The United States Postal Service, supported by customers and taxpayers via postage charges, federal appropriations, and even postage taxes in some states to the tune of roughly $75 billion annually, offers a “USPS Shipping Assistant” which is “free” software that combines all the functions you need to create labels (domestic, international, Merchandise Return and custom forms), ship packages, compare rates, calculate estimated delivery times, verify deliveries, request free Carrier Pickup, and much more.
“Free,” meaning, of course, that you already paid for it, if you bought stamps or paid U.S. and/or state taxes.
The USPS Shipping Assistant requires Microsoft’s Windows 2000, 2003, XP Home or Professional, or Vista and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer version 6.0, or higher.
In other words, in this case, Mac users need not apply, but keep buying stamps – and paying your taxes for nothing, of course.
Why does the USPS feel it’s okay to ghettoize Mac users? U.S. postage buying and taxpaying Mac users, does this seem fair to you?
You’d think that with $75 billion annual revenue, the USPS would be able to hire a Mac developer or two or a hundred. (If they weren’t bleeding $5.327 billion annually, that is. Ah, government efficiency; a bigger oxymoron than “Microsoft innovation.”)
According to research firm Gartner, Apple’s Mac comprised 9.5% of U.S. market in Q308 with the Mac growing 29.4% year-over-year, 30 times that of PC market. That’s a lot of postage buying/taxpaying Mac users left out in the cold, USPS. Tens of millions in fact.
Contact the USPS here.
The most important action that you can take, which could actually result in some positive result — as your vote is the key to their having the job — is to identify and contact your Congressperson in the U.S. House of Representatives about equal access to USPS software here.
SteveJack is a long-time Macintosh user, web designer, multimedia producer and a regular contributor to the MacDailyNews Opinion section.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “GizmoDan” for the heads up.]