Apple At Its Worst

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Apple may be losing ground to Android in certain markets. Apple’s iPhone 5S may be “predictable” (as if that makes it a poor product). iOS 7′s icons may still not meet the expectations of the most critical of the tech elite and the trendsetters.

But none of that is Apple at its worst.

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On September 4th, the OmniGroup — arguably one of the most talented developer houses that call the Mac and other Apple platforms “home” — announced that it wouldn’t actually be able to offer an update to OmniKeyMaster at a discounted price to users who had bought the product previously on the Mac App Store. This isn’t surprising: Apple has no mechanism in place to allow for this. However, the OmniGroup was offering this discounted pricing outside of the App Store.

On their own website.

Outside of any real method that Apple controls.

And yet, it seems that Apple strong-armed the OmniGroup in to removing this option. You can read all about that in their official blog post on the subject, but this situation highlights what is easily the worst part of Apple.

Apple VS Developers and Consumers — Everyone Loses

They’re stubborn. The OmniGroup ingeniously found a way around Apple’s draconian App Store policies. They did this in the interest of the user. By strong-arming the OmniGroup in to putting an end to this policy, Apple did nothing but harm their own customers. The amount of money Apple stands to gain with this policy no longer being in effect is tiny — literally pennies in the bucket.

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So, for very little reason, Apple has done the following: first, they harmed their high-end users; secondly, they likely offended a very prestigious developer house — if I was the leader of the OmniGroup, my products would no longer be available on the Mac App Store; and lastly, Apple’s decision to stop the OmniGroup from doing this releases a chilling effect on the entire Mac development community.

This occurrence is relatively small, but is just another in a fairly long line of annoying choices in regards to the Mac App Store. If Apple wishes their first-party store to continue to be the primary source of applications on the Mac, they need to be more accommodating to developers and customers alike.

Luckily, I hear there’s an event coming soon. Maybe there will be some announcements in regard to this issue.

Post a response / What do you think?