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IPhone owners, thou shall be emancipated by Moses
Jul 19, 2015 04:08 PM 5076 Views
(Updated Jul 20, 2015 02:30 AM)

It is not uncommon to find one of those old Nokia 1100 phones still being in use. Why? Most people just want phones to make calls and send text messages. Many don't see the need to splurge on gadgets most of whose functions one doesn't need at all. But in a simpler device, is something unusable - no. The best part is that manufacturers of any electronic product continue to stock spares several years after a model goes out of production. They maintain a national(sometimes international) inventory and manage to order spare parts from another location if one service centre doesn't have one.

Why do we still find Windows XP being used in machines? Microsoft doesn't stop you from obtaining its software from anywhere you want and just install the damn thing. You can customise the software, games, anything you want the way you like.

Apple meanwhile comes up with this innovative idea of fleecing its users by controlling everything they do and make them dependent on the company for eternity. How

  1. For any application you wish to install, it can be done only through the iTunes Store. Nothing - just nothing inside the phone can be accessed by attaching it to a PC. For any update or for that matter even resetting your phone requires you to be connected to the internet. There is this joke circulating that if Apple made cars, it would ask you to be sign in with your Apple ID each time you wish to change the gear. It surmounts to a situation wherein even though you pay a ton of money to obtain their product, you have to take their permission to do anything with it. The worst part is that even if someone designs an application that is Linux based, it can't be installed in Apple devices unless that person pays to put it up on their god forsaken store.

  2. Apple doesn't train its stores with the capability of repairing its products. There is NO store in the world that can repair your existing Apple iPhone. All they can do is to replace it for the pettiest of problems, most often at a price. And if the model is no longer manufactured, one needs to pay the difference to get the upgrade. Now after paying so much, people would prefer to rather not discard the phone and just get the upgrade. This way customers are left with no choice but to remain enslaved by Apple to not lose their investments - a technique that gambling companies use.

  3. Apple doesn't provide spares to anyone. If you are out of warranty, the only option is to discard the phone or else approach some local dealer who would install Chinese made duplicates in the device. This is a way to ensure that the only option available to an old user is to opt for getting a discount with a new purchase of another iPhone.

Apple does not have telephonic technical support nor an escalation mechanism. All they can do when you raise a complaint is to tell you to go to a Store. The stores meanwhile are always ready to fleece customers. I have known people whose whole families use the most expensive models of iPhones. When probed, they said that a contact who franchises for Apple, distributes iPhones to all his friends like distributing chocolates. Apparently the franchisees send fake bills to Apple for giving out replacements to customers while at the same time billing customers WITHIN warranty for giving out replacements. Otherwise why would anyone throw around expensive devices like that? Does Apple allow its francisees to get free iPhones to distribute to their friends and family?

Suppose I have a very petty problem - lets say the case is scratched. Why do I need to be given a replacement phone and be charged for it? I wish to keep the same OS version and the settings and software as they are and just have the back cover replaced at whatever is the cost of that piece of plastic. Why can't Apple just give that option?

Their god forsaken updates - don't even ask about it. Almost nothing installs unless you upgrade your OS to their latest idiotic update. Almost every time their new update releases it destroys the whole phone. Add to it, with the lower RAM, storage capacity and other things, it slows down the phone a lot. But do you have a choice - no. You have to upgrade because their iTunes store only allows you to install new apps if you download their update. Does Windows tell you to install their recent Service Packs for any software update? You can install them by attaching an external storage device. Apple doesn't allow you to even expand the memory. Rather than giving an option to allow users to expand memory through a memory slot, they release another version with more storage space that costs a ton more than the version with lower memory.

So we had this nightmare iPhone 3GS. I think Apple owes everyone who bought this model a recall and dole out new phones to all of them. Almost a few months after it was bought, the home button started giving problems. And obviously the Stores only have replacements and no repairs. Also, they being franchisees don't wish to go through the paperwork of why a replacement was given. Well I wish to keep all the software and settings as they are and not have it replaced if I could. Why isn't such an option there? Each time, the stores simple meddled, twisted and gave temporary fixes to the home button and returned it back until the warranty lapsed. Given that their stores only work 10-7 on weekdays, it is a big hassle getting time off from work and visiting one. Someone then recommended that we use the'on screen assistant' option(I forgot the exact jargon) which puts a white dot at the top that sort of gives some of the features of the home button on the screen. So this worked for a while. I had an inexpensive Nokia Symbian phone onto which I could install a lot more apps than this phone anyway. So this piece of junk Apple phone just remained one in which we clicked some good pictures, used WhatsApp, made phone calls and sent text messages. Barring that nothing else was any longer usable. We were skeptical about deleting any of the existing apps and reinstalling them to speed up the device owing to the fact that the OS wasn't updated.

