Technology gadgets just are not like they used to be, right? Remember when everything just worked? No. Nothing has ever just worked. The nature of hardware and software in the 21st century is much like it was in the 20th century. Things happen. It just costs more to get something repaired.
Here’s a good and recent example. Got Apple Watch Series 4? Some owners found the upgrade to watchOS 5.1 was, well, buggy. No. Not buggy so much as bricked. As in dead. As in Apple Store cannot repair it.
What’s going on?
Technology life in the 21st century isn’t about it just works. It’s about mitigating what goes wrong. Andrew Liszewski:
There’s always a risk involved when grabbing the latest software update for a device as soon as it’s released. You want to try out all those new features, but there’s bound to be a bug or two discovered as the masses get their hands on it. That gamble didn’t pay off for some Apple Watch Series 4 users, who discovered that watchOS 5.1 bricked their fancy new wearables.
Not mine. Not Wil’s.
But a co-worker had his shiny new Watch Series 4 brick into the Apple logo. Apple swapped it out with a new one because it was purchased just recently. Other Apple Watch owners had to send theirs into to be repaired. The lesson? Wait a few days before applying a major update to fix bugs because some have problems of their own.
A few of the writers at Forbes magazine have taken to calling minor blemishes nasty surprises. What would they call a real nasty surprise?
Apple, of course, isn’t the only major technology maker that has such issues. Samsung’s burning and exploding Note smartphone from a few years ago comes to mind. This year Google gets high marks for Pixel 3 and Pixel XL’s single lens, wide-angle camera lens because the search engine giant excels at computational photography.
The Pixel 3 XL is one of the smartest phones ever. And, at least temporarily, it’s also one of the ugliest.
Ugly? Oh, it’s the Notch, right? No. It’s dual Notches. Dual. As in two. Two Notches.
Pixel 3 owners are complaining that a second notch is appearing on the right side of their phones.,, owners are left to marvel at a notch twin just as deep and unattractive as the real notch towards the top of this flagship.
The problem? Screen rotation went wonky.
Apple is not alone with nasty surprises. It’s the nature of the business and it explains why Apple launches new iOS, macOS, and other operating system updates in late spring with a target for release in late summer. Time and beta testers are required to smooth out the wrinkles and pound down the kinks.
This new era means customers get to be beta testers for the first few versions. That’s the new age way to track bugs.