At MSNBC.com PCWorld, Dan Tynan wrote as follows in 5 Apple marketing tactics that lock you in: When you buy one of the company’s devices, you often have to buy others:
"Once you enter the Big Tent of Apple, it's exceedingly hard to find the exit.
In a posting at the Mises Economics Blog at the Ludwig von Mises Institute, Jeffrey Tucker writes in Apple the Monopolist about the damping effect that Apple is having on innovation:Over its 33-year history, Apple has consistently elected to limit consumer choice, creating a situation known as "lock in." As soon as you start buying stuff from Apple, you'll find it difficult to move to products made by someone else without losing everything you've already paid for....
[N]o other technology company exercises the same amount of control over what its customers can and can't do with the things they bought...." [emphasis added by LawPundit]
"There is something very wrong here. Innovations are supposed to advance the social order, not merely cause everyone to cling to a single company ....As Bastiat said, all innovation goes through three stages:
- one firm possesses unique knowledge and profits from it
- others imitate and share in profits;
- the knowledge is widely shared and no longer profitable on its own, which thereby inspires new knowledge.
What Apple’s patents do is artificially prolong the first stage — to the detriment of all." [emphasis added by LawPundit]We agree with that conclusion, but do not share Tucker's glowing view as expressed in that same posting about the innovativeness of Apple, which is grossly overstated and highly misjudged in the world by the uninformed.
As written by Mike Elgan at PCWorld:
Apple has historically been a very good rip-off artist and has admittedly been superb at following a monopolistic strategy of proprietary rights for its own products, to the exclusion of all others."[W]ho's innovating now? The LG KE850 was winning awards for its full-screen, touch-screen, on-screen keyboard before Jobs even announced the iPhone.The best thing about the iPhone and iPod Touch -- the warm-and-fuzzy multitouch UI with gestures -- wasn't new, either. Various labs have been demonstrating similar UIs for more than a decade, and even Microsoft demonstrated a fully realized 3G UI in May, well before Apple shipped the iPhone....And Wi-Fi in a media player? Ha! Microsoft's funky Zune had that almost a year before Apple did and SanDisk's Sansa Connect with Wi-Fi was released last June. Apple even stole the name for its iPod Touch product, according to HTC, which sells a touch-screen smart phone called the HTC Touch.Don't get me wrong. I think Apple's execution of these features is far better than its competitors'. And it would be horrible decision-making to not build the iPhone simply because others pioneered key features. But that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about Apple doing what Microsoft did: dominating the market with features other companies had first. If it was fair to slam Microsoft over Windows, it's fair to slam Apple over the iPhone and iPod Touch."
FORCE -- not CONSENT or CHOICE -- is the Apple trademark: it is the antithesis of democracy and the free market system. At the same time Apple is stealing "OUR", the people's words, for their greedy commercial use: apple, pad, tunes, pod, tablet, touch. Apple created none of these words or the goodwill attached to them -- they simply steal them. WORDS belong to the people, not to some company. Why is this theft allowed by the law?
The company is unworthy of emulation, not only because of its monopolistic practices, but also because of worker exploitation and infliction of damage to the environment.
- Musgrove, Mike (June 16, 2006). Sweatshop Conditions at IPod Factory Reported. The Washington Post [Wired reported virtually the same thing in 2010 - nothing had changed]
- "Environmental Group Hits Apple" [the worst rated of all the electronic companies for environmental pollution]
Other more gullible types can fill their coffers -- such consumers pay the bill for over-priced, over-hyped products being sold in large quantities only because competitive innovation has been stifled -- as currently is happening world-wide in the Apple suits against the entire Samsung Galaxy line, where the Galaxy S smartphone and the Galaxy Tab 10.1 are simply better products than what Apple is selling, and that is to be expected. Samsung is a manufacturer. Apple manufactures none of these products while Apple's design claims to a thin, flat rectangle with rounded corners are absurd.
As written at DailyTech in the Gadgets blog by Jason Mick:
"This isn't the first time that Apple has accused competitors over something it itself is doing. Apple chief executive and co-founder, Steven P. Jobs has bragged about his mastery of stealing ideas from others, stating [video], "Picasso had a saying - 'Good artists copy, great artists steal.' And we have always been shameless about stealing great ideas.""Rather than innovate and improve, Apple has sued and is suing Samsung to try to get Galaxy products banned from the market as alleged design infringement copies. Why compete when you can monopolize?
Apple does not compete -- it tries to eliminate the competition. That is the sad history of this ugly company.
The most famous example is the lawsuit by Apple against Microsoft, in which Apple tried to monopolize the market for graphic computer displays, even though they stole the basic idea from Xerox (and I personally remember well seeing some of the first bitmap-type images at SLAC at Stanford, long before Apple existed) -- quoting from the Wikipedia:
"Apple Computer, Inc. v. Microsoft Corporation, 35 F.3d 1435 (9th Cir. 1994) was a copyright infringement lawsuit in which Apple Computer, Inc. (now Apple Inc.) sought to prevent Microsoft Corporation and Hewlett-Packard from using visual graphical user interface (GUI) elements that were similar to those in Apple's Lisa and Macintosh operating systems. The court ruled that, "Apple cannot get patent-protection for the idea of a graphical user interface, or the idea of a desktop metaphor [under copyright law]..." In the midst of the Apple v. Microsoft lawsuit, Xerox also sued Apple alleging that Mac's GUI was heavily based on Xerox's. The district court dismissed Xerox's claims without addressing whether Apple's GUI infringed Xerox's. Apple lost all claims in the Microsoft suit except for the ruling that the trash can icon and folder icons from Hewlett-Packard's NewWave windows application were infringing. The lawsuit was filed in 1988 and lasted four years; the decision was affirmed on appeal in 1994, and Apple's appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court was denied."That lawsuit defeat has not kept Apple from following its monopolistic path, a path which permitted DOS and Windows to become the world standard for computers while Apple was forcing its users to buy only their proprietary products in their closed marketing system. As could be expected, the open system won out over a closed monopoly -- and it always will. Apple still has not learned that lesson.
Open systems ALWAYS win in the end, because open systems are the only ones that lead to the future. Closed systems lose because they are always dead ends. It is an old rule from Wall Street. NO ONE is bigger than the market.