Is Apple Holding Us Hostage?

groove-agent

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 13, 2006
1,106
838
Ok so a tongue-in-cheek post here...

After all these years, buying several Macs, iPhones, iPads, Mac-only software and the Apple watch, do you ever feel you have no choice but to keep buying Apple?

I love my 2012 cMBP but it's starting to die. Looking at the current offerings of laptops I'm rather disappointed: no ports, glossy screen, only 16GB of RAM, impractical/ gimmicky touch bar - but my main gripe is the value for the price.

On top of an already expensive core system, you then get gouged for SSD and RAM upgrades. Add all the USB C adapters or docking station plus AppleCare (which you have to purchase sooner than later), you're looking at the price of an (albeit used) car! Ok, yes I have the cash to spend, but I just can't pull the trigger. It just doesn't make sense to spend that much money on a laptop unless it's going buy me Starbucks, wash my car, and clean my cat's litter box.

Despite this we still buy them. Why? Because we're invested in the Apple ecosystem. They have us by the short and curlys and know that we have no choice but to pay the price, or start all over again in a rough transition back to Windows. I love MacOS, but am not a fan of their current hardware. The MacBooks are a series of very expensive compromises. If only other computer manufacturers could license MacOS. It's almost like a monopoly, but not. I can see why Hackintoshing is becoming so popular yet reserved for the tech elite.

I just came back from Best Buy and couldn't find anything to spend my money on. It was depressing. I was even contemplating the Microsoft Surface because a laptop and tablet for the price of a MBP seemed like good value IMO. Fifteen years ago I would have laughed at the idea of buying a Microsoft-made computer. What is the world coming to? ;)

Of course I'm exaggerating, but does anyone else feel similar?
 
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leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
10,459
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I buy Apple because its the best and the cheapest tool that meets all my computing needs in a way that make me satisfied. If you feel that you invested too much into the ecosystem to get out, well, that sounds like bad planning on your side :)

Other computers at similar price points also come with compromises. For instance, MS Surface is priced as a premium laptop, but is fairly oversized for its hardware and only comes with 15W CPUs. At least with the MBP the compromise has been the same for the last 15 years — make the most portable computer using the fastest available CPUs and mid-range GPUs.
 
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Queen6

macrumors G3
No, as I purchase what works best for my needs and don't allow myself to become "locked in" by any brand. Last year moved from high tier Retina MacBook Pro to a Microsoft Surface Book for my 13" solution, just in the process of swapping out Retina MacBook for Huawei MateBook X, 15" remains Apple for the time being. For me the cost is not the concern, rather more the revenue generated and features systems can offer.

Q-6
 

Samuelsan2001

macrumors 604
Oct 24, 2013
7,694
2,118
Not at all I went into the apple ecosystem knowing what I was doing and it has proved brilliant for me which is why I stay, if and when they don't meet my needs I'll move to something else.
 

daflake

macrumors 6502a
Apr 8, 2008
919
4,323
In the eco system for movies and music, but my computing ranges within Windows, Linux and Mac.
 

Matt Leaf

macrumors 6502
Feb 5, 2012
296
194
I do feel locked in, but its because of the quality. Particularly the software. It's weird to say, but in the field I work in, I really trust in all the little plugins and drivers and extensions and things on Mac. There is a lot of great software for the Mac that isn't on Windows, some of it I rely on. But comparatively, other machines are basically in the same price range. The Surface Pro is the same price as the Macbook Pro. So I have no incentive to buy a Windows laptop as they just arent as cheap as they used to be.
 
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Sterkenburg

macrumors 6502
Oct 27, 2016
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Not really. I have worked with pretty much every OS available and I'm relatively platform agnostic, the reason why I buy Macs is simply because they work really well for me and are a pleasure to use, that's all there is to it. More high-performance and/or cheaper solutions exist on the market, but giving up on macOS and Apple's support would have a far worse impact on my work than giving up on a slightly beefier hardware.

