Time for Apple to get its act together over the iPhone

Time for Apple to get its act together over the iPhone

Summary: Apple needs to draw a line under the bad publicity surrounding the iPhone.

SHARE:
42

I have to agree with Alex Eckelberry (president of Sunbelt Software) on this one:

Following on my previous rant, iPhone Elite (a development group that’s spun off of the unofficial “iPhone Dev Team”) has posted instructions on how to unbrick an iPhone (via InfiniteLoop).

While it’s certainly doable for anyone with a modicum of technical expertise (and written for that audience), one can only wonder about average users (for whom it could be argued that Jean François Champollion had an easier time deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphics).

...

This is ludicrous. Apple, please figure out a way, tacitly or explicitly, to unlock the damned phone so people can get on with things — and please stop bricking phones. Your contract with AT&T is not nearly as important as your goodwill and market opportunity.

Alex is spot on here.  Now that there are documented way to unbrick iBricks, this whole line about the unlocking process causing damage to the hardware comes off as a total load.  Sure, people need to take responsibility for altering their device, but I doubt that we'd be seeing this level of apathy if it was Microsoft bricking devices.  From where I'm sitting, the whole iBricking fiasco sounds both deliberate and malicious and it's time for Apple to draw a line under the issue and move on.  All this bricking and unfriendliness to third-party apps just doesn't make long-term sense.

Is it customers that matter or protecting revenue streams?

Thoughts?

Topics: Telcos, Apple, CXO, iPhone, Mobility

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

42 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • I believe that the iPhone is still under development

    Considering that the iPhone is still new on the the market (and
    Apple is still new to the mobile phone business) I believe that
    Apple is still finalizing the OS. When that is done I wouldn't be
    surprised to see the SDK released, but I don't expect to see it
    before then.

    If the development of the OS causes problems with "non stock"
    iPhones Apple will probably to continue to warn users, but they
    won't change their roadmap for the OS development. That means
    a wise user will hold off up new versions until the good folks that
    provided the hacks come up with new hacks. Hopefully they will
    also come up with the code that saves your hacked apps to your
    computer, returns your iPhone to "stock" and reinstalls your apps
    and data after you upgrade your iPhone.

    As for unlocking - I don't see Apple doing that, except when they
    ar required to. They'll stick to the ATT agreement and all
    requirement in it. Again, look to the good folks that opened your
    phone to take care of you during the updating process.
    Ken_z
  • Apple has to do somthing

    Like it or not, they made a deal with AT&T.
    Think of how many partners Apple will need in the future. Music labels, movie studios, TV networks, you name it. Digital content means working with the content providers.
    If Apple shows it is willing to cut its partners throat ( or allow its users to ), how many others are going to partner with Apple?

    It isn't a fun situation for anyone.
    mdemuth
    • I think you've stumbled on the real source of the complaining

      It's Apple's competition, i.e. those who are not partners with Apple, that are blowing
      these issues up in the media.

      I haven't met any iPhone users who are complaining. And there are over 1 million
      users. You'd think with over 1 million users, we wouldn't only be hearing about these
      grand problems exclusively from blog sites.

      The elite bloggers and competitors are swift-boating Apple.
      YinToYourYang-22527499
      • No, entirely wrong

        It's not the competition causing issues.
        It's the faithful getting a good shot of reality that are making the noise. Well, most of it anyway.

        And you once again willingly miss the point. It is the companies that might want to partner with Apple that Apple is attempting to impress. If they screw over AT&T, they will find their options few and far between.
        mdemuth
        • Consider this Blog

          To my knowledge, Adrian doesn't own an iPhone. He's responding to another
          blogger who, to my knowledge, also doesn't have an iPhone. You're responding to
          them. Do you have one?

          Anecdotally, those who do have iPhones are very happy with them. Bricking is not
          an issue. Some of them have chimed in on this thread. You might do better to
          listen to those with actual experience. They are almost universally thrilled with the
          device. Do you consider third hand uninformed opinion better than first hand
          experience?

          No, I don't think that much of the noise is not coming from the "faithful". The
          small amount that is, has been amplified through this echo chamber and others to
          an absurd degree. You're going to have to cite your sources for this discontent.
          When contented iPhone users are posting within this very forum, I'll chose to cite
          that.

          AT&T has Apple over a barrel? Do you think that jives with unprecedented
          kickback payments to Apple for the right to carry this device?

          The competition doesn't have to be causing the noise for this to look like endless
          hand wringing sessions, envy, and a misguided sense of entitlement.
          Harry Bardal
          • Eliquent if misguided

            or an outright lier.
            Yes, I personally know 1 person who returned the iPhone, sick of how Apple has treated it customers. And no, they wouldn't have modded it in a million years. Just not the type.

