The MacBook Pro’s throttling issues are fixed, but Apple hasn’t solved its biggest problem: Quality control

“I have a prediction. At some point over the next month or so, Apple will issue an update to macOS High Sierra specifically designed to address an issue caused by the macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 Supplemental Update,” Michael Simon writes for Macworld. “Granted, it might not be as highly publicized as the thermal throttling bug, but I’m betting there will be something Apple needs to correct that rises above the usual universal big fixes and performance tweaks.”

“I hope I’m wrong. But until Apple builds up a cushion of reliability, there’s no reason to think its new product launches, updates, and even patches won’t be riddled with bugs and issues, some so big that they make headlines,” Simon writes. “Apple has always prided itself on selling trust to its customers, and right now, it’s just not there. And as we head into the biggest season of Apple releases, that’s not exactly inspiring confidence in new iPhones and a redesigned Apple Watch.”

“Some would say that Apple is too big, juggling no less than four major OSes and five product categories that all need serious attention (and that’s not even including HomePod and AirPods). Or it could be the sheer pace of yearly updates that is causing things that should be caught to go unnoticed until it’s too late,” Simon writes. “But those problems should have been corrected by now… I think the problem is systematic due to a softening of Apple’s corporate culture in the wake of Steve Jobs. No one expected Tim Cook to be able to replicate Jobs’ ability to innovate—though to be honest, I think the Apple Watch and AirPods are products that would have made Steve Jobs proud—but Cook also brings a softer, friendlier management style that clearly isn’t getting the same results.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Would that our warning from January 2015 were heeded years ago:

Dear Mr. Cook,

“It just works.” That’s getting tougher and tougher for us OS X and iOS users to say with straight faces lately.

Apple, while certainly still the best when it comes to desktop and mobile operating systems, needs to do better. Our expectations, some of us as users of Apple products since the early 1980s, are not being met when it comes to the quality and reliability of operating systems, software, and services. Used to be, you could pretty confidently install brand new operating systems from Apple. Recently, we’re more inclined to wait for a few point releases than not. It’s downright Microsoftian. Lately, for the past couple of years, your software seems rushed. Is “rush job” really the impression you want to give your customers?

Slow down! Getting it right is far more important than getting it out.

Frankly, we don’t need a new Mac or iPhone/iPad operating system every year and Apple Inc. doesn’t need it, either. Annual OS releases shouldn’t be mandated. What we all really need, customers and Apple Inc., are operating systems that are rock solid and do what they’re supposed to do when they’re supposed to do it. Why not just add new features/services to existing OSes with continued point releases that refine and extend the experiences and services you want to deliver? Why not just release new operating systems only when they are rock solid and ready?

In other words, take a step back, take a deep breath, and focus on making sure that what you have now just works. Because too much of it doesn’t (Wi-Fi connectivity for one ongoing, glaring, vexing example). Getting it right is far more important than having two “new” free OSes to release each year. Seriously, nobody outside of Cupertino very much cares. We do, however, care very much that Apple’s software and services work as flawlessly as possible…

Bottom line: We long to again be able to confidently say of our Macs, iPhones, and iPads: “It just works.”

Sincerely,

MacDailyNews

If Steve Jobs were to walk back in the door today (if only!), heads would roll.MacDailyNews, April 5, 2017

SEE ALSO:
Apple CEO Tim Cook plummets in Glassdoor’s tech CEO rankings – June 20, 2018
Tim Cook: ‘Maybe we should have been clearer’ over throttling iPhones with aging batteries – January 18, 2018
Apple product delays have more than doubled under CEO Tim Cook – January 5, 2018
Apple CEO Tim Cook paid close to $102 million for fiscal 2017 – December 28, 2017
At Tim Cook’s Apple, Steve Jobs is long gone, and so is the ‘it just works’ ethos – December 19, 2017
Tim Cook’s sloppy, unfocused Apple rushes to fix a major Mac security bug – November 29, 2017
Under ‘operations genius’ Tim Cook, product delays and other problems are no longer unusual for Apple – November 20, 2017
Apple CEO Tim Cook: The ‘operations genius’ who never has enough products to sell at launch – October 23, 2017
Apple’s Tim Cook reaped $145 million last year, most of S&P 500 CEOs – June 30, 2017
Apple CEO Tim Cook plummets 45 spots in employee ratings – June 22, 2017
Who has taken over at Apple? – April 5, 2017
Walt Mossberg: Apple’s software needs work – February 3, 2016
Open letter to Tim Cook: Apple needs to do better – January 5, 2015
Apple CEO Tim Cook falls from 1st to 18th in Glassdoor’s tech CEO rankings – March 15, 2013

36 Comments

    1. Steve Jobs quality was MUCH better than Cooks company. This is why people are complaining about Apple not paying attention.

