8 Reasons to HATE Apple products

My impression of Apple products – iPhones & iPads alike is kind of like my impression of Starbucks – it’s a hell of a fashion statement attracting yuppies and middle-aged professionals alike, and for that people are will to pay a premium price regardless of the product’s superiority – or not. The whole ‘Apple ecosystem’ might work for some people or entire families who are happy to be locked in to the Operating System, software and Apps, and anecdotal evidence seems to indicate that these ‘great’ features and sexy styling outweigh the need for flexibility, expandability and parity pricing. But here’s some of the irks I have with Apple products where rationality prevails:

The Lightning Connector

Apple products use a proprietary connector on their phones and iPads – the patented lightning connector. If you needed a replacement you could only get an expensive OEM or a costly replica (non-OEM manufacturers would be hit with a licensing fee). Most other device manufacturers like Samsung, LG, Nook and HTC have standardized on USB, so you wouldn’t have to go too far or pay too much to replace a lost or damaged cable. In fact you could easily pick up one at the Dollar Tree!

The App Store

Once you have an Apple device you’re pretty much locked into using the App Store to obtain all of your apps (Android devices can enjoy selecting from several markets like the Google Play Store, Amazon Appstore, Mobango). Worse still, when signing in for the first time at the App Store you are required to enter your credit card information (for your convenience???). Sure I’ve been pointed to a workaround but let’s remember that it’s a workaround.

Apple-only File System

The Apple file system itself is proprietary so it’s not as simple to plug in your device to a PC and expect drive letter access. Related to that is that the Media library only works with iTunes so I couldn’t just dump my videos and music to some custom folder of my choice and select a player of my choice to go with it. I’ve found out that you could indeed get a custom media player but then the media files themselves have to be exclusively associated with the app!

No External Memory Cards

You can’t add a memory card to Apple devices, and you have to pay a large premium for a device with higher memory. The price increment is nowhere close to what you’d pay for an SD card of the incremental capacity. For example, at the time of writing (Feb 2015), the 128GB iPad mini 3 was selling at $599 at the Apple Store and the 16 GB model at $399, a full $200 difference. Now Amazon has a 128GB high-speed micro-SD card that you could pop into your Samsung device for the non-sale price of $75. The math’s straightforward. Explains a bit of Apple’s recently reported 39% product margins.

Changing the Battery

Need to change your Apple device’s battery? Um, you can’t open an Apple device; once again you’d have to go back to Apple (or an authorized service provider) to get them to install one for you at a price. If you did open it yourself or get a back-door repair shop to do it, sure as heck you’d lose your warranty.

No GPS

This may be a model-specific issue but my Apple iPad’s lack a GPS in its base offering. My 2 year old Samsung’s do, and they cost half as much as the Apple originally did.

Overpriced

I don’t think it takes a lot of searching to find out that Apple devices and apps are overpriced compared to its competitors for the same functionality and features. There’s no single feature on an iPad or iPhone that can warrant the at least 20-25% cost over, say, equivalent Samsung products. But as I’ve mentioned before, the loyal Apple fans don’t seem to mind the premium with claims of it to be more stable, easier to use and stylish.

Hardly the Technology Pacesetters

Lastly, I fail to see evidence of Apple being leaders or pacesetters in technology. Lawsuits, yes, innovation, no. OK, I'll give them the jog wheel that we had in the iPod over a decade ago which was pretty cool but let’s get over it now. For sure it was NOT the first portable media playing device in the world. The iPad? No, tablet PCs were around for a while before that, as were media-playing cellphones are early versions of Smartphones well before the iPhone hit the market. Nor is the iWatch fever warranted (slated for launch next month), with the Samsung Galaxy gear almost at its third generation in the Spring.