Recently, Cory Doctorow wrote about why he didn’t want an iPad (and why we shouldn’t either).
I don’t want one either – for many reasons. It’s the same reasons I don’t want an iPhone or iPod Touch as well.
On the iPhone specifically: I don’t want to be forced into a specific carrier. When will the iPhone be available for US Cellular customers? Probably never. When will the tying of the phone to the carrier be invalidated by the courts?
Also, will it ever be possible to take the iPhone and take it from one carrier to another? There should be no bundling of phones with cellular service; I should be able to choose whatever phone I want and use it with whichever service I want.
Secondly, you can only install applications that are approved by Apple – and these same applications can be pulled from your iPhone without notice (and without refund!). The approval process for new applications is slow and mysterious, and the secret developer’s agreement contains some very draconian measures.
Thirdly, the battery is sealed – so you can’t change the battery if it dies. If you need a new battery, you need a new phone.
The battery is not the only thing that is sealed; there is no way to put your own software on your iPhone or iPod Touch or iPad – no way to load Linux, no way to write your own software and load it up. If you write your own software with Apple’s Software Development Kit (SDK), then you are required to use the Apple Application Store, and no other – even if you are refused (which an application can be for any reason).
The iPhone is a locked-down environment like no other; why be locked in?