published by Chand Bellur – September 27, 2020 at 3:19 p.m.
- I switched from Windows to the Macintosh 11 years ago, as I believed Apple created superior hardware and software than the Microsoft ecosystem.
- The last two Macs I purchased, an iMac and MacBook Pro, both broke to the point of complete failure within 18 months, despite being handled with exceptional care.
- As bad as the Mac has become, Apple’s monopolistic stranglehold on iOS and iPadOS makes it difficult for me to continue supporting the company.
- In September of 2020, I switched back to Windows for my daily driver, abandoning the Mac, other than to research articles.
Dan Ricco Ruined the Macintosh
Bob Mansfield may not be a household name, but he’s a hero to me. Under his leadership, he transformed the Macintosh from a relatively unknown device to a computer with consumer appeal.
Mansfield era Macs are robust, well-built, and last for years. I still have my 2009 Mac Pro — the first Macintosh I purchased. It isn’t perfect. The device didn’t come with WiFi, and adding it cost $300 more. That was my first taste of Apple’s absurdity. They released a computer in 2009 that didn’t ship with WiFi. Mansfield wasn’t perfect, but without his leadership, the absurdity became worse.
Mansfield left the company, and the Macintosh eventually fell under Dan Riccio, the iPad lead. Although his motives are unclear, it appears as though he desired to turn the Macintosh into an iPad.
Obsessed with thinness, the MacBook line of notebook computers underwent three iterations of the deeply flawed butterfly keyboard mechanism. His Ahab-like fixation with thinness also ended up giving the MacBook a defective display cable. MacBook owners who opened and closed their notebook too many times would see screen artifacts or experience complete display failure.
My own MacBook Pro faced a complete and total battery and power IC failure after only 20 charge cycles. Aware of the fragile keyboard, I purchased a keyboard protector and used a wireless keyboard. This Mac was literally on a pedestal and was rarely touched, but it still broke.
I took it into the Apple Store, and they wanted over $700 to repair it after the customer service representative assured me it must be a defect that they’d fix for free. Their phone-based CSRs will shepherd you into the store, where you will face Apple’s extortion geniuses.
The “genius” fudged my almost-brand new Mac’s condition at the Apple Store, claiming it had signs of wear. For all of these reasons, and general disgust with the company, I just left my MacBook Pro at the store. It’s not worth fixing. It’s not even worth picking up. It’s the second-worst product I have ever purchased in my life.
The worst product I ever purchased in my life was the 27″ iMac I gave to my mom. At the time, I preferred macOS to Windows and figured she would too. A Windows user her whole life, she hated macOS from the get-go. She barely used the machine in deference to her old Lenovo all-in-one, which I moved to the kitchen. Nonetheless, after only six months, the delicate Fusion drive failed. With Apple Stores closed down, this useless piece of garbage has been sitting in a box since April.
Dan Riccio is responsible for these and all of the other defective Macs sold to unwitting Apple customers. I think these are the worst computers ever made, and Apple should terminate Riccio immediately. Even my $140 Linux netbook lasted ten years. Every low budget Dell I’ve owned has lasted at least four years. Apple’s low quality is inexcusable.
OSX and macOS Usage Still Low
The Macintosh was never really a flagship product. Soon after Jobs’ reinvented, translucent iMac entered the world, the iPod eclipsed it. The Mac has always enjoyed a cult following, with Windows being the mainstay of both corporate and home computing.
Apple is relatively silent about Mac sales and other aspects of their business. The quiet usually indicates that a particular product, service, or profit center isn’t performing well.
Examining operating system market share, it’s clear that while Mac usage has grown, it’s been relatively slow. In early 2009, the Macintosh accounted for a mere 3.68% market share. Today, macOS accounts for almost 17% market share; however, that’s not the kind of growth that keeps Apple profitable.
Windows still makes up over 77% of the worldwide desktop operating system market. An amusing artifact shows the “unknown” operating system category outshining macOS in November 2018. macOS market share is so low that even a statistical anomaly can beat it.
Apple’s inability to grow the Mac is partly due to a vicious cycle of neglect. When the iPhone exploded, Apple essentially abandoned the Mac. The forgotten Mac wasn’t attractive to consumers, which gave Apple all the more reason to ignore it. The resulting neglect produced some of the worst Macs ever.
Apple Products Are More Complicated and More Defective
Riccio’s tenure at Apple was disastrous for the Mac; however, he alone did not foul the iconic computer brand. Apple’s products have also become more complicated. As complexity increases, so do defects. Today’s Mac has many more features; some implemented haphazardly as resources shifted from the Mac to the iPhone.
