The Real Problem with Apple's Software...

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by hakr100, Sep 19, 2013.

  1. hakr100, Sep 19, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2013

    hakr100 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 1, 2011
    East Coast
    ...and just about everyone else's these days is that no companies seem willing to make the investment in having serious documentation written.

    I've got IOS 7 on my iPhone 5, and I've had a lot of questions, some of which were answered clearly and completely here, for which I am thankful.

    But Apple's user manuals (the IOS 7 one for the iPad and iPod are up on its site already) don't cover a third of the sorts of questions that arise, and there are no charts showing the various connections between its software, its operating system and its devices. You pretty much have to guess much of the time what impact a particular toggle has in another area. I've been using iPhones, iMacs, and Macbooks for a long time, and I find this is true throughout the product line.

    In the 1980s, I wrote documentation for a major manufacturer of desktop printers, and that documentation and much of the documentation I saw for other products, was complete. Not 100% complete, because no documentation ever is, but it was at least 75% complete. Today's documentation for high-tech personal devices is no more than a third complete, I would say. To find answers, you have to jump through hoops in many places.

    Documentation for the third-party apps sold on the App Store is even worse, or, worse than worse, non-existent.

    Vendors assume too much knowledge of product intricacies on the part of their customers.

    A plague on their houses. :p
  2. Lucille Carter macrumors 65816

    Jul 3, 2013
  3. KeanosMagicHat macrumors 65816


    May 18, 2012
    It's true, I thought I knew a reasonable amount, but I learned today I'd completely missed a Siri feature allowing you to teach him / her how to accurately pronouce contact names etc.

    There'll be loads more I'm unaware of despite having been using iOS 7 for a while now.
  4. ItWasNotMe macrumors 6502

    Dec 1, 2012
    If you write documentation it becomes bugs not features
    /End sarcasm

    IMHO real problem is Apple end to end process is extremely poor.

    Just taking the tail end of the process for the recent point update of OSX (10.8.5)
    - (Testing) External disks now put to sleep whatever option is chosen in Preferences, but there are theories that it is now determined by setting for the display sleep, was this intended, did the testing team catch the difference between behaviour and options proffered,...
    - (Documentation) No real release notes - was this sleep behaviour intended? Certainly wasn't announced. If it was then intended then this is poor analysis and use case design
    - (Release Management) Feedback site didn't (as of yesterday) allow you to tag OSX feedback with version that was released week earlier, so you either leave it undetermined or set to incorrect version
    - and so on
  5. hakr100 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 1, 2011
    East Coast
    Absolutely, and I am grateful for MacRumors and its participants, but its existence does not excuse Apple and the other purveyors from putting out decent and reasonable complete documentation. :D
  6. roadbloc macrumors G3


    Aug 24, 2009
    For me, the real problem with Apple's software is the lack of long term support.
  7. cube macrumors G5

    May 10, 2004
    No, the main problems are the dumb GUIs since Lion, and not caring about long term support.
  8. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

    Oct 31, 2009
    Near Dallas, Texas, USA
    The Windows 3.1 user's guide was HUGE. It has to be sitting somewhere in this house still.

    It's really hard to write documentation for always changing software. And the development teams can be just one or two people as the norm now. So writing a manual is more time consuming than drawing arrows and doing a quick start guide.

    Funnily enough, most of my iPad apps DO have manuals.
  9. Mr Rabbit macrumors 6502a

    Mr Rabbit

    May 13, 2013
    I typically find the contrary to be true. Apple has a huge knowledge base (KB) filled with support documents for their products.

    True though, it would be nice to have a regular old manual to read sometimes.
  10. SkyBell macrumors 604


    Sep 7, 2006
    Texas, unfortunately.
    I'm not a huge advocate of "+1" posts, but uh.. yeah.

    +1 :eek:
  11. djtech42 macrumors 65816


    Jun 23, 2012
    West Chester, OH
    One major problem right now is the lack of focus on OS X. I love iOS 7, but I hope they focus on an overhaul of OS X next year.

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