Thursday, July 17, 2008

Reasons to Avoid Buying the iPhone?

Not everyone is a fan of the new iPhone:
  • iPhone completely blocks free software. Developers must pay a tax to Apple, who becomes the sole authority over what can and can't be on everyone's phones.
  • iPhone endorses and supports Digital Restrictions Management (DRM) technology.
  • iPhone exposes your whereabouts and provides ways for others to track you without your knowledge.
  • iPhone won't play patent- and DRM-free formats like Ogg Vorbis and Theora.
Read the whole thing.

I partially agree with some of the points in this post. I do think Apple can be far too proprietary and can even be quasi-malicious towards their customers when they don't behave the way Apple wants. Still, I think the marketplace is much better having Apple in it. Most of these complaints are ones that the average customer really doesn't care much about. Most consumers simply want a phone/pocket computer that works. Despite some problems with initial activation, the iPhone succeeds brilliantly at this. It also raises the expectations consumers have for the capabilities of this type of device, forcing competitors to come out with new technologies of similar features.

Despite the frustrations Apple's business practices create for some people, by raising the bar and showing what is possible with technology, Apple is revolutionizing mobile computing with the iPhone. If you think of what similar systems could do with this as a scalable platform (putting the iPhone's operating system and software into tablet PCs and mini-laptops for example), you can start to get a picture of how the iPhone can be a real game changer for the computer industry.

I don't know if I will or will not eventually get an iPhone, but I am incredibly impressed by the technological achievements it represents and somewhat frustrated by the way Apple keeps their platform closed and tightly controlled. The iPhone seems to be a fantastic piece of technology and could be even better with a little more openness on Apple's part.

Lifehacker shares more thoughts here.

1 comment:

Shawn said...

i love it...but I won't get one, mainly because i'm spoiled by my sprint SERO rate plan.

that said, I will likely be getting an HTC touch pro, which probably owes 90% of its existence to the competition imposed by apple on HTC.