The Touch Bar is a perfect example of a feature compromising Mac quality. It’s a gimmick and a way for Apple to save face, as they stubbornly refuse to add a touch screen to the Mac. The feature also introduced more complexity and problems. Googling Touch Bar issues, it’s clear that this seemingly simple accouterment caused more problems than it solved.
Apple seems to have strayed away from rational and useful designs, opting for superfluity and fluff. Leaving customers to churn in the wake, these new features aren’t endearing, yet they’re somehow enduring. It appears that Apple’s groupthink won’t allow them to abandon failed ideas like the butterfly keyboard mechanism and the Touch Bar. Although Apple finally jettisoned the former (after too many years), the latter seems to be an unpopular fixture.
It’s Not Just Me
I’m not the only one who has had severe problems with Riccio-era Macs. Prominent YouTuber Casey Neistat must purchase MacBooks frequently because they keep breaking. If you’re a wealthy YouTuber and you prefer to use a Mac, no problem. Just buy a new one when it breaks and write it off as an expense. There’s Apple Stores all over the world for the wealthy to purchase new machines. If you’re part of the hoi palloi, $1200 or more is a lot of money to spend every few weeks. People like me are better off with Windows.
If you have a MacBook that works and lasts for a long time, consider yourself lucky. Hang on to it for dear life. If you have one of the older Macs from the Mansfield days, you should keep it for as long as possible. Don’t fool yourself into believing that Apple makes a decent Macintosh anymore.
Apple is a Bad Company Now
Look beyond all of the faux-progressive, multi-ethnic marketing hype, and you’ll see Apple for what it is — a rotten corporation only concerned with profits. Their innovative days behind them, this large and latent corporation profits mostly from abusing monopoly.
Apple’s anti-competitive practices haven’t gone unnoticed. Tech companies like Epic Games, Spotify, Tile, and others formed the Coalition for App Fairness specifically to address issues with the App Store.
The group has no qualms with Google or Microsoft, as both companies allow sideloading apps from the web. If you have an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, however, you can only install apps from the App Store. This is the very definition of monopoly!
Although macOS still allows users to sideload apps from the web, it’s not easy. Apple’s desktop operating system continually pops up warning messages, creating unwarranted fear of legitimate software. You won’t find Ableton Live, TextMate, and many other top-shelf apps in the App Store. These companies were marketing and distributing software long before the App Store. Apple’s walled garden has nothing to offer established software firms, other than extortion.
There will likely be a day when Apple shuts down the Mac’s ability to install software outside of the App Store. Why wait for this to happen? Microsoft probably won’t make the same move. For those who want freedom of choice and options, Windows is the best option.
My Windows Experience
I prefer macOS to Windows. Even though I switched to Windows, I still think macOS is a better operating system. It’s fast, sleek, and attractive. Craig Federighi and the macOS team have managed to keep the operating system stable through releases. Perhaps neglect is working to Apple’s favor, as they haven’t been able to ruin this operating system with superfluous features, which result in more defects.
Windows 10 is not a bad operating system. Microsoft borrowed a lot from Apple. If you’re moving from macOS to a Windows 10 PC, the difference isn’t staggering. I still find Windows to be a little rough around the edges. The 3.5″ floppy disk icons peppered throughout the OS are always worth a chuckle. The jagged system fonts and outdated UI make me wonder how many foosball tables they have in Remond.
Jokes aside, Windows is much faster and more stable than it used to be. I’ve been using Windows 10 for a few years now, but only for a few weeks as a daily driver. Working as a senior software engineer at a Fortune 5 company, I know Windows inside and out. I’m not afraid or intimidated by Windows. I just think it’s inferior to macOS, but it’s good enough. After all, running a slightly superior operating system on computers that break after a few months doesn’t make my life easier.
Switching to Windows was easy and painless. I subscribed to one month of Consumer Reports and researched the most reliable computers. Surprisingly, most Apple MacBooks are the best and most reliable machines, according to Consumer Reports. Maybe people like myself and Casey Neistat are unlucky? Perhaps Consumer Reports obtains select Macs from Apple? In either event, after two Macs completely broke down, I have no desire to tempt fate and buy yet another overpriced PoS from Apple.
According to Consumer Reports, the LG Gram series is the highest quality Windows laptop money can buy. I purchased one on sale and have been nothing but delighted and impressed by the experience. The machine is much better than my previous MacBook Pro, yet has the same price tag. For the money, a company like LG can produce a far superior laptop than Apple.
