When will Apple become the new Microsoft ?

In some techies minds, Microsoft is a swear word. Using Vista is giving on to the dark side whilst using Internet Explorer "only perpetuates Microsofts dominance of the market". Microsoft are scorned for having to "patch" their software frequently whilst people ask why it is that Microsoft sells us software that is essentially broken and need repairing straight away.

But mention the company name Apple, and nobody bats an eyelid. Why ? Apple, after all, do exactly what Microsoft do, but worse. They use software for their iPods that really does not like working with other media players, they use file formats that do not work on all devices, they launch
- iPod Nanos where the screen scratches or cracks (which they replace a few weeks later). Oh, and it's not an urban myth. Read HERE, HERE & HERE .
- iPod Mini's where the battery dies very quickly (which they eventually agree to replace some months later.
- iPod Nanos which replace the old ones where the battery overheats to a dangerous level.
- iPhone 3Gs that are launched with major faults that require a patch just a few days later.

And all this in an MP3 player market that has become dominated by Apple. yet do people speak out against Apple ? No, because they are "cute and cuddly".

Actually, Apple and Microsoft are very very similar. The only difference is that Microsoft are getting better (could they have got any worse ?) whilst Apple are getting worse.

Update : The number of sad "anonymous" comments from Mac users, nearly all American, using phrases akin to "The Shermanator" in the film American Pie, sending torrents of abuse because I dared to liken Apple to MS is hilarious. What a sad bunch of techie geeks Apple users can be. Oh, by the way, cut out the abuse and I'll publish the comments, keep being abusive and I'll delete it. After all, it takes me less time to click on delete than it does for you to write the comment.


Anonymous said...


John Davis said...

When will Apple become the new MS?

Probably never. The focus of the two companies is entirely different. Apple innovates or creates and ...

But I don't think that's what you mean, is it?

Probably you mean to imply that they have become the same in the sense of pushing out poorly designed products at too early a stage in their design for them to be functional.

And you base this opinion on several urban legends.

"scratchy screens" They do scratch if you keep your iPod in the same pocket as your keys, monkey wrenches and other metal objects.

"iPod Nanos with dying batteries or batteries overheating" In a limited sense, true, but Apple does replace faulty products.

"iPhone 3G major faults" You said it yourself - it was patched a few days later - days, not weeks, months or years. And development continues at a very rapid pace.

I think you are misreading the signs. This is the phenomena of a small to medium sized company that has suddenly got big. Apple has created more than it can deal with. It won't be a problem for long. You're not going to have to "learn to live with it" as we did with MS.

As I said, the focus is different.

Apple's purpose is to create the best computing experience possible, to create something that enhances a person's life.

MS's purpose is to make money.

John Davis

Boo said...

"Actually, Apple and Microsoft are very very similar. The only difference is that Microsoft are getting better, Apple are getting worse."

Hope springs eternal for 2 digit MacSux T-shirt wearing PC gamer/haters.

Cheer-up, loser. Microsoft is getting better! Soon you'll have Winblows 7, and the ZunePhone! Your beautiful Microsoft life will be perfect!

Anonymous said...

Your on drugs right? Have you looked on a site like MacSurfer. Count up the number of pro-Apple stories, count up the number of anti-Apple stories. The number of anti-Apple stories is overwhelming. Talk to an anyone in IT, I have even had an IT person say that he would rather quit the IT business than service an Apple product. Microsoft get savaged because they are crap, Apple gets savaged because people expect better out of them.

Anonymous said...

The scratchy screens were not an urban myth.

Brett said...

Apple and Microsoft are both companies in business to make a profit. The difference is that Apple products are usually better designed in terms of being less awkward, and more fun to use than Microsoft products.

Because Apple makes bold design decisions which challenge the status quo, they have always been a lightning rod of controversy. They have made their share of mistakes, no doubt. And because of their limited product range, Apple does not have products that suit everyone's needs.

Nevertheless, a growing number of people find Apple's computers, gadgets, and software suitable for their purposes.

Another way that Apple has been different than Microsoft is that it's success has generally been due to the actual excellence of its products rather than by occasional dirty business dealings, and exploitation of the herd mentality.

The iPod is an exceptional case in that unlike other Apple products, this iPod has actually come to dominate its market. In this respect there are some similarities with Microsoft's domination of the PC OS market. As with competing operating systems, there are some "barriers to entry" for would-be competitors. For those iPod owners considering switching to non-Apple music player, any copy-protected music purchased from the iTunes store would require repurchasing the music in a different format, or a laborious process of burning a CDR and re-ripping the music. Ironically, it was the record industry's requirement that Apple include copy-protection that caused this lock-in. Furthermore, anyone who ripped their CDs to Apple's default format of AAC rather than MP3 (which is a selectable option in iTunes) might discover that not all competing players support AAC, despite the fact that AAC is not an Apple-proprietary format, and is generally better sounding than MP3 for any given bit-rate. Apple shouldn't be blamed for this.

I would mention that the iPod was successful even in the face for the supposedly more open family of players supporting Microsoft's now defunct "Plays For Sure" music format.

Note to Anonymous: IT people have traditionally eschewed Apple because: 1) They'd rather not have to learn to support anything new and different. And 2) Apple's whole philosophy of making computers easy to use, configure, and administer threatens, to some extent, their very reason for existence. However, just as many former MS-Windows users have discovered the joys of Macintosh computers, even IT people are finally starting to warm up to Apple.

Anonymous said...

You can't be serious Rich... no really?
Anyone who quotes El Reg as a source is off his rocker. They make a living out biting the hand that feeds...
Oh, and have you seen the latest satisfaction figures for mac products - they're off the scale and a full 12% higher than the next computer maker, Dell.
....so you are right there too. Not.

Anonymous said...

This past weekend we were visitng friends who are confirmed Apple users. They had offered us the use of their old (2007 vintage) Hewlett Packard laptop because they had since replaced it with an Apple laptop because Apples are far superior. They did mention that the Apple had cost £1800!! My wife doesn't like borrowing expensive items in case something goes wrong and offered to buy the HP. They agreed to a price of £100 for what is essentially a year old laptop that only has had a few months of use.

So they are so fanatical about apple that they were happy to pay probably three to four times the price of their HP, and are so blinded by their Apple-fanaticism that they only value a perfectly good year-old laptop at £100.

I'm pretty sure this love of Apple products is a sickness.