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Recommendation for Apple’s WWDC

June 12th, 2016

Apple is about to hold their WWDC and announce a number of new hardware and software releases.

I have a few suggestions for great new features.

The first one is called, “Stop Shoving Crap at Me.”

Here’s how it works: if I don’t want to download an iOS upgrade because the current one works just fine for me and I’d rather not risk using an OS version which could cause lots of problems for me, then stop forcing my phone to repeatedly use up bandwidth and storage by downloading it, and cut out the crap with the two-step “reminder” every day. Would it kill you to add a “stop reminding me” button? I know you look better if you have better OS adoption rates, but you are pissing your customers off.

Leave the nagware to Microsoft. You’re making their Windows 10 reminders look good.

And how about this: when I want to do a search for a song on my Music app, stop making me take an extra step if I want to search my own collection of music, instead of searching your store. Yes, I see what you did there. Very clever. Now cut that shit out. If I want to go to the store to search for something or buy something, I know where to find it. Stop making me want to curse Apple every time I want to find a song in my collection and I forgot to specify that after tapping on “Search.”

Here’s my other great idea: make it possible to find apps.

This is actually a tangent of the “stop shoving crap at me” idea. Currently, if I want to find apps for my TV OS or Apple Watch OS, aside from the idiocy of only being able to only search for TV apps on the clumsy TV OS interface, or only search for watch apps on my iPhone (what suddenly happened to interconnectivity?), I am presented with only a few dozen options unless I specifically know what to search for.

For example, if I want to see new apps for my watch, I have to go on my iPhone (why not my Mac?) and select a category… and then see no more than 20 or 30 apps. Total. Obviously there are more, but I can only see them if I search for them.

Which means that unless (1) the app is one that Apple has chosen to grace with their seal of approval by placing it in the category listing, or (2) I can magically guess at the app’s search terms, then I will never find out about it. Same goes for the Apple TV, where the interface is at least twice as hard to use. And even then, I have no way of sorting these.

Apple has put huge effort into making different apps work together, and yet they can’t manage to have app searching controlled by a Mac OS device?

And as for presentation, is a desktop app which can present data sorted by price, popularity, reviews, and other useful information somehow beyond their capabilities?

I know Apple likes to sell you a car in any color so long as it’s black, but getting people hooked up with apps is their bread and butter. Having endless choices of apps was the big selling feature, it’s what people loved.

Instead, we now seem to only see what Apple wants us to see. That might be good for shaking down developers so they pay a premium for window space, but it royally pisses off users and makes if far more difficult for them to enjoy the grand diversity that has been Apple’s major advantage in the off-desktop world.

Oh, one more request: Allow me to set how much of my computer’s SSD space can be taken up by the Photos app. Seriously, I tried to clear what precious little space I have, and then Photos started stealing gigabytes from me by downloading photos I have no desire to see. Let me decide that. Right now, it’s all or nothing, and Apple gets to decide how much free space I have.

Oh yeah, not to mention that Apple’s vaguely worded dialogs make me fear that I am about to delete my entire library of data if I turn a feature off.

No. I am supposedly paying Apple to give me cloud storage so I can be confident that my data is being stored off my computer. Instead, I get this crap.

Look, I am used to Apple being greedy and overcharging. I am used to Apple deciding how things look and shutting me out of control. But Apple could do that because the overall experience was so good. That is now eroding. Whether it’s because of Steve Jobs’ departure from this realm or otherwise, I don’t know. I just know that it’s happening.

It used to be that I would get pissed off only once in a while, like when Apple released a new mouse, or decided to erase app features in a new version release.

Now, I’m starting to get pissed of all the time. I am a die-hard Apple fan who never imagined that I might like the alternative more. Apple is succeeding in changing that.

Seriously, Apple, get your shit together.

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  1. Rob
    June 18th, 2016 at 01:14 | #1

    Totally agree with this and I could add a bunch more to the list. Like my email address, which starts (skyreiter@…) with a play on my surname that the OS is constantly trying to change to skywriter. If I correct that and insist on the proper spelling, why do I have to repeatedly waste time with the same correction whenever I type it? Can’t the OS learn from its mistakes? How about letting me select the suggested spelling if I want it and just continue typing if I don’t?

    Every time I get an app upgrade notice on my iPhone or iPad, clicking on the app Zico doesn’t take me to the upgrade tab, bu to the store stab. No, Apple, I don’t want to BUY another app, I just want to upgrade one YOU sent a notice about.

    Etc. Etc. Sheesh.

  2. Luis
    June 18th, 2016 at 01:24 | #2

    Actually, I just turned off autocorrection for spelling (System Preferences > Keyboard > Text > Correct Spelling automatically), it was just way too annoying. I depend instead on the red underlining to show up my errors.

  3. Troy
    June 19th, 2016 at 03:47 | #3

    my last name is 5X as common as an obscure variety of plum, but f me if OS X wasn’t changing my email address to this plum on forms, — I actually didn’t get a car rental confirmation email since it went to the plum instead.

    the sad thing is Apple is super-investing in API dev while Microsoft is kinda not doing anything, so as a hobby dev I’ve got to stick with Apple.

    not a big fan of Swift but the 3.0 is a good step towards usability. C# is still 5+ years ahead, mostly, but you’re dependent on Xamarin having its act together.

  4. Rob
    June 21st, 2016 at 09:45 | #4

    Most the time I’m ok with Auto Correct, but this email bug is truly a nuisance. I’ve turned it off on my desktop, but keep it on for iOS devices cuz’ I’m fat fingered and clumsy on the reduced keyboards.

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