Breaktime is definitely over. An open letter about #Apple to Leo Laporte, Alex Lindsay and Andy Inakhto

I listened to “This Week in Tech” on Sunday and Om Malik arced up against constant negativity and outdated thinking about Apple by Leo Laporte. Om is right. I have been feeling the same way for most of this year about Leo and his panelists Alex and Andy. I am leaving Rene Ritchie out of this critique as he is a forward thinking and modern technologist who, in my opinion, is the only in touch regular Apple commentator on the TWIT network.

All the three mentioned do each week is bang on about dongles, ports, SD cards, headphone jacks, noisy keyboards, specs and so forth, of interest to the one percent. I am in 99 percent. They’re missing the big Apple issues of interest to the 99 percent.

Don’t get me wrong, I love geeking-out but I like intelligent and in touch discussion and not the ramblings of a few old bar flies reminiscing about SCSI ports, AppleTalk and “RAM Doubler”. I get my up to the minute geek-out fix from the Macgeekgab. Dave and John are the best in the business.

I am a technologist, audiophile and former broadcast journalist who has lived and worked all over the world, including three years in SF. I am your classic Apple user. I also have teenagers who are “Appled-up” and I critically observe their use and content providers to provide insights into needs and behaviours. I have high fluency in Apple and tech.

As for me, I just want a thin and light machine with a retina screen that’s accesses wi-fi or hotspots my iPhone for DropBox and iCloud and that’s about it. I have used Bluetooth earphones, happily, for years. I don’t want or need dongles, USB ports, thumb drives, wired headphones or 32 gigs of RAM to send email and shop online.

I am not fussed by the loss of Magsafe as I don’t need to plug my MacBook in during the day as I get 8 hours battery life. Magsafe was great when we had to be plugged in constantly. Those days are long gone. It is a habit to plug in and not a need for most these days.

Laporte, Lindsay and Inakhto live in a world of:
Compact flash and SD cards
2 hour battery life
Keyboards that feel like Remington typewriters
Ethernet ports
Wires
Getting a world changing products launched every two years

We live in a wireless world and day long battery life, gentlemen. You don’t need wires, dongles or portable storage. The game is not shiney new equipment, although we all love that. The game is services and platforms.

So what would I rather Apple experts talk about? What are these big issues that the gang of three are missing?

CarPlay – this is the most least discussed big item. It is causing a revolution in the motor vehicle industry and providing massive benefits for users. I have it on my Kenwood DDX9016DAB and it is one of my favourite Apple services. Where’s the MBW discussion on this?

iCloud – do I need to keep DropBox or is iCloud safe and reliable enough to store everything? But there’s no selective syncing! How does this work? Is iWork a feasible alternative to Google Docs? It is a big discussion. Where’s the MBW discussion on this?

HomeKit – Apple has made it too secure – threatening adoption meaning people like me have to go with Alexa/Wemo or Google Home. Where’s the MBW discussion on this?

Apple Support – Apple is moving its phone support from places like the USA and Australia to the Philippines and India, threatening their reputation of providing high quality support (the nice and well meaning staff in these places are not Apple Geniuses – they’re just people who talk you through procedures written by Geniuses). Talking to a local tech person on the phone was a premium service that made the cost of Apple worth it. Where’s the MBW discussion on this?

App ecosystem – incredible new apps come online every week. There’s incredible stuff happening out there. Looking at Apples to ten lists, I think few of any were discussed on MBW. Where’s the MBW discussion on these?

US-centric: I know the majority of listeners are in the USA but there are another 209 countries out there. The level of discussion of ApplePay and Chip&PIN has been incredibly naive and at times embarrassing. The rest of the world is way in front of the USA on ApplePay and Chip&PIN for purchases and transit. Where’s the MBW discussion on this? And guess what, there’s more to life than AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile.

So it is time for me to say “breaktime is over” permanently. Thanks for the laughs but I can’t spend six hours a week (TWIT, MBW and TWIG) in Leo’s time warp. My roster is iMore show, Macgeekgab and Daily Tech News Show with Tom Merrit (and I support the latter two financially as well).

Break time is over. I have other shows to listen to.

Andrew Woodward
Bellingen, Australia

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