Because of greed

by Volker Weber

I have been disturbed by many of Apple's recent actions. But I could not really get my thoughts on paper, ahem, screen. Today I found somebody who was able to put them down: Wil, who writes the software for delicious monster. Here he compares Apple to Sony:

These are EXACTLY the compromises Sony has been making for years -- and because Sony's music and movie arms have been telling the Sony hardware arm to never do anything new or interesting without building in a ton of customer-unfriendly restrictions, Sony is now completely in the toilet. They have gone from an incredibly respected brand to a complete joke. Every time they introduce some new, crippled standard the industry kind of looks away in embarrassment, like Sony is the oafish guy at the party who is parked in front of the meatballs tray eating directly from the dish.

It does not mean that Wil thinks Apple is as lost as Sony is. In fact he goes on to say:

With almost every device or product Steve has unveiled, he's hit it on the head: "Here's a phone that, like, actually doesn't suck." "Here's a computer that's small, beautiful, powerful, AND cheaper than a similar Dell, and, oh, it runs a better OS." "Now you can run all your Windows games but still own a Mac."

The recent anomalies are just that: these missteps that stand out because they do NOT fit in with what has made Apple so incredibly popular over the last several years.

Also worth a read are the comments:

It speaks to my idiocy that I honestly go on rants like this because I'm upset and I have to write down my thoughts, and it never strikes me that twenty thousand or so people will read the post and that it'll be passed around Apple... I woke up this morning shocked to find my inbox stuffed with responses. Durr.


My point, and I'm sorry I didn't make it clearer, is that treating your customers with respect is just plain good business, long-term. People remember being screwed for a long, long time. Hell, I still remember my first girlfriend. Oh, man, her hips. She could do this thing...

Wait, what the hell were we talking about?

I'll have to remember that one. Anyway, read the whole thing >


Well with the iPhone Apple kind of followed the basic marketing 1o1. The question to raise is, if it's really the best strategy. It may work fine - but does it work best?

Martin Hiegl, 2007-09-21

Published on the same day and in a similar vein Bill Thompson at the BBC: Time for Apple to face the music?

Armin Grewe, 2007-09-21

Sorry, but I don't understand the current excitement about Apple's behaviour. They have always chosen to go down the closed system road - apart from a brief period when they allowed clones of the Mac hardware. Is it really a surprise that the iPhone is tied to one telecom vendor? Or that they will try to close the door on unlocking the iPhone? Or that the new iPods require to be connected to devices with an Apple authentication chip before all the features are enabled? Sure, it would be even nicer if all their products were completely open, but that's never been Apple's game.

I think that despite offering largely closed products, Apple are offering many better alternatives than other vendors. And I am happy to buy Apple gear in those cases. If that changes, I will take a fresh look at the market, and will buy products which I believe best suit my needs. That might mean moving to Linux, it might mean no longer using iPods or an AppleTV or whatever. But because I follow vowe's mantra of avoiding or removing DRM and use office software which is based on non-proprietary standards ( and save other documents in PDF format, I don't really anticipate many problems if I decide to change to a different platform.

John Keys, 2007-09-21

The difference is: With a proprietary Computer system you can still use 90% of the services also from other vendors. The concept of a computer with internet connection is, even if the system itself is a closed shop, an open one. But why do a music phone on which i cannot choose MY music to be used as a ringtoe? Why make a bluetooth-phone which cannot send files by bluetooth to pcs or other phones (when sharp and vodafone had the same restrictions on some phones in 2004, they got really bad press for that)? Why make a interent enabled phone which cannot use video podcasts directly over the air?

Christian Just, 2007-09-22

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.


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