Apple Ecosystem Trap

4 Min Read

Do you have an Iphone? I have an iPhone. Many people have them, but why? I have struggled for a long time to find the answer even though I use their products daily.
Apple is a master at making your current device feel obsolete. Especially the iPhone, which has a new model released every year. In Addition, The company is known to charge a ‘luxury price’ for their products, even though there are other companies that manufacture devices at a similar price, with much better internals.

Take Samsung for example. I know many iPhone users mock the idea of switching to ‘one of those Android things’; but honestly you get so much more for your money if you consider the high quality of Samsung’s screens, cameras, batteries and other internal components.

Why do we buy iPhones when there are alternatives that are better for the price?

The answer is simple: Apple has a very good build quality, a good reputation and a very user-friendlyecosystem.
There is no company like Apple that can produce products that work so well together. You can buy an iPhone and an iPad and sync all your photos and apps to each other via iCloud. You can buy a MacBook Pro and reply to text messages directly from your laptop. You can buy a few AirPods and switch seamlessly between your devices with very little effort. If you replace that MacBook with a laptop from a Window, you immediately lose a lot of compatibility.
Lately, am starting to feel stuck in the Apple Ecosystem trap. For years I have been proud to own an iPad, Macbook, iPhone, and accessories to not only support a company that I feel makes premium products with customers in mind but to also experience the unifying tie-in between all its devices. iMessage, iCloud, Handoff, Keychain, and so many other services by Apple that you can’t truly experience unless you are fully invested in the entire Apple Wcosystem.

Appleseems to get the user experience aspect of their devices just right. The American company knows exactly what users want in a smartphone in terms of user interface and security. But that doesn’t explain why they put even a 1080p screen in their best-selling phone.

Apple is one step ahead (usually)

There are areas where Apple is behind the competition, such as the introduction of a widescreen camera; make their screens from edge to edge and add a screen with a high refresh rate.
However, when it comes to security and physical design features, Apple is often ahead of the game. You just need to look at the AirPods, Touch ID and “Sign in with Apple” to know that the company knows what their customers want. Why else would all other manufacturers copy the idea of unlocking your phone and making purchases with your thumb? Why does every company have wireless headphones that can easily fit in a small charging case?

Two devices that work together perfectly.
Because Apple started the trend and Apple is very successful.

What is the future for Apple?

While the current formula has worked very, very well for Apple, I believe that the current approach to the way Apple operates is not at all the vision Steve Jobs had when he was in charge.
Steve Jobs focused on innovation, price, quality and above all the customer. Remember when Jobs announced the very first MacBook Air with an envelope in 2008? This was a quote he used, summarizing the change in Apple’s attitude in a nutshell:
The MacBook Air comes standard with an 80 GB hard disk; and there is an option of a 64 GB solid state drive if you wish. These are a bit pricey, but they’re fast!
You’d never catch Apple calling any of their products pricey these days, and this shows just how customer-focused Steve Jobs was. He wanted to sell products that customers would be happy with, while selling for a fair price.
I think Apple should work on this in the future. Of course we know that people are willing to pay for the products; but in order to compete with other emerging brands, Apple needs to give you more for your money or lower their prices for what they have.

How does Apple make sure you buy their products?

Smart marketing and “FOMO” – the fear of missing out. We live in a generation where Apple is the default name for a smartphone or the default name for a laptop. We live in a generation where things don’t last ten years, things last 4-6; and Apple are usually the first people to need a replacement.
Apple designs its products to be updated in five years so that you are more of a repeat customer; as you are probably in their ecosystem. My iPhone 6 (released in 2014) was running so slow that I upgraded out of sheer frustration. But I couldn’t go for a Samsung, OnePlus or Google Pixel because of the other Apple devices I bought. Long story short, Apple knows how to keep you.

Why don’t you choose anyone but Apple?

Obviously, this doesn’t apply to those of you who don’t use Apple devices, and you’re probably very happy with your fruit brand alternative, but those of you who use Apple products probably aren’t interested in switching to another brand – I certainly am not, despite the hardware Restrictions that we have.
As I mentioned above, the ecosystem does a lot for Apple. But there are other areas, such as the high quality associated with the brand; the user experience, the first-class product support (in terms of software) and often good customer service. This is why I don’t want to switch from Apple.
That’s right, I’m happy with using Apple products for now. But I still wish they would be ‘revolutionary’ with their products. The minor changes between the last three models of the iPhone weren’t big enough to be considered game changers. The laptops they produce seem to be less competitive than others, but I will still prefer their products purely for the user experience.
At the end of the day; if the product experience is good and your productivity is as high as normal, it doesn’t matter which brand you choose. Apple knows this, but they don’t want you to.
So though it is easy to make myself depressed over the aspect of feeling trapped. I am instead going to focus on what I can control within my technology life. And that is to restrain from impulse purchases of Apple products just because they are new or adds a small improvement to the ecosystem.

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GeeksModo Staff is a team of iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple Watch experts led by Moses Johnson. We're passionate about all things Apple!
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