Space Ramblings

It Takes a Newton

Gosh who’d have thought that escalating a war with your customers by disabling their phones with your updates would actually make your customers reluctant to download the updates. That’s where Apple is finding itself now after its update bricked customer’s iPhones. Now Microsoft has had to learn the hard way that as much as they want to protect their corporate property, if they don’t allow even unlicensed customers to patch their copies of Windows with security patches, they become responsible for an escalating security problem that will ultimately backfire on them.

Apple in their arrogance however has yet to learn that lesson and feeling over confident over the Mac’s supposed invulnerability to viruses, Steve Jobs has not yet gotten it through his head that there’s a big difference between people won’t bother with it and ‘impossible’. Where the Mac was a small fish in a big pond, the iPhone is a big fish and it belongs to the sort of customers who are likely to have deep pockets, lots of personal information on it and possibly even business transactions via shopping sites. That means the iPhone’s security will be a priority both for black hat hackers as well as for Apple. Instead Apple focused on using the update to destroy people’s hardware, which makes it a whole lot less likely that even the most innocent users will be particularly jejune about downloading Apple updates because now Apple updates are associated with killing your iPhone.

That means protecting the iPhone from real security threats as opposed to people who just want to use the iPhone as they see fit has become a lot harder.

Smart move Apple. It takes a Newton to pull that off.

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