'What was Google going to do, force Apple to change its mind?'
Plus: 'It was extremely tight. The sleeve started to slide off, but I was able to get it out'
QuotW This was the week when complaints about Apple's latest Jesus-mobe continued - but that didn't stop upwards of five million people forking out for it or queues forming in Blighty and elsewhere on launch day.
The 'maps app is crap' saga rumbled on as folks appealed to Google to save them from the random inaccuracy of Apple's attempts at geo-location. The search engine's chairman Eric Schmidt pointed out that Apple would have been better off sticking with his team:
We think it would have been better if they had kept ours. But what do I know? What were we going to do, force them not to change their mind? It’s their call.
Apple scrambled to improve the orientation-challenged app, including, say, hiring even more developers for maps, possibly from Google. A contractor said:
Many of my coworkers at Google Maps eventually left when their contracts ended or on their own accord. One guy looked around for other GIS work and ended up at Apple when a recruiter contacted him.
But profoundly lost fanbois aren't the iPhone 5's only problem: the new USB charger is giving people a bit of tech-rage as well. Apparently the business end of the cable sticks a bit too firmly into USB sockets and that wee white plastic bit isn't too sturdy either. A customer posted on Apple's support pages:
I went to unplug the USB cable from the wall wart and it was extremely tight. The white sleeve over the connection started to slide off, but I was able to get it out.
While another said:
So I tried to unplug my brand new Lightning connector from the white power block and the white plastic surrounding the USB end slides right of revealing the medal connectors.
Complaints about the shiny new device's easily scratched aluminium body fell on deaf ears at the company, as VP Phil Schiller rather unhelpfully told a heartsore fanboi:
Any aluminum product may scratch or chip with use, exposing its natural silver color. That is normal.
None of these things have stopped the iPhone 5 from being a runaway success however, in terms of sales, as the fruity firm offloaded five million of the bad boys in three days and now they're out of stock.
Over in penguin-world, Ubuntu users are outraged at the idea that shopping suggestions from Amazon will be plonked into desktop search results. Linux loyalists were up in arms that the adware was an invasion of privacy, and the distro's maker Canonical has since put in a kill switch to turn off the product links.
One Ubuntu user said:
I for one always used to go around and promote Ubuntu as a great OS for everyone, with this rather shady move you'll take very good arguments away from me and I will have to look elsewhere for a distribution where the user is king and not the advertising partners of Canonical.
And another said:
You're going to send all of my application and file searches to Amazon? How can this not be a flagrant violation of my privacy? As much as I like Ubuntu, this feature is going to make me switch back to Debian and donate $10 a year to them.
But Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth was quick to defend the move:
We are not telling Amazon what you are searching for. Your anonymity is preserved because we handle the query on your behalf. Don’t trust us? Erm, we have root. You do trust us with your data already. You trust us not to screw up on your machine with every update.
And speaking of Linux, a US congressman was outraged when a miscreant smashed his office windows and GNU/Linux was installed on the computer, branding the prank an assault on democracy itself:
This is an attack against a federal campaign office, which is an attack on our democracy as a whole. It's an attack against what we stand for, for free elections.
However it's now believed a teenage boy broke the windows with rocks, and one of the politician's team bungled the Linux install. ®