Friday, June 18, 2021

Chuq on the Apple Ecosystem

Chuq Von Rospach (tweet):

Apple giving a basic app away for free inhibits other developers from tackling that idea, and limits their ability to make enough money to warrant doing the hard investment in doing a real killer version of an app of that type. I do wish Apple would choose to either commit hard to an app and make it best of show, or kill the app and open the market to other companies. Instead, they do a middle policy of doing minimal work on an adequate app, making it harder for non-Apple apps to thrive, but not really serving the needs of the users very well, either.


Apple, I think, has too many things they’ve built and committed to market and not enough resources committed to properly maintain and push them forward.


A side aspect of this “benign neglect?” thing I see is that software quality at Apple, which for years was rock solid, has become more hit and miss.


[Podcasts is] example of a bad trend I see out of Apple, a refusal to embrace and compete in existing market areas, but instead trying to use their existing ecosystem to force people into exclusive relationships with Apple.


At Palm I was involved in the launch of the app store and the developer programs, and I really came to learn and love the challenges of that role. I also really came to believe -- and argue for -- strong support for the independent developers, not just for the big development houses, because I believe that’s where the new developers mature out of that go on to big things, and that’s where the true innovation on a platform happens.


Apple has never been that interested or great at relationships with developers, and I say that with great respect for many members of Apple’s DTS/Devrel teams, some of whom are friends and who have spent years fighting the good fight internally as well.

It’s gotten worse over the years, and while I will cut Apple some slack -- I don’t think people remotely understand the complexity and difficulty of doing things at the scale Apple has to do them -- but where Apple has over the years had opportunities to improve things for developers and make these platforms more appealing, they have consistently chosen to not take those opportunities.


App Review is far too often inconsistent, arbitrary and leaning into hostile and abusive.


But if Apple were to ask my opinion, which it won’t, I’d suggest starting with asking itself why it decided words like “arrogance” and “entitlement” were the defining points of their policies, and figure out how to replace “how little can we do to stop the bleeding” with “what should we do to fix this?”

Marco Arment:

Nails the problem Apple has with developer relations, from someone with very relevant experience.

Rich Siegel:

I loved this post. Friends of mine have heard me say that when Apple was hungry they were easier to work with. Some day they’ll be hungry again, but people have long memories.

Ken Kocienda:

Here’s an even better reason to generate goodwill: it’s the right thing to do. The world is a better place when everyone tries to help each other, and a worse place when everyone tries stick it to each other because they believe they can get away with it.


3 Comments RSS · Twitter

Patrick Carrington

Ditto. As a Member of the Apple Consultants Network for years, Apple kept moving us towards all things IBM and PC Interface / Networking to the point that I refused to take those training courses, and, therefore, I was OUT of the ACN. This was more an avocation for me, luckily, being a physician. But, since in 1998 I had one of the first medically-related websites made with CLARIS (AND medical offices) on the net using Bondi iMacs and Apple servers when Apple 'almost' went under made this esp. unpalatable as they become more adversarial, entitled, and just disharmonious. So all those courses, travel to those courses, motel rooms, etc. for naught. It became obvious that Apple cared very little for the ACN path and persons. Now we can add all of Apple's (Cook's) social agenda and political agenda and realize this is NOT your Father's Apple. I rarely get excited about new things from Apple like the old days. Unfortunately, IMHO.

Old Unix Geek

Yes, Arrogance and Entitlement. Almost as effective as Arrogance and Stupidity.

Apple not being hungry any more pretty much nails it on the head.

I want the real artists to return :p

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