicomputers (what they called the Apple II at the time) came out in part because of the work Steve Wozniak did to make sure that the graphics were good, but also because no one had to give Apple a cut of the software and no one had to check in with Apple to sell software for the Apple II.

Apple Has Some Good Stuff

I want to like Apple devices. The software is good. The hardware is even good, unless we talk about repairability. My Framework far outperforms the repairability front, but doesn’t have the battery life that a MacBook Air does. The only viable tablet I’ve found is the iPad family of devices from Apple.

Yet watching the moves that Apple continues to make that are customer hostile I get more and more hesitant to purchase future devices from them. I love my iPad and had plans to purchase multiple devices when they release new ones this year, but seeing this decision I hesitate to invest more money in a company that treats its users so poorly and acts like a pouting child all the time.

I look at my M1 Mac Studio and love how fast it is, but put it next to any desktop computer and realise that for the same cost I could get about the same speed, and then when I needed to upgrade something I could spend less than 1/2 as much and get a speed increase. In Apple land I have to purchase an entire new machine to upgrade anything. So much waste is generated by Apple’s computers that solder everything on so that nothing is repairable by any normal technical human.

The decisions from Apple in the last number of years have turned me from an enthusiastic Apple customer into a reluctant Apple customer. If we keep up this trajectory I’ll be a never again Apple customer.

  • [1] https://curtismchale.ca/book/the-apple-ii-age/

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2 responses to “Apple as a Petulant Child”

  1. Guthrie Avatar

    I’m glad you said this. I’ve come to feel very strongly about it, and I was just a big iPad user as many other enthusiasts. It takes some real cognitive dissonance to not realize what an anti consumer, anti developer company they’ve become in some ways. A monster dedicated to revenue. I know it’s natural to become fans of tech and it gets the best of people, simping for a corporation but when I see people arguing how all these choices are good for them as a consumer, I see the party’s over. The dream is gone, no more for me.

    1. Curtis McHale Avatar
      Curtis McHale

      Not sure I’m quite there yet, specifically the iPad is an excellent device that I enjoy using. I’m no longer just going to purchase new Apple stuff though without looking hard at the other options first.