            'Anecdotally', a vast majority of people who have Windows enjoy the experience. Of course, not what you state time and again. Nice to see you take 3'rd hand BS to heart when it suits. Its about all your arguments are made of.

            AT&T? No, Apple is worried more about those it will need to work with in the future. What movie studio or network would work with a company that sat back saying 'well, I'm making money so screw you' to those it works with in good faith.
            mdemuth
          • Two Birds

            To both you and none none:

            I am a Windows user and license owner. I use 2 platforms. Sorry if that blows your
            mind, or if you see it as mutually exclusive to my criticism, but I'm someone who
            prefers to have an informed opinion. I personally know 1 person who broke his
            neck on a tire swing, its not been a convincing argument on behalf of paralysis.
            You might have to come up a couple more.

            Anyone who has a problem with the iPhone or Apple should return the Phone. 1
            down, 999,999 to go.

            I respond to Blogs that cite issues with UAC, WGA, Stealth Updates, disrupted
            productivity... the list goes on. If they enjoy Windows, they are not enjoying those
            aspects of Windows. If you are mapping Windows use directly to "enjoyment" I
            think you're mistaken. If you disagree, I'm sure you'd extend the same courtesy to
            me and map iPhone "enjoyment" to its rate of adoption.

            When you argue on behalf of market share, you bind your views to a capricious
            marketplace. It will turn on a dime and take your arguments with it. It will noot be
            my argument to lose. I'll choose the singular personal experience to be the criteria
            for success. We'll simply agree to disagree. Watch me do it without having to call
            you a liar.

            "Liar" is spelled with an "a" by the way.

            Orange in France, O2 in England. Sorry, but I'm not seeing Apple being blacklisted
            just yet.
            Harry Bardal
          • Re: Consider this Blog

            [i]To my knowledge, Adrian doesn't own an iPhone. He's responding to another
            blogger who, to my knowledge, also doesn't have an iPhone. You're responding to
            them. Do you have one?[/i]

            Hey, sounds just like when you trash Windows!


            [i]When contented iPhone users are posting within this very forum, I'll chose to cite
            that.[/i]

            Oh shut up! There are far more contented Windows users in this fourm than iBrick users, but that doesn't stop you from trashing their OS platform.

            As obnoxious as your posts are I have said nothing because I don't use Windows and at least you were internally consistent. But this defense of Apple justs puts a stink on your attacks on Windows. Pot, kettle, black.


            :)
            none none
    • Re: Apple has to do somthing

      [i]If Apple shows it is willing to cut its partners throat ( or allow its users to ), how many others are going to partner with Apple?[/i]

      Are you kidding? How many partners' throats did Microsoft slit? MS screwed more partners just with Plays fer Sure than Apple has partners.

      But when you're the 800-lb gorilla in a space, people will partner with you because they have to.

      Apple is that gorilla in this space, and screwing AT&T will not shorten the line of suitors at the door.



      :)
      none none
  • RE: Time for Apple to get its act together over the iPhone

    Is it customers that matter or protecting revenue streams?
    It's childish question. For every business it's about protecting revenue streams.
    Of course if you upset and loose your customer it will not provide any revenue for you.
    But it's money driven.

    Jurek
    jmundala@...
    • Of course, it's money driven. But, not how you mean.

      Any company that disregards its contracts gets sued.

      I understand that the numbers of people affected by being "bricked" is very small,
      but vocal. It is totally comprised of stupid people who updated despite the
      warnings and have a sense of entitlement that bad things are not supposed to
      happen to them.

      The "Elite development team for iPhone 1.1.1" say that bad code in the early
      versions of the "AnySIM application" bricked people's iPhones, not Apple's update.

      Apple does not have to know or care if the AnySIM app is on your iPhone. It is not
      supposed to be there according to your warranty. That is the owner's
      responsibility.
      UrbanBard
  • RE: Time for Apple to get its act together over the iPhone

    Whatever. I refuse to buy the iPhone anyway. Locking me into a carrier that, in my opinion, REALLY SUCKS, makes the iPhone look very unattractive. I'll wait until AT&T's contractual monopoly on the iPhones have expired and I can choose a different carrier. I'm guessing the inflated plan rates will drop by then too.
    wolfsouls
    • Great, wait five years.

      Never buy a product if you cannot live under the conditions is sold under.
      UrbanBard
  • legal contracts, with likely, multi-million dollar penaties...

    might mean nothing to you and your buddy Alex, but they probably mean a lot to Apple and to their stock holders.

