IFlop? Bad iPad3 reviews a significant first

I haven’t said much about all things Apple on my blog thus far… and maybe I should have.  The “curat­ed” appli­ca­tion expe­ri­ence has many hid­den con­sumer pit­falls includ­ing loss of pri­va­cy, but loss of con­trol over our own com­put­er devices is pal­pa­bly the most impor­tant.  Many sci­ence fic­tion writ­ers have writ­ten vol­umes of the time when machines will con­trol us, but does that start with the “sin­gu­lar­i­ty” or sim­ply the pur­chase of tech­nol­o­gy that works against us quietly?

Apple has been lead­ing the charge with it’s curat­ed appli­ca­tion expe­ri­ence.  This start­ed with the iPhone’s “app store” and has since migrat­ed to the desk­top and tablet.  Cer­tain­ly with Steve Jobs at the helm, Apple could do no wrong, but since he left, there have been sev­er­al notable fal­ters — although some, like the treat­ment of work­ers in Chi­na were well han­dled, some, like the launch of the new iPad 3 may not be so eas­i­ly turned.

Accord­ing to the New York Times (who also quote Con­sumer Reports), the iPad3 can reach 116 degrees Fahren­heit, takes more than 6 hours to charge (and may not charge if you use it plugged in), breaks much eas­i­er, has weak WiFi and has no Siri.  The lat­ter is not a fea­ture that com­pet­ing pads bring to the table, but one that was expect­ed to be a rea­son for upgrading.

I’m not specif­i­cal­ly cheer­ing for an Apple fail­ure.  I once thought Apple was devel­op­ing into a good alter­na­tive to the Microsoft jug­ger­naut, but I no longer think Microsoft is as much of a threat as it was.  The real threat, it appears, are cor­po­ra­tions them­selves.  The inter­ests of the cor­po­ra­tions have nev­er aligned with the peo­ple they count as cus­tomers, but the diver­gence in inter­ests have nev­er been so vast as they are now: Tech­nol­o­gy Ampli­fies Every­thing.

In Apple’s case, the cura­tion of it’s com­put­er prod­ucts (the fact that you can­not run appli­ca­tions that are not “blessed” by Apple) is the thin edge of the con­trol­ling wedge aimed at con­sumers.  It may be a hap­py coin­ci­dence that Apple’s fal­ter­ing of late allows oth­er entrants the time to catch up and sur­pass Apple’s lat­est offering.

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