Apple Archive

So Long Apple – Thanks For Nothing

After nearly three years, this will be the last post on AlliOSNews.  This weekend I experienced customer service so shockingly poor – so utterly unacceptable that I can no longer support Apple.  It is disappointing but having spent the last two days in a red mist of anger, it is time to kiss them off pretty much the same way they have kissed me off.

It started with me waking up and checking my email.  at 4:44 AM someone changed my password on my iCloud account.  Now I have enabled two-factor authentication on the account and, logic dictates, that even if someone managed to get the password, they would have to have my other information (recovery key, the physical devices in hand) to get into my account.  Clearly that was not the case.

With a bit of a panic I went to AppleID.Apple.Com to find out what was going on.  I tried to log in and failed and then was prompted for my recovery key.  I entered that assuming all was well.  No.  The Recovery Key was wrong.  Now I’m in a formal panic.  I call Apple and I’m informed that my account has been compromised.  How was this even possible with two-factor authentication?

I spend the next few hours trying to sort out what’s going on and speaking to Apple all the time.  The nutshell of it was that my account had been compromised, the Recovery Key had been changed, and the account was fully locked and encrypted.  There was no way to get any of my data back.

Now I know this is the case with data.  I get it.  I signed up for two-factor Authentication for a reason.  To prevent this very scenario.  But clearly there is something not right with how Apple has implemented it.  Somehow, some way, my account was compromised despite it being enabled.  I was okay with losing the data.  To be honest, aside from some contacts, most of what I have was in other services.  Something in the back of my head told me not to fully trust iCloud.

Here is the really bad part of the story.  Actually, it’s the shitty part of the story.

Because my Apple ID was tied to my iPhone, iPad Air and iPad Mini, they are, in Apple’s words, bricked.  Without being able to get into the account, these devices are tied to my Apple ID (which is now completely locked down and unavailable to anyone including, apparently, Apple) and cannot be tied to any other Apple ID.  The Apple support persons exact – and completely careless comment to me:  “Yeah, you are pretty much cooked”.

So let me get this straight Apple.  I’ve spent thousands of dollars with you.  I’ve done what you have suggested (or forced me to do) by tying my devices to my Apple ID.  I’ve then enabled two-factor authentication – which you say can’t be broken – and because of your issue, I am no longer able to use any of my devices?  Thanks for that.

The only way I’m told by Apple to get all of my devices back and register them with another Apple ID is to show proof of purchase.  Despite the fact that the Apple support people could see the devices I had and I repeatedly told them I had them in my possession, they said because of security they would have to have proof of purchase and engineering may decide to let me back into them in 6-8 weeks.

Awesome.  Pure Awesome.

The data is one thing but to render my devices useless is unacceptable.  This was not my fault Apple.  Even if it was, your poor security is pretty draconian when it comes to paying for a mistake.  Seriously – I forget my password and you lock me out of everything?  Including my iPad and Mac?  Wow.  Just. Wow.

The moral of the story is two fold peeps.  First, if you are going to use Apple products I would not enable two-factor authentication.  It’s clearly broken and clearly able to be compromised.  Run the risk of single-factor and come up with a really, really, really good password and hope for the best.

Second, if you can avoid Apple products, do it.  Clearly no matter how much you spend with them they do not care.  Their lack of a back door to prevent this kind of thing from happening is simply unacceptable.  Their poor security implementation has rendered my devices constantly nagging me for a password I can never hope to know or unable to activate.

As for me, I’m composing this on my re-formatted MacBook Pro running Windows 8.  Next to me is my Lumia 1320 Windows Phone.  My data is safe and secure in services other than iCloud.  And on the book case in front of me sits an effectively dead iPad Air, iPhone 5S and iPad Mini.

I’ll let you know if engineering decides to be nice and let me have my devices again.  Regardless of the outcome, I’m done with Apple.

So long.

Russia Asks For Apple Source Code Amid Spying Concerns

The Russian Communications Minister has asked for Apple source code to be handed over to the government in an effort to determine if spying is happening on their citizens with the use of Apple software and hardware.  The request, which has been requested of other companies like Microsoft (in 2003) and SAP and comes in the aftermath of the Edward Snowden revelations about the US government along with public statements made about strengthening intelligence gathering on Russia.  Interestingly, the statement from the Russian government comes on day that the US and Europe consider further sanctions against Russia over the Ukrainian crisis.

