Future shock: Wireless is coming


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Imagine how hard it is for Apple to try to show us the future when we insist on shuffling around like Jacob Marley except tied up in headphone cords instead of chains.

“This is fine.”

Writing for Inc., Geoffrey James says “It's Official: Apple Is Just Milking Its Cash Cows.” (Tip o’ the antlers to Richard Bukanovsky.)

Because if there’s one thing we know about Apple it’s that it always does its product development out in the open.

Ever since Steve Jobs died in 2011…

[Clown horn] [Seltzer bottle spray]

Once again we see that the ones who knew Steve Jobs the best were the pundits who probably never met him. It certainly wasn’t the people who he hand-picked to run the company and with whom he worked every day for years.

…I've been hoping that the momentum he created would continue to propel Apple forward.

Instead, they went out of business.

Alas, I’ve now come to the conclusion that Apple has lost the innovative elan…

“I was in AP English, you know.”

…that once made it special.

If you click through, you’ll see that almost every sentence of this piece is its own paragraph. Is this a poem? Some kind of ode to… coming to the wrong conclusions?

Don't get me wrong.

Well, it doesn’t help when you start off so wrong.

I've sat through five long years of me-too product announcements with the only (arguably) new idea the questionable-useful Apple Watch.

Apple Pay? Nah. Siri? No, no. Touch ID? Psh. Raise to wake? Don’t even, girlfriend. Two cameras? I can’t even with this. AirPods with instant pairing? Don’t make me come over there. Unlocking your Mac with your Watch? So stoopid.

Take, for example, the absence of an audio jack in the iPhone 7.

Please! [rimshot]

That's not even a feature; it's a limitation.

Are the longer battery life, new TouchID sensor and improved water resistance gained by removing the audio jack also limitations? Is everything a limitation? Perhaps. Buddhism does teach us that anything that ties us to this physical world limits our spiritual potential.

And the Macalope wants that stuff bad. But desire is the cage that confines the soul. Very deep thinking here.

Well, it would be if that’s what he meant. But it’s not.

Unless I'm very wrong about this, Apple could have created a patch cord with a "Lightening in" [sic] jack so that you could charge and listen simultaneously.

You’re not wrong and, guess what, someone has already done that. Apple probably won’t do it, though, because their real goal is to get you to ditch the wires. Speaking as someone who’s gotten wires caught in his antlers more than once, that’s not a bad goal.

Wireless ear buds which (while we're on the subject) are destined to to fall out of your ears and get lost within three days of purchase.

The floppy disk will live forever and touch screen keyboards will never catch on because you can’t feel the keys.

Hey, maybe someone can make a cord you can attach to the AirPods so you can keep track of them like those strings parents used to put on the gloves of the dumb kids that ran up one sleeve and down the other.

There’s another side to this story. Mrs. Macalope, for example, regularly churns through wired headphones at a rate of a pair a quarter because she catches them on things or slams them in the car door. Her Bluetooth headphones, however, have no such problem.

Will some people lose their AirPods? Of course. And at $160 a pop, that’s not great (which is why the Macalope is going to be very careful with his). But that’s half the story. You can’t just tell half the story and be accurate.

For years, Apple has tried to position the Macintosh as a more secure and stable alternative to Windows, with limited success.

Even though it’s the only platform that’s been able to increase sales over that period.

An iOS device could a PC/Mac killer, if it supported multiple windows (small "w"), automatically coupled with a large screen (for desktop use), and supported a mouse.

An iOS device could kill the Mac if it ran macOS.

You have a definitional problem here.

I can't help but think that if Jobs had lived, Apple wouldn't be slouching its way toward mediocrity.

If you think Steve Jobs wouldn’t have killed the headphone jack to help usher in a new era of wireless audio then the Macalope doesn’t know what to tell you.

Yes, Phil Schiller’s line about “courage” was over-the-top ridiculous back-slapping. But progress isn’t always easy. It might be a little difficult for some people for a little while and maybe the iPhone 7 isn’t for everyone. But the future is wireless and when it gets here, all this caterwauling will seem like the wailing of actual cats, confused and angry about not understanding what’s going on.

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