Has Apple gone too far?

Has Apple gone too far?

Apparently, Apple not only claims the right to censor what’s available for download onto your iOS devices, but they also reserve the ability to pull it totally off of your device if it slips past their reviewers in the first place. This means no more Quickpick in the Appstore, on iCloud, or on your iPhone. I’ll let that sink in for a minute…

A reader informed us last night about this having happened to 3 different “launcher” apps, but as of yet, Quickpick is the only one we’ve identified.

If you’re wondering why on earth they’d do this… You, my friend, are in good company. According to HalfPeeledApple, the app uses URL scheming, a hole in iOS 5. But don’t worry… They’ve closed it up in 5.1 betas.

Really, though, did they have to pull it and invade people’s personal devices? Couldn’t they have just fixed their error in the next version and let it speak for itself when they pushed the update?
And WHY is Apple constantly punishing users for their mistakes?

I think I speak for all hackers/modders/people who want a say in how they use their technology, when I say that Apple’s inconsistency and controlling attitude, their heinus methods of fixing their own mistakes, and their controlling attitude are only serving to turn people off. Pretty soon the iPhone’s entire demographic will be boiled down to people who don’t really want a smartphone, but want something with a touchscreen on which they can play Angry Birds.

I apologize in advance to those of you who’ve elevated Steve Jobs to sainthood, and will stand in line for every one of Apple’s “innovations,” but I really have some concerns about the entire fanboy attitude that allows otherwise intelligent people to take this lying down, and thank Apple for it. One user even tweeted:

Sweet. Apple pulled QuickPick. That was the right thing to do. Unclear rules can be frusterating but inconsistant eforcement is maddening.

Seriously? Maybe the “sweet” was sarcastic, but he goes on to praise the reviewers, who were too stupid to filter the app when it first crossed their digital desks, and for being consistent (consistently dumb, maybe). I’m all for getting what you pay for, and knowing what you’re buying ahead of time, and I don’t think ANYONE nowadays can claim ignorance on Apple’s controlling strong arm of censorship. But really, taking it to the level of actually uninstalling the software in question from the person’s device? I don’t think anyone can truly convince me they believe that is okay.

I’ll give Apple one thing: their closed system provides stability. But at what cost? What’s next? Are they going to start searching wireless networks for mac addresses of jailbroken devices and unjailbreak them, deactivate them because you misused them, or permanently brick them for you? Because if you wanted to use an iPhone, you would’ve used it the way they designed and programmed it to be used? So if there are any Apple fanboys reading this, please leave a comment explaining what it would take before you break it off with Apple and came to the light side where you can use WHATEVER launcher you want, and whatever app your mind can dream up, without their permission, without voiding your warranty, and without selling your soul to Apple.

What do you think as users? Is Apple removing launchers that are better than stock iOS, like Amazon did with ebook apps and the Kindle Fire? Share with us in the comments!

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About author

Tony McAfee
Tony McAfee 69 posts

A lover of all things technological since he was young, Tony McAfee is now the Director of Customer Service for Swappa.com and loves to stay up to date with the latest technology. Usually teetering between leading and bleeding-edge.

  • http://twitter.com/ChrisHRocks Chris Hutchinson

    I think I speak for all hackers/modders/people who want a say in how they use their technology, when I say that Apple’s inconsistency and controlling attitude, their heinus methods of fixing their own mistakes, and their controlling attitude are only serving to turn people off. Pretty soon the iPhone’s entire demographic will be boiled down to people who don’t really want a smartphone, but want something with a touchscreen on which they can play Angry Birds.”             love it!!

  • Anthonya1g

    Well done, sir!

  • http://twitter.com/iBolski Ivan Samuelson

    Just one of the many reasons I chose to use Android. I’d rather there be choices, and that’s why I chose Droid over iPhone – I didn’t like the controlling nature of Apple.

    It’s a shame, really. When the Apple ][ was the big thing back in the 70’s and 80’s, they were all about letting you open it up, expand it, etc. Heck, they even gave you access to the monitor to punch in hex code for machine-code programming, or if you had the integer module, you could also have access to the mini-assembler to code in 6502 assembler operations.

