Curious Rat

No One Cares About Your Decision to Leave Apple Products and No One from Apple Will Read Your Poorly-Written Open Letter →

I was going to leave this one alone (or let the professionals handle it), but it was too juicy to pass up (and I'm a glutton for punishment).

Ed Conway for Business Insider: "DEAR APPLE: I'm Leaving You"

Dear Tim,

There’s no easy way to put this so I’ll just come right out with it. I’m leaving you. It’s been great (mostly) but it’s over.

Yes, Cats and Kittens, this bad boy was written as if Ed and Tim Cook were in some sort of bizarre, abusive relationship where Tim gave Ed beautiful products and Ed abused the English language.

I’ve been with you, with Apple I mean, for 13 years now – ever since 1999. Perhaps you’ve forgotten: I was a spotty teenager; I bought one of your cute little translucent iBooks.

Ah, yes, now he remembers you. You were one of the millions of "spotty teenagers" who threw their money at a company in exchange for products.

Like millions of others, I really believed the hype.

I never thought I would utter these words, but here goes: I’m leaving you. I have already traded in my iPhone for a Samsung.

Like a dagger through the heart. Say it ain't so, Ed.

1. iOS 6

Yes, I know I’m hardly the first to mention this – but that doesn’t make it any less valid as a complaint. It is truly, truly awful. I’m usually ready to forgive one or two niggles in a new iteration of operating system. After all, they’re usually outweighed by the improvements. In this case, I honestly can’t think of a single new feature that in any way enhances the phone. Every change you’ve made is negative.

VIP contacts, Do Not Disturb, Siri enhancements, Passbook, Facebook integration, shared Photo Streams - all shitty. Not a single positive feature. Got it. Well, at least Ed's being reasonable. What's the main thing he's pissy about?

The maps application is utterly horrendous;

Of course. To be fair, anecdotal evidence has shown Apple's new Maps app to be less accurate across the pond than it is here, but it will get better. The turn-by-turn directions and vector graphics certainly help what used to be a feature-deprived appication on previous iOS versions.

Given how badly you screwed up with the whole secret GPS-tracking of iPhone users…

This is misinformation, but I can't tell if it's because Ed's trying to make Apple out to look like the bad guy, or if it's because he has no idea what he's talking about.

All the new, exciting apps you’ve brought in are, I’m afraid to say, rubbish. Podcasts: dismal and buggy. Facebook integration: should have been there years ago. Passbook: erm – seriously? Siri’s improvements are lost on me because, like most users, the only time I’ve engaged with Siri is to see how many swear words he/she/it understands (answer: a surprising number).

Allow me to translate: "Podcasts: I haven't really used it since version 1.0. Facebook integration: I'm just grasping at straws. Passbook: I don't have a Walgreens rewards card. Siri's improvements are lost on me because I'm an immature child who writes open letters to CEOs of Fortune 500 companies with the expectation that people will take my opinions seriously, even though they're devoid of proof, logic, facts, or sense."

2. You’ve lost it

This is going to sound awful, but I can’t think of any big product you’ve re-imagined well since the iPad, and that was almost three years ago.

At least Ed acknowledges his comments sound awful. Like most of the tech press, he believes Apple needs to reinvent a category every year to stay on top of its game. Forget the fact that Apple consistently produces the best-built and best-reviewed devices on the market. If it ain't new and shiny, it ain't interesting.

iCloud? Not as good as dropbox, and actually more confusing. FaceTime? Slick, but still pales in comparison with Skype. iMessages? Mostly annoying, particularly when it sends messages twice. Siri? See the previous point. Safari? Not as good as Chrome or Firefox. Safari’s Reader function? Not as good as Instapaper. I could go on, but I think you get the idea.

I'll give him the iCloud thing - it is confusing and much less straightforward than Dropbox. But FaceTime? I can't remember the last time FaceTime dropped a call (or a podcast recording) on me, but Skype? It's why we use Google Hangouts.

And what did his previous point on Siri show other than that he's a callow manchild who behaves like a fifth grader spelling "BOOBS" on a calculator.

