Saying goodbye to Apple, forever.

This September, hopefully, I’ll break loose of my last Apple gadget I use on the daily. Ever since the top of 2016, I’ve slowly began to stop using Apple products, and migrate to Android and PC.

 

This last gadget is a fond one, it’s my mid-2013 13 inch MacBook Air. Equipped with an Intel Core i7 4650U, 8 GB of RAM, and a 256 GB SSD that has endured almost 60 TB of writes. It’s been on a plethora of OSes (OS X, Windows 7/8.1/10, Ubuntu 15/Kubuntu 16.10). It was the laptop I began coding Python on, the laptop I started my Minecraft server on. Yet, I’m happy I can break free of this laptop. Every day, when pulling it out of my backpack, I’m inadvertently supporting the Apple brand, something I don’t want to do.

 

Back a few years, Apple was at the top of it’s game. It’s products seemed like they were from the future, and Apple was always on the cutting edge of innovation. Steve wanted products that worked, and he knew how to run Apple. As a result, Apple exploded in popularity, and everyone was soon using iPhones and Macs.

 

These days, Apple isn’t at the forefront of innovation. While Apple might be focused at continuing to rule the mobile industry, the only one it has a monopoly in, at least in the US, it’s actually rolling back innovation, removing useful features, because they want money, to an extent.

 

The iPhone 7, and the headphone jack.

The headphone jack in the iPhone 7 wasn’t removed because of “courage”. It was for the money. If you don’t know, the Lightning port on every iPhone is a patented invention by Apple. Whenever an accessory manufacturer wants to make an accessory that uses the lightning port, they have to pay Apple licensing fees, or they’ll get sued. Ouch.

Here’s the thing. On the iPhone, pre-no-headphone-jack-era, Apple didn’t make any money on accessories plugged into the headphone jack. So, the headphone jack was axed on the iPhone 7. The problem is, now you need dongles to do more than 1 thing with the port.

I’d be fine if Apple added two lightning ports to their phone. But, with 1 port, it’s dongle time. Want to charge your phone and listen to music, dongle! Want to, at least according to Apple: “But if you still want to listen through your old headphones, you can plug them in using a 3.5 mm headphone jack adapter, also included.”.

 

The MacBook Pro, and it’s USB-C ports.

The MacBook Pro is another great case of Apple’s recent lack of innovation. The problem lays within it’s USB-C ports.

Let’s imagine you bought an iPhone 7, and the latest and greatest MacBook Pro. Being the great person you are, you unbox your MacBook Pro, and want to restore your old Mac’s data using your USB 3.0 hard drive.

You’ll need a dongle for that. $19 for a dongle.

Alright, now that you have that dongle a few days later, you get your data restored, and want to sync your iPhone 7 up to your laptop. You have the dongle. That’s all good. But now, you’re 3 days late on uploads to your YouTube channel. You shoot some video with your camera, and need to pull the data off of your SD card.

You’ll need a dongle for that. $49.95 for a dongle.

After waiting another 3 days, and more angry fans, you dig out your Thunderbolt 2 hard drive as a scratch disk for editing. Oh…wait.

You’ll need a dongle for that. $49 for a dongle.

After a total of 9 days, and more lost ad revenue, you want to relax, and use your iPhone 7’s earbuds. Oh…wait. You can’t. No one has a dongle for that. Gotta use the professional headphones tonight.

The next day, you want to use your HDMI monitor to do some editing work. Oh…wait.

You’ll need yet another dongle for that. $69 for a dongle, this time.

 

See what I mean? Not only are you forking over thousands of dollars to Apple just for your laptop, but now, you can’t even use your laptop properly without a shit ton of dongles. This isn’t the future! At least with the iPhone 7, you’re only forking over $40 for another dongle for two lightning ports. And maybe $18 for two spare Lightning to 3.5 mm dongles, too. It’s no wonder I call these products the DongleBook Pro, the iDongle 7, and the DongleBook.

 

It gets worse. That new MacBook Pro you have? It has less battery life than your old MacBook Pro. Certainly a touch of genius, Apple.

 

Apple’s feature problem.

Apple certainly loves to add features that no one wants to their products. Case in point…

The touchbar – No one wanted that. It’s less intuitive than function keys, or just hotkeys in general.

3D touch – No one wanted that, too. Great, I can “force touch” my mail icon to see in detail how many emails I have in each inbox. Wonderful! I can finally get a “quick context” action to posting a tweet!

The butterfly keyboard – While it sounds like a Cherry MX Blue keyboard, the low travel distance was something no one wanted.

 

Yet, people actually want useful features, that iPhones will likely never have, thanks to Apple wanting all the money it can get.

Unlocked NFC – Apple actually gets a kickback on Apple Pay payments (about 0.15%). Unlocking NFC could open up different payment methods that Apple can’t shove their hand in.