Ultimately, almost any computing solution comes with compromises, particularly if you need portability. I do not think Apple's offer is perfect, at all, but it still happens to be the one that meets my needs the best. The day this is not the case anymore, I'll look elsewhere.
 
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Mr. Dee

macrumors 68020
Dec 4, 2003
2,337
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Jamaica
I am a fairly recent owner of a Mac; bought my first in fall of 2015. I have admired the Mac for more than a decade on the sidelines being a Windows user. I still use Windows and I describe myself more OS agnostic these days. I own four Windows PC's plus my MacBook Pro and a iPhone 6s; I also use Ubuntu Linux. All of them are used for some activity or another. Sometimes I switch between Linux and Windows 10 and take confidence in knowing I have access to all my files thanks to the many cloud services I use.

One of the things I learn't with my Mac is, don't get trapped into the services or the apps. Although, I am editing some videos and photos from my friends wedding in iMovie - there is just nothing comparable on Windows. All my photos are now synced to OneDrive and Google Drive instead of iCloud. Apple is trying to play a nasty game of wanting you to pay more Apple Taxes even after purchase - not falling for it. I try to use a mixture of apps that still fit my needs, but take advantage of the Macs unique capabilities.

For those who feel like they being held hostage, I think a lot of it boils down to psychology and Apple marketing. Because of the good, better, best strategy, you will never be satisfied if you don't have the best model. I don't look at it that way and I am sure users who jumped Windows to Mac in the 90's never looked at it that way either. The average Mac user in the 90's and 2000's likely settled on a iMac G3 and a iBook and kept it for years. They lasted long and met the needs of most users.

What ended up happening with the Intel transition, many Mac users fell into feeds and speeds trap. If it doesn't have 32 GBs of RAM; the fastest Core i7 processor and the fastest GPU, it was never good enough. The same goes for storage. The trend is, you need a minimum 512 GB SSD to survive, when in reality, you don't and I can tell from the 256 GB SSD I have in my MacBook Pro - I have yet to go over 160 GBs, this is with 3 Windows 10 VMs, lots of pro apps installed, my music, photos and documents.

Another thinking embraced with the Intel transition is future proofing - you gotta have the best so it will last you 10 years. The day you buy any Mac, it starts losing value, yet, I saw 333 MHz G3 iMacs launched in 1998 being used up to 2007 for graphic design work. The user was designing an assortment of graphics with it using Adobe CS2 and it worked just fine. These days, if you don't have Photoshop CC or this or that app, you are missing out, when in reality, its just a industry treadmill marketing tactic to get you to spend more money.

For me right now, I am pretty satisfied, although I am considering an iPad 12.9 and even the iPhone 7 Plus or 7s Plus when it becomes available. I don't necessarily need either, but I want them, just because.

My solution, get the cheapest, use it and be happy; looking back at where we are coming from, todays technology is a steal. Besides, so much of our workload have been spread across devices: smartphone, tablet and your computer. The idea you need to have a monster, is not necessary anymore. I can tell you, not many will be buying a iMac Pro and those who do, are probably gonna keep it for more than a decade due to its upfront cost.
 

groove-agent

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 13, 2006
1,106
838
It's not bad planning, Apple changed. The Tim Cook era Apple is different from the Steve Jobs era Apple.


I buy Apple because its the best and the cheapest tool that meets all my computing needs in a way that make me satisfied. If you feel that you invested too much into the ecosystem to get out, well, that sounds like bad planning on your side :)
 
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Appleaker

macrumors 68020
Jun 13, 2016
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I think now is a between period with Macs, there are going to be some big changes in the future that we can look forward to. For me, the only things I would do to the MacBook Pro where it is a no compromise machine for me is to: add a USB-A port, add a SD card slot, have a physical escape key (or have function keys and the touch bar). Then it wouldn’t be a hard decision for me and I’m sure many others. Despite using both operating systems regularly, I don’t like the idea of switching my Mac usage to a PC. Right now the iMacs are the only Macs i have no complaints about, although the idea that the next years model will have a 6-core processor and possible a redesign, as wel as the other benefits, is offputting. Their whole MacBook line needs a rethink.
 

ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
1,155
I don't think they are holding us hostage. Rather, the company is just changing like all companies do (otherwise, they would not be a company for long.) Depending on someone's personal preferences and usage situation, those changes might not coincide with their needs/desires.

I don't think one can fairly attribute this to Tim Cook. His vision of Apple might be different than what Jobs' saw, but many of the (heavily criticized) projects being attributed to Cook began during the Jobs era.

Apple has, over the last decade and a half, made a strong push for vertical integration. However, this isn't holding us hostage. If they moved to horizontal integration, at that point I would call it keeping us hostage.
 
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William Payne

macrumors 6502a
Jan 10, 2017
931
359
Wanganui, New Zealand.
If everything is to be believed on this forum then I must be weird as until I got my Mac Pro at the start of this year my only Apple product was my iPhone and an iPod shuffle. I was a 100% Windows PC user.

I think the biggest thing is that I never got myself into any kind of ecosystem, I had my iPhone yet all my computing was done on Windows.

The world did not end and I never felt limited. However I do love the way my iPhone talks to my Mac (that really is a neat thing they have done there).

I had 2 options when I got my Mac Pro, build fully custom windows PC or buy my Mac Pro. I chose the Mac Pro. The apps I use are not locked into an operating system but what I like on my Mac is the things that are just natively built into the OS, like time machine and raid support. It is also incredibly easy to use.

If you buy a Mac you don't have to buy an iPhone, if you buy a Windows PC you don't have to buy an Android phone.

You just buy whatever you want.
 
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v0lume4

macrumors 68000
Jul 28, 2012
1,789
3,550
To echo @Mr. Dee , do not use Apple's services. Use services that are platform-agnostic. It's 2017, for Apple to expect it's customers to be locked down to just one company is silly.
 
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PBG4 Dude

macrumors 68030
Jul 6, 2007
2,773
1,978
Apple certainly has me trapped. Show me equivalents for GarageBand and iMovie on the Windows side. Then have the GarageBand imitator connect to a companion app on my iPad so I can have a customizable multi-touch control deck for it. Then throw it in with the cost of a Windows license, because I'm not about to spend hundreds on something to replace what I get in the box with any Mac.

I paid $30 for Mainstage 3. What would it cost me for a Windows program that could do the same? Remember, Mainstage 3 comes with all the synths, drummers, and effects included with Logic Pro X.
 
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jerryk

macrumors 603
Nov 3, 2011
5,683
2,840
SF Bay Area
I am not sure why you feel you are being held hostage. Both Windows and MacOS offer great experiences and I use both (and Linux servers) almost every day.

On Windows and MacOS I use the Office to manage document, spreadsheets, presentations, and cloud document storage and interchange. I use Adobe products for my photography and video work. These days everything plays well together and I can even do some work on my tablets or phones.

There are a lot of choices these days
 
Last edited:

Mr. Dee

macrumors 68020
Dec 4, 2003
2,337
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Jamaica
Apple certainly has me trapped. Show me equivalents for GarageBand and iMovie on the Windows side. Then have the GarageBand imitator connect to a companion app on my iPad so I can have a customizable multi-touch control deck for it. Then throw it in with the cost of a Windows license, because I'm not about to spend hundreds on something to replace what I get in the box with any Mac.

I paid $30 for Mainstage 3. What would it cost me for a Windows program that could do the same? Remember, Mainstage 3 comes with all the synths, drummers, and effects included with Logic Pro X.
You are probably 1 one in the few million who are setup like that. For some, its a psychological thing just to say they have, but don't actually use it. This week was the first time I opened iMovie since I bought my Mac just to edit some videos and package it together for my friend. I am sure if I was only using Windows 10, the discontinued Live Movie Maker or Story Remix would have been just as sufficient.
 
