Almost a month ago I tried to schedule an appointment with Apple to get a new battery installed in my aging iPhone 6 Plus. Thier automated phone system redirected to their Customer Service Department. The woman whom I spoke with informed me that they would have to special order my battery from China since they no longer manufacture batteries for my iPhone model anymore. A Customer Service representative told me it might take up to a month. It has now been a month. And still, I wait.

My iPhone is now a piece of crap. It is slow. I cannot load most apps. A lot of my apps freeze. Even the most basic Apple apps do not work. It is sad when Apple’s own Apple Maps apps crash your iPhone while Google Maps functions without issue.

Or Apple Music! I am a paying member of Apple Music. One day, my Apple Music app crashed. All of the music downloaded was removed. Thankfully it still exists in the iCloud, but now I am forced to stream my music. I cannot listen to it offline when there is no cell phone reception as if often the case in the subway. I was understandably frustrated. However, resolving to not cry over spilled milk, I tried to re-download my music. Unfortunately, the app keeps crashing when I try to download any music. As a result, because Apple can no longer get their stuff to work on my aging iPhone, I was forced to seek other apps

Spotify and Pandora

I have since tried Spotify Premium for a three-month promotion. I have since tried Pandora Premium for a similar three-month promotion. Both of these apps work better than Apple’s Music app. Both of these apps are better designed than Apple’s Music app. And both of these apps are not unnecessarily overly complicated like Apple’s Music app. I do not care that Apple has increased the size of the font on their music Apple. Their app is still a mess.

What is happening, Apple?

I am trying to give Apple the benefit of the doubt. Since many are claiming the slow down issue which a number of us are experiencing is battery related, I want to see if this is indeed the case. If Apple is only going to charge $30 to replace my battery, why not do it?

My iPhone is a little bent due to my clumsiness. However, has worked flawlessly for the majority of the time it has been in my possession. Otherwise, I might take a gamble and purchase iFixit’s battery replacement kit. I worry I would damage my phone worse. Also, should anything in my phone become unworkable after Apple replaces the battery, they might just go ahead and replace my phone? Or so I have heard from a friend of a friend. That would be nice.

Picture of the back of a Google Pixel

Photo by Michael Mroczek on Unsplash

The Android Dilemma

Apple claims they do not make items with built-in obsolesce. But if the only thing slowing down my aging iPhone is the battery, then being able to replace the battery, seems like a no-brainer to me. There are days when I would love to switch over to Android and try something different. However, I am so locked into the Apple ecosystem, to leave would be to say goodbye to some of my favorite apps. Two of my favorite apps:  Bear and Things—are iOS/MacOS only. The developers at Bear have stated they have no intentions of developing for Android or Windows.

Why are the best note taking apps and writing apps only available on MacOS? Maybe because more would-be writers prefer to be seen writing on a MacBook versus a Windows in coffee shops? Not sure.

Walled Garden Syndrome

If more apps were not built within walled-gardens, it would be easier for consumers to switch back and forth. But alas, we do not live in that world. We live in a world where Apple, Google, and Amazon want to lock you in their versions of walled gardens. Forcing you to use them exclusively. Making you a loyal and repeat customer, whether you come willingly or now. This is not the future we want.

I admit I came willingly to Apple’s ecosystem. I happily allowed myself to be locked in. I had only just left Android. At the time I was very much frustrated with the state of Android and its apps. Where most apps seem half-baked at the time due to Google’s very open Play Store. Of course, Google came down hard on Play Store, and removed a number of the poorly made apps or malware apps are imitating more popular apps. Google has since improved on Android significantly from what I have recently read and seen.

Around the time the iPhone 4S was released I jumped ship from Android. Telling myself I would never look back. But that turned out to be a lie. I still prefer Apple’s build quality. Only now I think Samsung’s phones are comparable. However, I am still not a fan of Samsung’s TouchWiz layer over Android. Or they are blatant insistent of making shitty Samsung app versions of nearly every available stock app. They even have a very shitty Samsung app store and Samsung Pay. Samsung will not stop doing this, of course. They see Apple, Google, and Amazon thriving ecosystems and inevitably said, “Why not us, too?”

But Jesus, Samsung! Wait until something is ready before you release it in the wild. Don’t program something up to a Beta (or sometimes in an Alpha state) and then release it to the masses. Get your house in order!

The New Battery is Coming

I am still waiting for a new battery.  I got an email today that my battery has arrived and I need to schedule a time at an Apple Store so my battery can be replaced. I have less than a week to do this apparently. And my Apple Store is all booked up, it seems. Sigh.

My phone is ready to be buried in the ground. My hope is I can make it see whatever Apple releases this upcoming September. I am hoping they release an iPhone with Touch ID built into their screen. I am not a fan of their Face ID. As I have heard many friends with iPhone X’s state their frustration with this method of authentication. But regardless, whatever Apple releases in 2018, I and going to get it because I have no choice. And that is exactly how Apple wants the world to burn.

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