      Remember the whole mobile me fiasco under Jobs. He fired the employees right in front of everyone at the assembly. (That’s how the story was told anyways)

        1. Only a weak-minded apologist would attempt to construct such a feeble straw man.

          Nobody said “there [were] never issues under Jobs,” but Apple was demonstrably better run and routinely produced products of higher quality (and on time and in sufficient quantity) under Jobs than under Cook.

          1. A weak-minded apologist – that gave me a good laugh.

            Instead of talking in generalities, please provide specifics on how quality has declined under Tim Cook. Currently, the iPhone X has the best resale value of any iPhone (http://fortune.com/2018/07/23/apple-iphone-x-value/). The iPad product line has shined with an extremely competitive and high quality $329 entry product that no competitor can touch. Not to mention, the higher end iPad Pros have decimated the competition. The new butterfly keyboard design on the Macbooks does have an issue and I wish Apple handled that better. But Apple is delivering high quality, high volume products year after year.

            1. “Instead of talking in generalities, please provide specifics on how quality has declined under Tim Cook.”

              If you don’t already know apologist fanboy, you have not been paying attention. Do your own homework the examples are over MDN for years. So are you acting dumb or does it just come naturally?

              Posting one metric of success (X Resale value) does not begin to negate all the Apple negatives that allude you …

            2. A few trolls and whiny little bitches on MDN is not evidence of some substantial issue.
              SERIOUSLY — let’s see some facts and figures — from a reputable source — comparing modern Apple to the old Apple… and to other computer and phone companies.

        2. I didn’t say there weren’t issues under Jobs.

          I gave the mobile me example as you pointed out as well. I said it was MUCH better under Jobs. That’s all.

            1. You are asking for tabulation that does not exist to my knowledge.

              It is crystal clarity clear that more problems exist under Cook than Jobs. It is not even close.

              You are asking others to do your homework. So it’s obvious you have not been paying attention since 2011 … 🙈🙉🙊

    2. PCs and Windows start cheap so problems are expected from the get-go.

      Apple gear is all premium (allegedly), and should rightly be held to higher standards. Standards they’re failing to meet.

      1. When Steve returned and Apple had regained it’s step (largely), he laid out a blueprint using a stool as a symbol (2001-ish). It was a stool with 3 legs symbolizing Apple’s most important sectors. He was intent on refining and creating excellence in these sectors and leaving behind the extraneous.
        Apple is way beyond 3 legs and there’s no turning back, but Apple would do well to refine and prioritize in a similar manner. Steve proclaimed it as a company-wide credo. Everyone knew it was the new focus, new goal.

        Tim needs to corral the minds and wills of all at Apple and demand the cruft and extraneous to be jettisoned in pursuit of Apple’s solid stool. People hunger for the refined excellence vs the “Big AAPL News” of the day that includes, broad selection of iPh colors, new leather MBP sleeves, bigger v-emoji library, or SJWarrior-ism that only virtue signals.

        Frankly, I don’t expect Tim to be anywhere close to this refinement mindset. His history doesn’t support it.

    3. Its all the secrecy. They can’t possibly line up enough testing and QA, while at the same time trying to keep it under wraps so they can have a release with as few rumors as possible.

    4. PC manufacturers don’t claim to have the highest standards, quality and certainly not price. They don’t claim “it just works” either.

      They keep expectations low and then quietly exceed them.

      I was as big a fanboy despising Microsoft for decades. That ended five years ago when my employer switched to PCs. Not my first choice but not as bad as I originally thought.

      In the middle of a production cycle workday my hard disk died. Within a couple hours, IT pulled it out, restored my software/files from network backup servers, reinstalled the new hard disk and I was up and running. Try that on a Mac, Pro or otherwise.

      Nuff said …

    5. “While I agree”

      You don’t agree. This post started out that way then immediately deflected to PC manufacturers. Read the rest of your posts and you accelerated your fanboy apologist defense. Puhleeze…

    1. What’s check mate? The fact that Apple is good because it’s better than crappy Android.

      Apple is supposed to deliver premium products to premium customers at premium prices. The fact that you can spend $2000 on a computer where the Intel chip throttles and the software for the T2 chip crashes is delivering a non-premium product.