Wireless charging – Apple can’t get any money from Qi accessories that would be theoretically used with a wireless-charging enabled iPhone. They’ll add wireless charging, once they find a way to make money with it.

 

A few other notes, before I talk more in-depth.

I’ll keep going, that’s for sure. Apple’s OSes are pretty locked down, aren’t they. Take iOS, there’s little to no customization, at all.

Apple forces you to have your home screen in a 5 row set of icons, no free placement. No customizing control center toggles. No customizing nearly anything. Apple’s mobile OS is severely lacking in useful features, like quick app switching, multi-window, and even picture-in-picture. Siri is worse than Google Assistant, and Apple makes sure that they severely water down any accessory that isn’t theirs. Have you seen Android Wear on iOS?

 

Meanwhile, macOS is just getting stale at this point. Apart from the modern redesign, every time I look at a Mac desktop, it looks the same. No one asked for Siri on their laptop, no one asked for a lot of features that macOS presently has. Yes, great software exists for macOS, and it’s great for creators, but the lack of appealing software, and lack of change makes OS X stale, to me. Furthermore, no one asked for the name change to macOS.

 

Android, on the other hand, is beating Apple, and it’s doing it really well. Android already includes Android Pay, good security, it’s open-source (yay!), runs on the Linux kernel (yay!), and devices with Android last longer, thanks to unofficial support from the community.

Case in point, I have an LG G2 sitting on my desk, that’s 4 years old. It’s running Android 7.1.2, the latest and greatest version of Android, thanks to unofficial support from the community. Yes, the iPhone 5S from 2013 does run iOS 10, but you’ll notice that it runs pretty slow when compared to the G2. Which brings me to another point…

 

Planned obsolescence.

The practice of planning for the obsolescence of a product. I’ll say that Apple does it.

Take the iPhone 4S, and any other device running an A5 chip. It runs iOS 9, which isn’t that old. Yet, the OS runs horribly on them, for one good reason. To prompt older iPhone users to get the latest and greatest phone. I’ll accuse Apple of pushing out updates to devices that can’t handle them, so that the owners of those devices are forced to upgrade to a newer version of their product.

Another real-life example. My first laptop was a MacBook Air late-2010, with a Core 2 Duo, of all things. It kept getting the latest versions of OS X, right up to macOS Sierra. Yet, it ran like complete crap on the laptop, of which my mom uses. It took minutes to perform basic activities, and Apple pushed the device too hard, forcing users of the old laptop to upgrade, because it ran so slow. I ended up putting CloudReady on the laptop, Chrome OS for not Chromebooks, and the laptop runs really well now.

Apple had a sense of ending support for devices before Jobs died. The iPad 1 stopped getting updates at iOS 5.1.1, an appropriate time in my opinion. The iPod touch 4G stopped getting updates at iOS 6.1.6, an appropriate time in my opinion. Yet, somehow, the iPhone 5 is still supported, 5 years later, even though iOS runs slowly on the device.

 

Android fans may say that “oh, well your devices only get a few updates”, and that’s true. But, nearly every manufacturer cuts support when it’s appropriate, albeit for their bloated OS. LG cut updates for the G2 at 5.0.2, in which the phone ran at an acceptable speed, but not stupidly sluggish. Samsung seemed to cut support for their Galaxy S5 at Android 6.0.1, in which the phone ran at a good speed, but again, not stupidly sluggish. Of course, by the time a device reaches the end of manufacturer support, unofficial device support has most likely popped up for that device, in which users can install custom, lighter builds of Android. Effectively, the lifespan of an Android phone goes far beyond the iPhone.

 

A monopoly.

Apple has established a monopoly, at least in the US, where people can afford iPhones, and Macs.

Take my school, in the US. In my grade, about 90% of people use an iPhone, and not surprisingly, about 20% of those iPhones are cracked. I’ll talk more about this later.

The issue is, Apple has a monopoly over teens in the US. iMessage is a thing most teens can’t live without (I can, however. SMS for the win!), and considering Snapchat runs like crap (and that Snap really doesn’t give two shits about Android users) on Android, it’s no wonder teens use iPhones. They’re familiar with it, and they like it.

 

However, the true smarties use Androids, because we actually realize iPhones are complete crap. Androids can do a lot more than iPhones, in regards to customization, among other features. Yes, iPhones are great phones for simple people, but why do teens even use iPhones? Herd, or mob mentality.

 

Herd mentality, or mob mentality, describes how people are influenced by their peers to adopt certain behaviors”. Especially when you talk about teens, people will naturally use iPhones because that’s what everyone else does. They’re afraid they’ll get made fun at because they use Android phones, and they’ll be afraid that they won’t be friends with people because they don’t have iMessage, or FaceTime, theoretically.