The Apple Enterprise Play Taking Shape With IBM Deal

One of the killer features of OS X Yosemite and iOS 8 that will be coming this fall is the ability to answer a call coming in on your iPhone on your Mac.  I highlighted this in an article I wrote back in June on how Apple may very well move the enterprise telephony goalposts with this feature.  This week Apple and IBM announced an agreement where the two giants will be working together to develop enterprise applications and solutions to get iPads and iPhones more into the enterprise.  Putting the tumultuous history these companies have had in the past aside, it is becoming ever more clear that Apple has their eyes set on the enterprise with this combination of features and this agreement.  We are now starting to see how the Apple enterprise play is starting to take shape.

Aperture & iPhoto for OS X Users – What You Need to Know

As many of you have read by now, Apple announced to 9to5Mac this weekend that they are ending development on Aperture, their professional photo management and editing app, as well as their more consumer oriented iPhoto.  The move comes in the wake of the announcements around OS X Yosemite at WWDC 2014 where the new Photo of OS X was announced.  So what does this mean for you if you use either of these apps today?

Apple to Acquire Beats Music & Beats Electronics

CUPERTINO, California—May 28, 2014—Apple® today announced it has agreed to acquire the critically acclaimed subscription streaming music service Beats Music, and Beats Electronics, which makes the popular Beats headphones, speakers and audio software. As part of the acquisition, Beats co-founders Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre will join Apple. Apple is acquiring the two companies for a total of $3 billion, consisting of a purchase price of approximately $2.6 billion and approximately $400 million that will vest over time.

Apple Releases Safari 7.0.3 for Mac

Apple has posted the latest version of Safari, their web browser for Mac.  Safari 7.0.3 fixes several issues and brings new levels of security to the browser.  Most of the features in the update focus on usability such as improving how the address and search bar behaves and improving the credit card autofill support for site that can access them.  Other improvements include support for generic top-level domains and improved sandboxing of the app on your Mac for improved security.

A big improvement in Safari 7.0.3 is the ability to disable push notifications from website in preferences of Safari.

Safari 7.0.3 Update

Safari 7.0.3 Update

Prior to this release, users had to go to System Preferences>Notifications to adjust this.  Now you can do it directly from within Safari itself, saving time and searching.

The update is available now on your Mac directly from the App Store via the Updates page.  It is free as always.

 

 

So Long 30 Pin Dock Connector – It’s Been Great

Today is a special day for Apple fans and the end of what has been a great and dare I say iconic way to connect your Apple devices to your Mac or PC.  With Apple announcing the end of sale of the iPad 2 today the last device that used the 30 Pin Dock Connector has been retired.  It has been a process that started two years ago and now every Apple iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch uses the new and improved Lightning Connector for your syncing and accessory access needs.

The 30 Pin Dock Connector was introduced with the original iPod back in 2003 and it was replaced by the Lightning Connector introduced by Apple in 2012.  Rarely does device connector stay in the market for 9 years but Apple managed to do it which speaks volumes to the thought and design that went into this connector in the first place.  It also became the standard for accessory makers with literally millions of accessories sold with the connector.

So tonight raise a glass – virtually on your iPhone of course – to the 30 Pin Dock Connector.  May it be remembered for years to come as the one connector that was very much a part of the success story that is Apple.

Apple Sales of PCs and Tablets Lead The World in Q4

Apple’s continued growth in the personal computer market continued in Q4 of last year according to research group Canalys.  Apple sales lead the market over Lenovo, Samsung, HP and Dell by accounting for 19.5% of all PC sales during Q4 2013.  If you really dive into this report there a lot of interesting facts about Apple and their competition to be found.

On the whole, PC sales grew by 17.9% year over year which is great but a little misleading.  Table sales, which are lumped into PC sales, were up 65.2% year over year and represented 48.3% of the total PC market.  Why is that important?  If you take out the tablet sales, the PC market actually shrank by 6.9% year over year.

From an Apple sales perspective, things look pretty rosy.  Overall the company shipped just over 30 million units in Q4 of which 84.3% were iPads.  The company increased their tablet marketshare from 27.3% to 34.1% in Q4.