      The fact that crappy Android is worse is not a check mate or of any interest to anyone at all.

    1. Fortunately, Mojave is still in beta! I have had crashes and slow performance in News, Photos and Preview.

      More importantly Mojave still has unfixed issues (crashes, incorrect behavior) from previous Mac OS releases.

      I don’t care if Apple has to do 20 beta releases. Go back through the reported bugs database and start fixing them one by one until you can check them off as permanently fixed.

      Doing this would go along ways toward restoring confidence in Apple.

      Just fixing high profile issues helps only a small portion of those who have placed trust in Apple. To fully restore trust Apple needs to reassure everyone that they are paying attention and actually fixing the issues not just the high profile ones.

  1. No, the thermal problems ARE NOT fixed.

    Apple issued a firmware patch to mitigate it’s self-inflicted bad software design. Running the fans harder will help somewhat, of course.

    You will find out in the upcoming weeks that the MBP cooling system, hardware which has been unchanged since 2016, is still incapable of letting the highest power chips run at their rated clock speeds for extended times.

    Apple knows this. Why do you think Apple is trying to sell eGPU dongles????

    The problem isn’t the reviewers, the benchmarks, the chips, or the software. The problem is Apple getting sloppier with each year, putting fashion ahead of actual performance – bad hardware design and NOT TESTING SOFTWARE THOROUGHLY BEFORE RELEASE.

    For the premium prices Apple charges, stuff like this should never happen. But then, this is Cook’s Apple now. I told you he was a poor caretaker within the first year, and was rebuked for complaining. Well there are no excuses for shoddy product development, and I stand by my assessments.

    Apple needs to take the Pro label off of ALL its products. Apple today doesn’t know what the #$%^ Professional means.

    1. “The problem is Apple getting sloppier with each year, putting fashion ahead of actual performance – bad hardware design and NOT TESTING SOFTWARE THOROUGHLY BEFORE RELEASE.”

      You hit the nail squarely on the head. Function, reliability, and usability have all been sacrificed for the sake of ascetics. Tried using Apple Maps lately? Thin gray roads on a white background with yellow lettering may look good to some, but when you have it in a dash mount at arms length, is completely useless. This proves that either they’re not using their own products, or ascetics take precedents of functionality.

    1. And apologists gotta shill.

      There are serious fundamental problems at Apple’s design and QA leads, and I say that as an Apple and Mac fan (and AAPL shareholder) who wants the company to do better, and respect their professional base, not just focus on consumers and useless fashion-driven design on their high-end, expensive products.

  2. If someone botched a product during the Jobs era, they were reamed, often publicly. No so under Pipeline. Noone gets called out. It’s one botched product launch after another, and Pipeline does nothing. It’s even ridiculous to call what Pipeline does “leadership”. No one cares about Pipeline at Apple. They live in their own world, completely devoid of any contact with customers. That’s why the Trash Can appeared. No customer wanted or asked for a Trash Can computer. Pipeline delivered one anyway. Pipeline doesnt care about Apple’s traditional customer base and that’s why a good many have left.

    They were abandoned by Pipeline.

    The iMac Pro does not solve this problem, no matter what Pipeline says.

    Needed products are not developed and those that do often have very severe flaws. This is all the fault of Pipeline.

    Apple will NEVER survive into the future under the leadership of Pipeline.

    1. I guess SJW Cook wants to be liked rather than respected and feared like Jobs was. And, because he’s not an engineer, all he can show is disgust but can’t offer a conceptually engineering solution like Jobs could.

      I think he’s over his head and this growth in market cap hides it.

      1. “I guess SJW Cook wants to be liked rather than respected and feared like Jobs was.”

        Exactly right. Recalling previous management training it is IDEAL to be both liked and respected. Sometimes the odds are not in your favor for whatever reason. In that scenario, respect is the most important of the two. Cook probably believes in the opposite.

        Agree Cook does not have the detailed tech chops to lead this juggernaut of innovation. OK, Steve liked him. Steve also recruited Sculley …

  3. I bought a MacBook Pro 2018, top-of-the-line model and I’m having intermittent issues with the speakers crackling. I’ve seen a bit about it online and Apple hasn’t admitted or addressed the issue yet. After shelling out $4,200+ for the world’s best laptop, the last thing I expect is crackling speakers 🙁

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.