 

Meanwhile, Android keeps the ball going on innovation. Samsung’s Galaxy S8 is truly a gorgeous phone, with a design light years ahead of what Apple is doing, and enough features to make an iPhone user faint.

 

iPhone fans can’t really point to a single reason why they have an iPhone. For global class, I decided to poll the class of twelve about why they bought the phone they had (I was the only one in the class who had an Android), along with the next phone they’d buy.

A few notable reasons include:

– Simplicity, people don’t want to learn a new phone!

– People like Apple services!

– Good cameras! Good colors!

 

And this one guy who has an Android said:

“Android has more customization, longer battery, more features, better design/display”

 

I was slightly surprised at the results, myself. The thing is, Android is simple (if you get the Google Pixel), Android phones have better cameras, and Android phones can come in a wide variety of colors.

Oh, and Apple-esk services are available on Android. Google Play Music (with YouTube Red included!), I’ll put it at that.

 

A Mac monopoly.

Did I mention that Apple also has a Mac monopoly? They have one.

 

I get it, people use Macs because you can be “productive” on them, and they have a sturdy design. I’ll agree. My MacBook Air has held up through 4 years of use and abuse.

 

In 2017, the MacBook has turned into a fashion symbol. People get MacBooks because everyone else has them, and it’s a statement, almost. If you have a Mac, and you’re a teen, it tells me a few things, probably.

  1. You probably don’t know what Linux is.
  2. You’re probably spoiled.
  3. You might do something cool.
  4. You like stickers, I see.
  5. You have a MacBook because everyone else does.

 

While I will agree, Macs are great for creative people, with the entire Adobe suite, and Apple’s creative suite, I don’t see much use for them otherwise. Macs are certainly good machines if you do video or photo editing, if you make music, do stuff like that. Otherwise, Macs aren’t for your average Joe. Buy a Dell laptop for $500 and you’ll be happy.

 

The “Cracked iPhone” thing.

I mentioned this earlier, but for some reason, iPhone users don’t get their screens fixed when they crack them. They end up just buying a new phone. Uh, what?

Most Android users, including me, usually get their phones fixed when a cracked screen, or other components crack. When the camera lens on my GS7 cracked (long story), I had a repair appointment in about 7 hours. I usually stay pretty on top of my repairs.

I honestly don’t know why iPhone users don’t repair their screens, well, most of them. I couldn’t bear using a cracked phone, I’d be worried about getting glass shards in my fingers! I tried doing some research online about cracked phones, and I’m not really about to poll people in my school on why they don’t repair their phone.

 

My best conclusion is that most iPhone users are uh, most iPhone users. They don’t feel like getting their screen fixed, because they’re lazy, or because repairs cost too much. I’ll also talk about this soon!

I can remember back to when I visited an Apple store some time ago, and hearing about a cracked screen repair costing $215 for a teen and their iPhone. Maybe that’s why?

 

I can’t really put a finger on why. Either it’s that repairs are too expensive (but then, why buy another phone? That’s 3x as expensive, and requires the same amount of effort!), they’re afraid to tell their parents maybe, I don’t know.

 

Apple hating repair.

Apple, you really hate repair.

See, for the 5% of us who end up self-repairing our phones, Apple generally hates repair. They make repair prices ludicrous, to the point where you might as well just buy a new phone, or laptop. Apple doesn’t want 3rd party repair shops, they want to rake in all the money.

Remember the Error 53 scandal? That wasn’t a diagnostic “thing” left in. Now, with the iPhone 7, replace the home button, and you can’t use it. You have to use AssistiveTouch. Why? For “security reasons”, but I don’t see that being a security problem.

 

I’ll go further in-depth with those crazy repair prices. Apple, for a screen replacement on an out-of-warranty iPhone $129. Galaxy phones cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $160 for a screen replacement for an out-of-warranty phone.

“Owen! iPhones are cheaper!” you may say.

Yes, that’s correct. Because Galaxy phones are much prettier, and the repair process for the LCD is harder, so count those extra bucks towards extra labor time.

 

I’ll give you one more story before I close this section. When I needed to get my Galaxy S7’s camera lens glass fixed, it was going to be $45. Ouch, expensive.

Plot twist. The whole back of the phone was replaced. $45, when apparently my phone was out of warranty (might of been the effect of installing the Nougat beta when I wasn’t an actual nougat beta participant). Pretty cool.

Should of asked for a non-carrier branded back cover, but I didn’t know the whole back would get replaced!

 

A conclusion.

There are more things that make me hate Apple, but I’ll stop here.

 

I use to love Apple. They were the definition of innovation. Nothing came close to them. Not Android, not BlackBerry. You had a BlackBerry if you worked. You had an iPhone, otherwise.

