Five Disappointments of iOS 6

Posted:  June 25, 2012   By:    18 comments   

After the jump, is an interesting read from Jaime Rivera of But first, we have to make it clear that didn’t write the post below and neither are we claiming any ownership of the post published by the good people at

We’re posting Rivera’s work here because 1) we agree with all of the things mentioned in his article and 2) we’re posting his work here so you can offer your thoughts and give some local perspective on this very interesting discussion.

Has Apple really lost the plot? Or has the landscape changed so much and become so competitive that it is increasingly difficult for any one brand to really stand out? Has Google’s Android finally come of age and taken over? Or will iOS 6 and the new iPhone reaffirm Apple’s dominant position the mobile race?

Head over to after the jump for the full article.

Five Disappointments of iOS 6
Original article here.

There’s a lot to celebrate about iOS 6. Brandon’s recent editorial highlights the top 5 features we found most interesting, but after testing the first beta just a couple of days later, not everything has been fun and games. I could certainly add a ton of additional reasons why I consider that the OS matters, but today, it’s time to talk about the five reasons why I’m disappointed.

Let’s start this list with a disclaimer though. There’s nothing in these five disappointments that considers iOS either superior or inferior to other platforms. There’s no such thing as a perfect operating system, and the idea that one is better than the other is anything but objective. This is about iOS 6, and why we believe it could’ve done better

1. As of this year, it’s no longer “ahead of its time
Back when Steve Jobs released the original iPhone in 2007, he said that the operating system was “at least five years ahead of its time”. If any of you were using the Motorola Q9h or BlackBerry Pearl that I was using back then, you’d agree with me in the fact that the guy was right. Sadly it seems that nobody at Apple remembers that any more. Those five years are up, and sadly nothing that was released at WWDC has prepared iOS to leap ahead of its time again. Today, a natural user interface is no longer a feature. It became mainstream years ago. Even feature phones have flick scrolling, Opera Mini for improved web browsing, and yeah, they’ve been doing music for a while now.

iOS 6 should’ve been about where the puck is going to be next. Siri, while superior in many ways to whatever other platforms currently do, is still half-baked. iPhone OS 1 made the phrase “ease-of-use” change in meaning half a decade ago, but today, the concept is no longer a selling point. So my question is, what’s next Apple? Your reluctance to change a legacy UI makes you, not look like you.

2. Most of what it’ll do, it won’t do any better than others
When they’re timely, Apple is famous for launching products that define new standards. When they’re late, they usually leapfrog over competition with something dramatically better. iOS 6 is sadly nothing like that. Prettier maps are not necessarily the same as better maps. It doesn’t challenge the system to be any better than it already is. It’s just a late catch-up that’s great to have, but that won’t give you a reason to choose iOS over a competing platform.

Facebook integration? Been there, done that with Windows Phone 7 or HTC Sense. FaceTime over cellular? Third party apps have been offering video calls over cellular long before the iPhone’s own manufacturer figured it out. These reasons are no longer big enough to stir any customer away from the competition.

3. It still looks the same
Surely the wheel can evolve, but overall, it’s still just a wheel. With operating systems, that’s a different story. Can you imagine Microsoft launching a Windows Vista that still looked like Windows XP? The age difference between them is just five years, and still the user interface evolved for better or worse. The age difference between iPhone OS 1 and iOS 6 is exactly that, five years. Functionality has changed here and there, but eating chicken every day for the last half-a-decade must drive even some Apple employees crazy by now.

Even though I carry an iPhone 4S as one of my two daily drivers, I’ll admit that I’ve spent more time using HTC Sense on the One X that arrived on my doorstep a week ago, than this beta of iOS 6. I know this remark isn’t fair to all of you, since I know that for some people, what’s not broken shouldn’t be fixed, but my honest impression of iOS 6 is that I’m bored.

I do understand Apple’s purpose in keeping the grid of icons all over, but why not figure out some way to have UI profiles. If you’re a first-time user, you get the grid, and if you’re a power user, you can customize it differently. Hey, if Cydia could figure that out, I’m sure all those thousands of Apple Engineers can do better.

4. It brings more fragmentation
I’ve got to hand it to Apple here. Users of legacy devices probably don’t get everything in future updates due to hardware limitations, but they at least get some of them. The problem is when this fragmentation is not justified by hardware limitations. For example, as of beta 1, Siri is not supported by the iPad 2, whose guts are almost identical to what we find powering the iPhone 4S. And if the iPhone 4 and 3GS are getting iOS 6, why isn’t the first-generation iPad getting it? None of these technical decisions make logical sense, unless you add dollars into the equation.

We have seen Apple change their minds as betas keep coming to developers, so let’s hope this is just another phase where they’ll lighten-up sooner or later.

5. We’re stuck with it for at least another 18 months
Using a device that’s no longer ahead of its time, boring or no better than competitors isn’t easy in our times, but knowing that it won’t change for another 18 months is torture. Even if Apple released a new iPhone in the fall, which runs iOS 6 with some minor enhancements, nobody can switch phones every couple of months in this economy. Apple has slowly pushed users into adopting newer hardware just to get this new feature or that one, and it’s really not a good way to drive additional loyalty towards the platform.