(Appledystopia has no affiliation with LG. I purchased this machine with my own money.)
LG Innovates with Consumers in Mind
My new LG Gram is one of the best computers I have ever owned. Although it feels solid and rugged, it’s by far the lightest laptop I have ever used. It feels comfortable on my lap, compared to the heavier MacBook Pro. It’s just as perceptively thin as any MacBook on the market.
The screen on this machine is absolutely gorgeous, and along with the newest Intel processor, completely outclasses similarly priced MacBooks. Unlike my MacBook Pro, the fan doesn’t go into overdrive when I open a few apps. It can handle anything I throw at it, including making complex music in Ableton Live 10. I can play games that aren’t even available on the Mac, as the developers can’t profit from an OS with so few users.
Unlike the MacBook, this device offers a touch screen. I thought touch screens on notebooks were a gimmick, until I started using Ableton Live 10 on my new Windows laptop. I can actually move faders and knobs with the touchscreen, which you can’t do on a Mac. It makes mixing a song with 30+ tracks much easier when I can just use my fingers on the screen, instead of a cumbersome trackpad and pointer. The alternative is to buy some external controller, which I don’t need, thanks to the touch screen. It’s as if Apple doesn’t cater to musicians anymore!
The keyboard on my LG Gram is a pleasure to use. Unlike the rickety, rubbery MacBook Pro, with its failure-prone butterfly keyboard mechanism, my LG Gram is a delight to type on. The keys are solid, responsive, and punchy. I can type quickly and confidently, suffering none of the problems that users experience with MacBook Pro keyboards.
There are so many other things to love about my LG Gram. The company really wants customers to get a lot of life out of the machine. LG offers industry-leading power management tools to help ensure that you’ll never need to replace a battery. Users see a clearer picture of battery health, with a colorful graph displaying its condition. One can even opt to charge the battery to 80%, extending battery lifespan, as charging to 100% stresses the battery.
LG’s tools also include a battery throttle control in the taskbar. Users can quickly switch between high-performance mode and energy-saving mode, giving them options. Apple doesn’t like to give users choices, such as valuing battery life over performance.
Overall, although I’m not a huge Windows fan, I absolutely love my LG Gram laptop. The screen is brighter and larger than my MacBook Pro’s. LG’s added utilities and ultra-fast fingerprint scanner leapfrog the Macintosh in so many ways. It’s clear to me that the Mac is for two types of people — Apple loyalists and iOS/iPadOS developers. The latter have no choice.
I Switched to Android Too
Apple’s poor handling of my defective Macs, along with their unsavory monopolistic practices, has me ditching my iPhone for a OnePlus 8 Pro. At first, I was apprehensive, as every Android phone I’ve used in the past has been deeply flawed. After a few days on my OnePlus 8 Pro, I realized that both Android and OnePlus create a much better experience than Apple.
I can go on about my switch to Android, and I do, in another article. My point is that there’s a whole world outside of Apple. In fact, most of the world doesn’t use Apple products. It’s a Windroid world, and I’ve rejoined society. It feels good to play Fortnite on my Android device, with its beautiful 120Hz display — something Apple won’t offer for at least another year.
Apple is a corporation that’s lost its way. It grew too big, too fast, and Tim Cook can’t manage the chaos. He’s not a techie, and, other than marketing inferior products as superior, he hasn’t done much to deliver new and exciting products.
Steve Jobs gave us the iMac, iPod, iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV. What has Tim Cook created? By all appearances, the marketing genius reinvented Apple as a marketing company more than a tech company. Apple’s great new device never materialized, and I don’t think it ever will.
If you’re looking for the future, look to China. Companies like OnePlus, focused solely on a few smartphone models, already make better devices than the iPhone. Given what Apple has become and what its competitors have achieved, it’s clear that the Cupertino tech giant is at the top of a slow, downward spiral. As their stock sputters and analysts tell investors not to buy shares, Apple may not be able to pull out of this slow nosedive.
Such trauma will only result in poorer-quality products. No thanks. I think I’ll take my chances with Windows and Android, where I have so many options. If OnePlus starts to make crummy phones, I can buy a Samsung or other brand of smartphone. I can take all of my apps with me. With Apple, you have no choices or options. You cannot take your apps or most content with you. You either love it or leave it, and I chose the latter. I’m so happy to leave the walled garden and experience the freedom of Android and Windows!