It got to a point where the phone could not be used at all. Even WhatsApp became corrupted and gave blank screens. So I got forced to uninstall them and as expected when I tried downloading the apps, the phone forced me to update iOS. After wasting 1 GB of data off my data plan, the update installed. It began giving problems of shutting off the phone randomly. I looked up solutions on blogs and was suggested I reset the phone. Well, well. The god forsaken thing wont even reset to factory defaults. It will reset to the new version provided you are connected to the internet. By now, I had wasted over 600 Rs of data in this ordeal. And to what cause - nothing. The phone continued to shut off at random times. I had to then recharge it often. One fine morning I found the phone bloated up and the back cover cracked. You must be kidding me! The battery has expanded and Apple as you know has designed their weapon of slavery in such a way that the battery cannot be removed without opening the case. Considering that the warranty expired and since everyone said that leaving it like that can eventually cause the screen to crack or make the phone explode, I decided to get the battery taken out before approaching their hopeless support. A phone dealer opened it up for me and returned the parts. I was constantly worried that the battery may explode at any moment.

I then tried to escalate this matter. However, like expected their helpdesk said they do not know anything'technical' and that I needed to go to an Apple Store to get it checked. I argued giving facts about how they are only interested in forcing customers to buy new models at discounts over the exchange and never repair phones. She still insisted I get it checked and that it was ok for the battery to bloat up after its life ends, which is one year.

So, Apple in a way tells you this - you buy their ultra expensive gadget and remain enslaved to their software and services. After the warranty expires, they take no responsibility towards the phone or any damage you may have to incur.

You know even though lithium ion batteries are warranted for one year only, they still last longer if one is lucky. I have used phones without replacing their batteries for as long as five years. So that is Apple saying - your expensive smartphone is something you should expect to last for one year only. As per international standards on safety hazard, if any equipment can cause physical or material damage to the owner, the company is obliged to repair or replace it without charge irrespective of the warranty. But apparently Apple chooses to not follow that. Companies like Dell and HP replace laptops and issue exchanges at no cost in case of overheating problems.

Since she(Apple support person from Ireland) forced me to go to a Store, I obliged at made one last attempt. As expected, they said that they can't do anything because I opened the case. I explained that if I hadn't done that my phone would have broken into pieces given how much the battery had bloated. As a matter of fact, when the phone dealer was unscrewing it, the motherboard actually popped out along with the screws and one of the screw holes even broke off. "You could have brought it here instead of going to a phone repair shop". Well, you people are not open at all times are you? "Sorry sir, we can't help in this case as you opened the phone".(Token: EQ24344). Wow. Even if I am ready to pay for a replacement battery, they don't have an option to help and Apple spare parts are not available anywhere.

Most of the earlier iPhones have had problems with their batteries and many users have reported over heating and even exploding. But Apple doesn't care.

Conclusively, the next time you wish to splurge 60, 000 Rs on an Apple iPhone whose specifications are no superior to a 6000 Rs smartphone of other companies, remember you are spending MONTHLY an amount which you would spend on other phones over 5 years. As in, a phone that is only meant to last for one year and not repaired after that would be one which you discard a year later. So effectively you spend over 5000 Rs on a phone, hoping it lasts even for a year. And yet, you have no option to download apps of your choice, you have no way of getting replacements for minor components; and after a year, the phone can as well explode, cause burn damage to your home or yourself and you have to bear with it. Why? Cos Apple customers are slaves of the company.

What's worse - Apple phones can only transfer data(minimal) to other iPhones. You can't connect an Apple device to a Windows or Android device. So you get forced to recommend your friends and family members to buy iPhones. Add to it, I have always seen that iPhones seem to drain a lot more 3G data with minimal app usage. So it is not just the 60k you splurge on an iPhone but the company invariably forces you to spend a lot more on internet and in marketing its products. Not only does it disallow you from using expandable memory cards to quickly transfer files, you cannot immediately transfer photos to a friends computer or an office machine through data cables if the machine does not have Quicktime in it.

What ARE these people? Dispatched from hell? And how is it that everyone(including me) can be stupid enough to buy their product in spite of all these flaws. Well at least I never knew before buying it that they force you into their OS ecosystem until I began using the phone. But I pity those who vouch for Apple products even after seeing that their phones are so overprotective and cannot integrate with any other device or gadget that they use.

But one thing that Apple can know is this that this was the last phone that me or anyone in my family or close friends circle have bought.

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