    [i]..Your contract with AT&T is not nearly as important as your goodwill and market opportunity.[/i]

    you actually agree with that moron? that is up there with the stupidest things i've heard in a while.. this guy's an idiot... LOL

    c'mon this is not about 3rd party apps i don't think Apple really gives a rat's a$$ about 3rd party apps... this is about unlocking iPhones... step one in iPhone the unlocking process is installing software on the phone, so unfortunately this cannot be allowed for now. call your boys over at the iPhone Dev Team and thank them for being so loud and conspicuous in their unlocking efforts and ruining Apple's ability to allow 3rd party apps.. and basically screwing everyone over.

    and again Apple didn't brick anyone's phone the morons that installed an unnecessary, no compulsorily update even after being warned by the installer that it would more than likely brick their phones if their phone was hacked. they bricked their own phones. only a complete idiot presses install after a warning like that! obviously Apple is playing as nice as it can... they could have just said nothing, but they did press releases and put an alert in the installer... some idiot were just too stupid to take a hint.. hmmmm... why don't i just wait a few weeks and see how this plays out.
    doctorSpoc
    • One point-

      [b]might mean nothing to you and your buddy Alex, but they probably mean a lot to Apple and to their stock holders.

      [i]..Your contract with AT&T is not nearly as important as your goodwill and market opportunity.[/i][/b]

      I think that nearly all stock holders like to see market opportunities being taken when they have lucrative prospects. That is why stock prices tend to go up when new ventures are announced. In addition, public perception of a company and it's product has a lot to do with stock prices. Not to mention sales.

      Now, as for how many average users even care...that's another post. I have a sensation that it only matters to a vocal minority.

      :)
      laura.b
    • Re: legal contracts, with likely, multi-million dollar penaties...

      [i]step one in iPhone the unlocking process is installing software on the phone, so unfortunately this cannot be allowed for now.[/i]

      I'm really having a hard time understanding that attitude. The iPhone is a computing machine. A Dell Inspiron is a computing machine. If Dell had a deal with Microsoft that caused it to "not allow" Dell computing machine owners to install Open Office or Firefox, would that be OK, too?

      What theory of... anything obliges people to refrain from modifying or tinkering with their own computing machines?


      :)
      none none
  • Double Standards

    iPhone owners depend on Apple to defend them from malware attacks, the
    mechanism for this would be a firmware update that will bend over backwards to
    maintain the phone's original value proposition. Apple has too defend against
    unlocking for the same reason they have to defend against malware. This is not
    negotiable folks, you can't open the phone just because the intentions are good, it
    leaves users unprotected when intentions go bad. Haven't we learned this lesson
    yet?

    Why do hobbyist's demand the world owes them a living? Upon purchase, the
    device is your property within the terms of usage. Apple has to define and defend
    these terms so there is no confusion as to what is their responsibility if something
    goes wrong. Why would we begrudge them this? These are not "stealthy updates".
    The device will deliver the functionality it was sold with, a device that has been
    tampered with falls outside this contract.

    This device will be managed, and if you're not happy with that, don't buy it.
    Harry Bardal
    • Thank you for setting the record straight

      Either the complainers are masochists, or naive, or competitive subversives.

      Personally, I think most of them are subversives, who, for whatever motive, are swift-
      boating Apple. The net affect is to stir up FUD.

      The fact that ZDNet writes trolling articles like this just puts them in the same
      column--Microsoft subversives.
      YinToYourYang-22527499
  • The vocal minority?

    Why is there so much attention to the vocal minorities who want to use a product for purposes that are not intended or legal? What is the agenda here?

    I (and everyone I personally know with iPhones) use it the way it is intended and it works just fine. We normal USERS are very satisfied, as it is a pleasure to use. For me, I use it because it makes me money and saves me time.

    More attention should be paid to those who are using their iPhones as intended...and not to the vocal few who are determined to tinker, modify, hack, destroy, envy and criticize this remarkable new product.

    The iPhone is driving change in phones, features, manufacturers, carriers, pricing, consumer law, unlocking, subsidies and corporate practices...for the ultimate benefit of all consumers.
    hardmanb
    • Voice of Reason

      Thanks for a breath of fresh logic. It would seem that those who don't own iPhone
      are critical of it, those that do are happy as clams. Who to believe?

      Criticisms of iPhone increasingly look like envy. Are they criticisms of the device?
      Or is it hand wringing?

      How is "the option" of buying this device so offensive? How has the release of this
      device become a catalyst for entitlement? How does this do anything but improve
      the competitive landscape? One can only come to the conclusion that the
      indignation that relates to "non-use" has nothing to do with the actual phone?it
      has to do with being denied access to the platform. Windows Mobile is available
      for those folks, so where's the beef?

      The iPhone provides a number of services, a "career" isn't among them.
      Harry Bardal