    But then, the Mac came. Closed off, only Apple software would work AND they didn’t provide any programming tools nor could you expand it. It was a dumbed-down machine that turned off a lot of programmers like myself and we moved onto PCs instead.

    But even then, Apple back then was still pretty controlling. Only they could make the computer and hardware had be approved, but still, it was more open than what they are today.

    Nope, I’ll stick with Android. But, that’s my choice and if someone else wants to choose iPhone, that’s fine. If the person doesn’t care about customizing their phone, then iPhone is the way to go. At least it’s consistent in what it has and does.

    But, if you’re like me, and you want to have more control and say over what is on your phone and how it looks and operates, then Android is the way to go.

    It’s all about choices and I hope that we continue to have choices. But Apple seems hell-bent on taking those choices away, especially with all their patent litigations they are filling.

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  • Anonymous

    @Ivan: its Android.
    Ans the day they started unjailbreaking jailbroken devices will be thw day i will literally pee my pants laughing.

  • Jezsims

    I see your point as I have iPhone and android tablet, but I have quickpick and it’s still installed on my phone and works just as it always has.

  • Kyfreethinker

    I like apples. I eat one every day. Oh wait… this has something to do with Androids? zzzzzzz

  • Kyfreethinker

    I like apples. I eat one every day. Oh wait… this has something to do with Androids? zzzzzzz

  • someguy

    You mean like Google did in March when it deleted malware infected apps from people’s phones?

    • Anthony M. McAfee

      You’re right, someguy, I’m surprised people weren’t more upset that Google cleaned viruses off their phones.

      Don’t be silly and pretend that Apple wanting to control exactly how the launcher operates on your iPhone is even in the same ballpark as Google proactivity in virus control. Not only was the infection dangerous to the users who downloaded the apps but could potentially have spread to anyone with whom those people shared information via their infected device.
      The malware infected apps Google wiped had the potential to steal your credit card numbers or any information your phone sent out wirelessly. Use a banking app? consider your account compromised. What Google did, most would call proactivity. They were protecting themselves and their users.

  • Ickyfehmleh

    What does this have to do with Android?  Let the iOS-running folk worry about what Apple’s doing; this in no way effects Android and is pretty trollish.

    • http://twitter.com/jeux999 Daner Doodle

      On the contrary…I’ve been wondering for a while now when the Android Army is going to stand up for their OS of choice. Regardless of your love for the OEM of your phone or tablet, the way Apple is using litigation to enforce market competition is pretty disgusting. Also, regardless of your sway to more regulation or a more open market approach, gaining accountability & transparency from a corporation who, at one point, had more money than our own government isn’t a horrible thing.

  • http://twitter.com/tpaulding Travis Paulding

    If it continues to interact with their system(s) like iCloud, then I think they have the right to stop it from doing that. As for how it plays out on the device once it is owned, I don’t think they should be able to have any power. Void a warranty, sure. If I buy a car I can do any mods I want but the manufacturer doesn’t have to honor anything.

  • Antarex

    It’s hard to compare, i’m not a fan of Apple, but as a long date user of android phones, i’m not sure wich solution is worse…

    Sure, Android is really less invasive, but remember the virus sprend trough the market… Virus using a bug into android fixed long time ago by google, but not installed on most phones because a lot of fabricant does not update their phone software…

    Example : my Samsung Galaxytab 2 10.1V (note the V for Vodafone, it’s the first version of this tablet) is still today with Android 3.0, full of bugs… No update available from vodafone nor samsung

    Yes, Android is open, but it’s sometime worse then clear rude rules… I do not like rules of apple, but i do not like a situation with no clear rules and many devices leaved behind…

    • Guest

      I also have the 10.1v and the lack of updates has ruined my experience, as well as the screen lifting above the case. 

  • Rod

    Who cares!!!!! Thats what apple fanboys and girls get for buying a piece of sh&* device.

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  • wick

    Remember Apple’s 1984 commercial? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhsWzJo2sN4) The zombies marching behind their great leader till someone smashes the screen. Isn’t this exactly what happend to Apple itself, now controlling the masses in 2013?