Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

"
If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

"
Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Friday, February 5, 2016

Warm Up the Class-Action Lawsuits; Apple Edition

Apple's latest iOS update will brickify your iPhone 6 if it was repaired by anyone other than an Apple technician.

Imagine this scenario: Your car threw its fanbelt and you had your local mechanic put in a new one. Now, six months later, your can won't start, at all, and your local dealership says there's nothing they can do, that you need a new car. You'd be some pissed off, I bet. Even if the car companies could do this, they wouldn't, because even a Hahvahd MBA could see how that'd backfire in the court of public opinion.

There is something about the big tech companies, like Apple and Microsoft, that seem to make them feel that they can get away with being assholes to the world.

Upon them I wish a plague of lawyers and FTC complaints.

11 comments:

The New York Crank said...

I'm no lawyer but....

Seems to me, there's grounds for an anti-trust action here. Go get 'em, lawyers!

Yours very crankily,
The New York Crank

CenterPuke88 said...

As I understand it, it's related to security and the touch sensor. Well and good, until it bricks the phone without any warning...that's what's gonna cause much drooling in law firms that specialize in class-action suits. I understand the principle, i don't understand why this fact was kept proprietary...actually, I do know.

Deadstick said...

"He had to pay £270 for a replacement "

...and he DID? That speaks volumes.

Tod Germanica said...

Apple spins this as security but the 'unauthorized' repair (read cheaper than Apple's) does NOT brick the phone until ios updates weeks or months later-basically the typical Apple 'closed garden' price gouge. Suck it up and love it, Apple fanbois.

Snowdog said...

If this story is accurate, it's not so much a way to brick for using a non apple repair center, but it's a security feature to keep someone from stealing a phone, swapping the fingerprint sensor and then accessing credit card info on the stolen phone.

http://gizmodo.com/apple-confirms-that-if-you-mess-with-your-home-button-i-1757330938

So basically if you take your phone to Joe's phone repair, and he knows what he's doing and moves the sensor, it's fine. If you take it to Billy Bobs Budget phone repair and he doesn't, it's now a brick.

samuel glover said...

If this story is accurate, it's not so much a way to brick for using a non apple repair center, but it's a security feature to keep someone from stealing a phone, swapping the fingerprint sensor and then accessing credit card info on the stolen phone.

At best you can say that the implementation of the security system, hanging it all on fingerprint sensors, is idiotic. If "security" is so dependent on a component that might be bypassed with a little soldering, then maybe there is some perverse logic to destroying the whole device if something seems off.

Ultimately, what does the fingerprint scanner accomplish? People no longer need to endure the hellish labor of entering an eight-character authentication code -- is that it?

The whole cock-up is perfectly in line with the Apple "philosophy", as taught by Maximum Leader Jobs:

1) Distract the suckers with shiny things. The dopes will actually pay more for it.

2) Centralize centralize centralize. But make the dopes think that being told what to do makes them precious artistic snowflakes.

3) Bring the hammer down on any violation of (3).

Here's a nice monologue on this from a 3rd-party repair guy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tOaWuvTjFg

samuel glover said...

Some clarification about the iPhone security setup: Users aren't required to use fingerprint scanning (Touch ID) for authentication. They can turn the feature on, or they can authenticate by typing in a text string. Or they forgo either kind of authentication scheme.

So Apple's argument for Error 53 is even more batter-dipped and deep-fried in bullshit, because it trashes iPhones regardless of the user's security practices. If TouchID is enabled, it might make some sense to render data untouchable if the sensor's been tampered with. But if the user has never set up TouchID, the sensor's identity says nothing about whether the device has been stolen. Yet OS updates will still trash the phone.

samuel glover said...

So basically if you take your phone to Joe's phone repair, and he knows what he's doing and moves the sensor, it's fine.

Except that in practice Apple provides no support to 3rd-party shops. No schematics, no diagnostic software, nothing. As in, they won't even sell these tools to repair shops. And apparently swapping fingerprint sensors requires some custom ROM programming (i.e., proprietary software running on special-purpose hardware), which, again, Apple keeps to itself.

Maybe most hilarious of all is this: Apple's hot to sell stuff all over the world, but it's not interested in supporting its stuff all over the world. Customers in places like Africa -- which is not a small market, and likely to grow enormously -- are being told to hop on a plane, because the nearest "authorized" service center is thousands of miles away.

Anyway, nobody can say that Apple isn't making an impression.

Comrade Misfit said...

What you do is not get an iPhone with that stupid sensor in it.

I've got a 4s because it was a free hand-me-down. When i started acting wonky after getting wet, I bought another one off of FleaBay. I have no intention of getting a new one. Hell, I know people who have iPhone 2 units and they're happy with them.

BadTux said...

If it was about security, they would simply have disabled the fingerprint sensor after detecting that it had been tampered with. They wouldn't have disabled the whole phone.

Believe me, I've written this kind of firmware before, and that's exactly what *I* would do -- disable the sensor, not disable the phone, I mean. Disabling the whole phone is a major dick move.

Comrade Misfit said...

Disabling the whole phone is a major dick move.

The new economy companies don't believe that the rules apply to them. They're above that, so they think.

Because they are dicks.