The Macs were the best desktop and laptop line of systems at the time. No viruses. No bloatware. Industrial design. They were truly magnificent machines of power, that anyone could use.

 

Although, Apple lost their magic. Apple has axed useful features from their products, and is going in the wrong direction. Instead of innovating like they use to, they’re making baby steps. Moving backwards. That’s not the Apple I knew.

In January 2016, I moved to Android, and I haven’t regretted that decision one bit. Yes, apps might be a little less stable. Yes, there is no iMessage. But, for all of that, I get a phone that’s more beautiful than the iPhone, does more than the iPhone, and works better than the iPhone. I have all the latest features. And if I had the Exynos variant of the Galaxy S7, I’d get unofficial support.

 

Yes, it’s true. Android phones do indeed have carrier bloat, and less timely updates. Apple phones still have a few features I wish Android phones had. But, those severely outweigh the positives about Android.

 

People who know me are still somewhat shocked about my hatred for Apple. Some say, “Why do you run Windows on your Mac?” (simple answer: I hate OS X with a passion). Some say, “If you hate Apple, why do you still have a Mac?” (simple answer: I’ll get a new laptop when I want to). I don’t want to support Apple.

 

I’m a developer, and Macs are a pain in the ass for people like me. OS X is a horrible platform for developing programs, and the same goes for Windows. Linux is the OS for developers, and Macs don’t run Linux that well. I’m hopefully getting a Dell XPS 13 soon, in September, because it’s a Linux laptop. Dell even offers it with Ubuntu pre-installed.

Edit: I’m realizing this statement was completely wrong.

Macs are actually pretty popular when it comes to developers. Because you need one to build iOS/macOS apps. Yes, VMs do exist, but if you’re using a laptop, VMs are certainly less battery friendly, and it’s really hard to get OS X in a VM, as I’ve been told.

Windows, Linux, and Mac are great for developing certain languages. I said Linux is the OS for developers, as I was generally thinking about more mainstream languages, like Java, JavaScript (and it’s derivatives, like node.js, reactjs, etc.), Python, C (and C++), and other languages like such. What I didn’t think about were the many other languages.

Apple sadly has a monopoly on Swift and Objective C, and developing using Xcode on Apple computers. If you’re making an app, you want iOS and Android compatibility, but you can only code for iOS on Mac OS X. Android Studio is also available on OS X, so you generally pick OS X. Not to mention, installing Windows/Linux VMs on OS X is easy, but not the other way around.

 

In the end, when I made that statement, I was thinking about command-line languages. Those are the easiest to work with on Linux, thanks to easy package managers (1 command and you’ve got the library you need), no fiddling with PATHs, and installing extra stuff is just easy.

Windows is best for developing Microsoft’s stuff, like .NET, Visual Studio, etc.

OS X is best for developing Apple’s stuff, like Swift, Objective C, and maybe Unity/Java.

Linux is the best for developing mainstream languages, like Java/JS, PHP, HTML/CSS, Python, and C/C++.

But, it is still sad to see that Apple had to develop a monopoly with even coding, and where you can code their languages. I mean, I’m not surprised, Apple doesn’t want their users of anything to have any choice whatsoever.

 

I’m sad that Apple had to go the way they did. Apple used to be the company on top, always innovating, but it’s not. I don’t want to support the Apple brand with the glowing Apple logo in class. I feel a slight bit of internal pain, knowing that I’m telling the world that I use an Apple laptop, when I don’t want to. I can’t wait for when I get my XPS 13 (and maybe for a challenge, since I’m getting the Pi-Top this summer, use that until I get my XPS 13 once September rolls around), as that will finally replace the last actively used Apple gadget in my life, if you don’t include my NAS.

 

Apple, bon voyage. It’s been nice knowing you.

And same to you, Microsoft. A new post will come soon.


Site updates:

No new theme? Check.

I’ll need to get around to doing project updating soon. New projects have started, and need updating. I’ll also need to sort out HTTPS issues, one cert per domain. I’ll get to work with that in cron soon.

I was going to shut down a lot of old sites, but life did it’s thing. I’ll be resuming that work in late June, once tests decide to not pester me any more.

 

Upcoming posts? Here’s a brief overview.

  • Saying a partial goodbye to Microsoft. – 6/2017
  • Using a grocery store phone. – 7/2017 (30% chance on this one happening)
  • The Pi-Top Review. – 8/2017
  • Why I think my keyboard is doing the spiral LED animation but it’s not – wait…that’s not coming
  • The XPS 13 Review with Ubuntu – 10/2017
  • How to yell at planes that fly over your house – GO AWAY PLANE PLEASE GO AWAY NOW NOW NOW
  • Probably some other posts about random stuff.

 

Hope this long post was long enough for you to be very satisfied. It took me two hours to write it.

 

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