The bottom line
This is not like if I don’t recommend iOS 6. Again, there are a ton of reasons why the iPhone 4S is still in my pocket running the beta. My biggest concern lies in its future. Apple seems to have fallen into a comfort zone that’s dangerous in this day and age. Competitors are no longer struggling to catch-up; those tables turned last year. For the first time since I started in this ecosystem back with the iPhone 3GS, I feel like it’s time to move-on. It’s in Apple’s best interest that people that agree with me, have real reasons to stick around.

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18 Comments for Five Disappointments of iOS 6


Time to sell Apple stock.


Apple are living in a comfort zone called the the innovator's dilemma. They are not willing to revamp IOS because they do not want to shake up their giant customer base. So we still have the same old clunky apps centric IOS6. Their last attempt at something bold was Siri.
Sometime it takes desperation to get a company started again, just like when Steve Jobs returned to a sinking Apple 1.0. Now Microsoft are doing it with WP8, completely pissing off their WP7 customer base to start a new.


    Who said ios was 5 years leaping ahead. They was soooo late and what they promote was actually available at others loooong time ago. Apple just sux.

Jani Loke (Ipoh)

Jaime Rivera of is realistic, thought provoking & mostly right.

Today when I look at the physical characteristics of iphone 4S and compare it with the slew of sleek androids,it looks so tame, so unexciting, so out of touch,so dated, so toy like.

Indeed the iphone of today is so yesterday (so 2007).

Can iphone 5 (err… sorry the "new" iphone) do any better (Look, they cannot even give a proper
name to ipad 3~ just show their lack of creativity from now on, or isssit from "new" on) ?

Without the genius of pushy Jobs, Apple is sliding downhill, slow & easy…
(anybody remember Sony Ericsson or Nokia ?)

Times change Baby, and apples do rot, you know


The fragmantation of Apple is no different from Android. Last time people complain Android so many models running different models 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 3.2, 4.0. Apple is smart is "cheating" consumers by saying all their phones are running the latest but actually not all phones get the same feature. Until now iPhone 4 cannot officially get siri.


    Did you really know what is Fragmentation? Apple is doing Generation of iPhone… Siri is not for developer… it's just another feature… If you really know technology you can compare with all the Android phone that some Application really not compatible with some Android Phone.


      He already stated is base on OS receiving by all iOS device not all get same "feature",example siri.not about "application" compatible to be run anot daa…..tak malu ker ask ppl know nothing about technology when u self dun even understand any,blast away ur blinded sloppy gun.

      No war pls

      Well,i"m android user, not the worshipping of either apple ios or android.just as normal phone user,i agree with u that some application not compatible with android.but at least i could try to run,really cant,i will give it up n just less a feature.ios dun even get a try taste of siri to ipad2 and iphone4,that really unfair to those early user that make apple a multi-billion empire,not even given back the sweets for early adopter.


    Like why can't 3GS get WiFi Hotspot like iPhone 4. Im sure hardware can support but Apple limit so that you are forced to buy new one.


After all people chose android just because they are more than what iOS can be. My thought is just very simple that is don't lag. I don't care much of what features or new UI or blah blah blah. Just want a smooth phone that won't lag. iPhone to me don't lag and my notes lag. That's it. Laugh at my simple thought


    Nokia 3310 also no lag….. ^^

      Sekinchan ikan bakar

      Ye …tarak lag.boleh baling peragut jugak…iphone mana boleh baling.


      Agree with you Yap 😀


    IOS doesn't lag because it can't multitask. Legacy Android devices lag because they multitasks. Compare that to your windows. Same concept. And btw, new android devices don't lag cos the firepower is there. Maybe you just don't know how to use android as my experience states otherwise.

    Oh btw I use apple and android devices. My preference is now android cos apple lacks the innovation and direction these days. Things are different now without the mighty Steve Jobs.


      3GS without multitasking also lag but im still using it occasionally. Juz got to be patient….wait…


Apple being Apple is probably holding back on its A game… I’ll wait till the next iPhones announcement to judge. Apple is releasing ‘just enuf’ so app developers will have apps ready for when iOS6 is official, and I expect holding back enough so that competition is caught off guard. I expect something good this September.


Nokia used to be an innovator, rich and famous & always at the cutting edge of mobile phone technology. Then came apple & android and fat Nokia couldn't respond, coz got complacent & lazy from years at the top.

Hungry Google/Android in 2012 is now doing what apple did to the rest in 2007.

Can slow & arrogant apple survive ? Hungry Steve Jobs tried but died trying.

Can the super rich & super comfortable Apple/Cook of 2012 innovate anymore ? Or have they become another dying slowly Nokia?


    Hungry Steve Jobs tried but died trying.
    you crazy bro??
    look at their cash flow, they are doing it right. at least for last year.

    every one should stop hitting on apple. even microsoft created rubbish like vista.

    and ios7 will changes everything again ^^


      yea no shit. Loving my S3. see you in a couple of years apple.