I deliberately distanced myself from the world of iPhones during this time. I didn't want to know about cool apps or interesting ways of using them, it was just too frustrating.
It’s been an interesting experience, to see what has changed during these twenty months. When I got my first iPhone, I was an early adopter in Australia - the iPhone had only been released for a couple of weeks here. Strangers would notice it and strike up conversations with me about it.Now the iPhone is mainstream. There’s nothing special about having one - even some of my more technically challenged relatives have them. For a moment I considered one of the so called iPhone killers, the HTC Desire, which runs on a version of Google’s Android operating system. I had a look at a Desire in a shop - and although it seemed fine, it did not live up to its name and ultimately wasn't very compelling.
I was more of a fan boy of Apple two years ago than I am now. These days I still prefer to use Apple in my home computing and generally wish it well, but there’s an ambivalence growing in me about the company. I’m starting to wonder if Steve Jobs is such a benevolent dictator. Three things have happened this year which have made me uneasy about Apple:
- How Apple attempted to ban Mark Fiore’s iPhone app. This has now been rectified and later described as a mistake, but I wonder what they considered to be their mistake? What is attempting to stifle satire about politicians and the political process, or was it that they banned the wrong person - a Pulitzer prize winner with a profile high enough to cause embarrassment to Apple?
- Apple’s hostility to Flash. Apple says it’s just about the technology, but the effect of its poor relationship with Adobe is having a wider impact.
- The allegation that Apple has discouraged music labels from making special promotions with one of its competitors, Amazon’s online music store.
I’m finding that many Apps are better developed and more useful than they were in 2008. It's nice to be able to copy & paste text.
In hindsight, I wish I had been able to have my iPhone replaced shortly after I lost it twenty months ago. But I didn’t. My new iPhone is a better model than the one which I lost. So why doesn't it seem as good?