“FireWire is still Apple Computer’s baby, but the proud parent is cutting the cord. With the latest crop of iPods, Apple is no longer including a FireWire cable in the box. The music players will still work with FireWire, if a cord is purchased separately, but only a USB 2.0 cable comes with the device. The move is part of a gradual shift on Apple’s part to standardize the iPod on USB, which is far more common in the Windows world,” Ina Fried reports for CNET News.
MacDailyNews Take: Is “cutting the cord” or “knifing the baby” more appropriate to use when describing the situation?
“Although Apple’s embrace has been gradual over several years, it is still a big shift for a company that helped develop the standard behind FireWire, technically known as IEEE 1394, and has been one of its biggest proponents,” Fried reports. “Some Mac owners were rankled by the move, saying that as recently as a year or two ago many Macs didn’t include a USB 2.0 port. As of Wednesday night, more than 1,300 people had signed an online petition calling on Apple to again include a FireWire cable with iPods.”
“When the iPod debuted in 2001, it used only FireWire, and even the second crop of iPods–the first to support Windows–lacked USB support entirely. It wasn’t until April 2003, with the dock connector-based iPods, that Apple first offered a USB 2.0 option. And then it was USB 2.0, which had to be bought separately as a $19 extra,” Fried reports.
Full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: The Apple iPod boxes used to read “Mac+PC.” Apple iPod boxes now read “PC+Mac.” Mac users ought to be able to “do the math” and get used to being treated by Apple as second class iPod users from here on out. Shareholders should be happy that Apple has a “money talks” attitude. Mac users, especially long-time Mac users, should be wary. Unless your Mac is less than 1 or 2 years old, you’ll have FireWire ports, but only USB 1.1 which transfers files much more slowly than USB 2.0 and does not carry enough power to charge an iPod. (And, by the way, even USB 2.0 can’t compare to FireWire 400 for sustained data transfer rates). Apple’s attitude toward most Mac users seems to be, “you’re in the minority, go buy the extra cord” or the usual “go buy a new Mac.” Getting “taxed” by Apple for being a Mac user really rubs us the wrong way. And exactly whose fault is it that we’re in the damn minority anyway?
What do we want from Apple? Respect for Mac users. In fact, we want better, we want preferential treatment for Mac users; it’s well-deserved. We also want Apple to provide to consumers the choice between a FireWire or USB 2.0 connectivity cable from (at least) the online Apple Store at the time of purchase for no extra charge. It’s not the lousy twenty bucks, it’s the principle. Do the right thing, Apple.
Related MacDailyNews articles:
Apple should include a combo FireWire and USB 2.0 cable in every iPod box – February 24, 2005
Petition to Apple for iPod FireWire support posted online – February 23, 2005
Apple knifing its own FireWire baby by pushing USB 2.0 as iPod’s primary connectivity option – February 23, 2005