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Septembersrain

Contributor
Dec 14, 2013
3,808
4,565
Texas
I feel like a guinea pig. There is always different suppliers and one is always inferior. You can't be an early adopter or you risk a 50% chance of getting said inferior product.

From TSMC VS Samsung issue with battery life to Qualcomm VS Intel on data/reception... It's getting old.
 

iregret

macrumors 6502a
Jan 23, 2012
522
117
I buy Apple because the build quality is always reliable, all my toys play well together and I can run linux and windows if I need to. I catch a lot of **** for using Apple gear, but I have found that people just tend to be polarized one way or the other. I think it's built into human nature. "What I've got is better" type of mentality. It's "my team" sort of thing. I don't really get that, but then again, I'm in school to become an engineer so things look like collections of parts to me. I don't typically align with one side or the other..

Mostly it's because of reliability and Apple's stance on privacy though.

That being said, I take no issues with windows machines whatsoever. There was a time where Mac stuff was more expensive and the build quality reflected that, but nowadays, there are plenty of windows machines that are plenty awesome!

I've played with eGPU setups since 2015 and I'm stoked that Apple (and everyone) is finally officially supporting things.
 
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greenmeanie

macrumors 65816
Jan 22, 2005
1,144
301
AmigaWarez
I would of went Surface but being only Dual Core CPU turned me off fast.

Ok so a tongue-in-cheek post here...

After all these years, buying several Macs, iPhones, iPads, Mac-only software and the Apple watch, do you ever feel you have no choice but to keep buying Apple?

I love my 2012 cMBP but it's starting to die. Looking at the current offerings of laptops I'm rather disappointed: no ports, glossy screen, only 16GB of RAM, impractical/ gimmicky touch bar - but my main gripe is the value for the price.

On top of an already expensive core system, you then get gouged for SSD and RAM upgrades. Add all the USB C adapters or docking station plus AppleCare (which you have to purchase sooner than later), you're looking at the price of an (albeit used) car! Ok, yes I have the cash to spend, but I just can't pull the trigger. It just doesn't make sense to spend that much money on a laptop unless it's going buy me Starbucks, wash my car, and clean my cat's litter box.

Despite this we still buy them. Why? Because we're invested in the Apple ecosystem. They have us by the short and curlys and know that we have no choice but to pay the price, or start all over again in a rough transition back to Windows. I love MacOS, but am not a fan of their current hardware. The MacBooks are a series of very expensive compromises. If only other computer manufacturers could license MacOS. It's almost like a monopoly, but not. I can see why Hackintoshing is becoming so popular yet reserved for the tech elite.

I just came back from Best Buy and couldn't find anything to spend my money on. It was depressing. I was even contemplating the Microsoft Surface because a laptop and tablet for the price of a MBP seemed like good value IMO. Fifteen years ago I would have laughed at the idea of buying a Microsoft-made computer. What is the world coming to? ;)

Of course I'm exaggerating, but does anyone else feel similar?
 

SteveJUAE

macrumors 68040
Aug 14, 2015
3,158
3,151
Land of Smiles
All premium laptops are expensive :)

However

I really think this ECO is overrated and a lot of points are relatively trivia mixed up with clever marketing, just pick that works best for you regardless of brand
 
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filmbuff

macrumors 6502a
Jan 5, 2011
856
201
I'll be honest, I'm totally stuck. I was thinking about what would happen if I wanted to get the next great Samsung phone instead of another iphone. I would have to give up:
-easy syncing with my macbook and ipad
-photostream
-Foreflight and a couple other apps

If I wanted to get a Microsoft Surface instead of my Macbook I would have to give up the same things, and a bunch more. So I basically can't leave unless Apple somehow goes so far downhill that I'm willing to ditch it all and start over on a new platform.

Fwiw, I used to have all Windows PCs and an Android phone. Never touched an Apple product until well after I started college.
 
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