Change happens. How we deal with it often dictates how well we deal with life. Technology companies are about change, too. If they adapt to change well, they survive; perhaps even profit. If they don’t, such companies become footnotes to history.
Remember Nokia? And BlackBerry? And Windows Phone? The landscape is littered with technology castoffs that didn’t change quickly enough to adapt to sea changes which occurred in their own industries. Customers have a similar obligation to pay attention to changes. Look at all those Windows PC users being held by ransomeware. They could have switched to a Mac but did not.
Even Apple’s customers sometimes are resistant to change. I have a few Mac loving neighbors still running OS X Snow Leopard. Why? “It was the best Mac OS ever!” For them, not much has changed since Snow Leopard. They run Mail, Safari, and a few other applications, but have decided not to move into the rest of the 21st century. I think of them as Amish Mac users. They’re nice folks, but something I can’t see is keeping them in a fixed holding pattern when the space time continuum doesn’t matter.
Like it or not, change happens and there is little we can do to stop it, alter it, or even get it to change course. Let me take the updates Apple pours out upon customers so regularly each year. We can’t grumble that such updates have much economic value to Apple because macOS and iOS are free. Apple is a hardware company. Software updates are the nature of the business and help to keep products secure, squash bugs, implement new features and functionality, and– except for the pain of learning something new or missing something old– make using technology a little better for everyone.
This week Apple pushed out another round of updates for everything. iOS. macOS, tvOS, watchOS. Did I miss anything? Oh, yeah. No update for Mac OS X Snow Leopard. I admit that Snow Leopard was one of the most trouble-free Mac operating systems in recent memory, but in all honesty, I haven’t had a macOS Sierra crash ever. Ever. Not even one from macOS El Capitan or whatever preceded Apple’s once latest and greatest.
These days I embrace the changes. I may wait a day or two after a release to get to an update, just to make sure I have a backup in place, but the changes in OS don’t burn like they once did. These days Apple mixes in security updates– which everyone should get– with bug fixes, feature updates, and new functionality. You don’t get one without the other, but I can live with that. Instead of two updates or upgrades, everything gets rolled into one.
What’s the benefit? Improved security should be high on the list. But learning to deal with incremental changes– updates and upgrades– is a better way to manage change in life than it is to stay back five or 10 years and then fear the massive change that ultimately will come.
So, thank you, Apple, for teaching customers the nature of change can be good. Thank you for such good customers service and a comfortable shopping, buying, training, and support system. But would you mind giving customers a few more choices and some user upgradeable options for future Macs?