alex in a nutshell

September 18, 2009

Apple and treatment of iPhone OS beta testers

Filed under: — Alex Salamakha @ 8:50 PM

I was boarding a flight to New Zealand few weeks ago and was about text my wife when my iPhone switched to its emergency screen. I quickly connected my laptop straight after take off only to see  iTunes error message about my OS version is too old.  That’s Apple’s way of telling a beta tester that he needs to upgrade his beta to a new one, which was released on the same day. No warnings, no nagging, just shut down the bloody thing. There goes my in-flight entertainment. FAIL!

Accident? Well, it’s a beta after all, however, you can’t downgrade back to a stable version even if you are prepared to wipe the entire phone off. FAIL! Well, technically you can downgrade but jailbraking it first, but it’s another story.

Got to hotel, spent 2 hours downloading new beta over both ridiculously slow and expensive Internet connection.

Yesterday it happened again. Right in the middle of a busy day iPhone OS 3.1 beta 4 decided to switch itself off. That’s how I found out about final release of 3.1. FAIL!

Companies should treat its beta testers with respect.  In contrast, Microsoft released Windows 7 RC due to expire early next year, few months after the planned release. Not only that, users get plenty of warnings on when their beta will expire, enough to plan ahead for an upgrade.

I fail to see any logic behind Apple’s decision to treat its customers like shit,  blocking any ability to use the phone except for emergency calls until the upgrade. If you really want me to upgrade, tell me in a form of a message. I may need phone now, but in few hours I’ll do it. Nah, why bother? FAIL!!! FAIL!!! FAIL!!!

I will never try Apple beta software again. This experience wasn’t good’ enough. And HTC Hero on Android platform looks exceptionally good.

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