Safari bests Chrome in some ways and Chrome bests Safari in others, but Firefox is a bloated corpse compared to both of them.

As for Reader vs. Instapaper, I think he meant Reading List, which actually saves articles for reading later. Reader just pops up an ad-free version of the page you're reading now. Hooray for fact-checking!

Plus, my Mac simply doesn’t work that well any more. The contacts on my iPhone don’t seem to sync very well with my laptop. Aperture is extraordinarily slow and buggy, Pages and Numbers are a bit of a nonsense. It just feels like you don’t make the best software anymore. And it doesn’t fit together as seamlessly as in the past.

What kind of Mac does he have? How old is it? What OS is it running? What is "a bit of a nonsense"? And why are Pages and Numbers that? Why did no one proof this piece? Will Batman and Robin ever escape from the clutches of the Riddler?

3. You’re not cool anymore

But the Samsung phone Ed's using is?

These days, you’re all too ready to compromise. Do you want to know the beginning of the end of our relationship? It was when you decided to include an SD slot in your MacBooks. Why? I can’t imagine the Apple of old ever doing this; there is no inherent reason why you need one in your laptop, save to compromise.

I shit you not, these are Ed Conway's words. The "Apple of old" that shunned Blu-Ray, created Thunderbolt, eschewed DVD drives, and invented the Mag-Safe adapter is "compromising" because it put SD card slots in its laptops. And that's what prompted Ed Conway's creepy "breakup" with Tim Cook.

Or, in Ed's mind, "I don't use it so, flarglebarglehurgledygurgledy."

And in compromising, you’ve become too complex.

I smell burnt toast.

When iOS came out I found myself having to download the manual and wade through its 156 pages (156, FFS Tim!) to find out what you’d done with the settings I used to use. That’s the first time I’ve ever had to use an Apple instruction manual.

FFS! ROFLMAO! OMGLOLWUT! This is a grown man - a grown economics editor - speaking like a thirteen year-old girl. Now I get the whole Siri thing. SMH.

4. You’re screwing us

You might be surprised to learn that the final straw for me wasn’t the maps debacle.

Was it the Chinese labor? Was it the ongoing patent litigation? Was it Tim Cook's refusal to wear black turtlenecks?

No: the final straw was when you decided to replace the dock on the bottom of all your iPhones and iPads with the new “lightening dock”.

"Lightening" dock? It glows? Did that cost extra?

Ed's huffy because Apple gave up the old 30-pin dock connector it had been using for 10 years for one that was smaller, faster, and could be plugged in on either side.

The main reason you did this is the main reason you seem to be bringing your products out in ever shorter product cycles: planned obsolescence.

Products? Was there a new version of the iPad Mini released already? But perhaps he's right. Ten years is way too short of a time period before switching to something better. Uncool Apple should've held on for another 10 years, like all those manufacturers hoving VGA ports into their laptops.

It’s a really low-down thing to do – particularly since the lightening connector is patently not that much faster than the existing dock.

And Ed has the numbers to prove it! Somewhere…I think…oh, wait…

Finally, I realised that you’ve been working your way here for years: the fact that you give up supporting old Macs far quicker than before;…


…that you won’t let us download and delete our own music from your cloud.


You realise there isn’t much money long-term in being a pure manufacturer. You want to turn yourself into a quasi-service, where we constantly need to buy or subscribe to one of your products. I see the point – it’s economic genius. The problem is that it’s not inspiring in the slightest; and the products are no longer wowing us enough to detract from the venality of it.


5. I don’t need you any more

That’s right. I’ve realised – and it’s been a revelation – that I could get on perfectly fine without you.

Don't let the door hit you… But wait, there's more.

I’ll hang onto my iPad for the time being. I’ll certainly keep the Macbook Air – I’m not quite ready to return to Windows yet.

And there we go. An already bogus argument completely voided in the span of a dozen paragraphs.

A better title would've been, "DEAR APPLE: I wish I knew how to quit you."