People want it both ways

There is a documentary on Netflix I am watching called “Revenge of the electric car”. It has some big names who were interviewed for it. Elon Musk, Bob Lutz and so on. It is fascinating their thought process and reasoning.

Now in case you didn’t know Bob Lutz was the guy who killed the electric car EV1 that everyone loved in the later 90’s. He forcibly took them from owners, and crushed them. This did not win him or GM any love. A decade later, GM starts to develop an electric car The Volt because of competition from Tesla.

You might remember that when the Chevy Volt was new the campaign to get respect was on. I remember hearing that Jay Leno supported it, and since Jay is a big “car guy” that makes it credible right? As you watch the documentary you can’t help but laugh at the irony and ignorance of the people you are watching.

People want it both waysFor example, Bob Lutz says that because the US has offshored and outsourced everything, for the automotive industry to die  domestically, it would deliver an economic disadvantage that the US could never recover from. Lets unpack this statement for a moment.

  1. Who has outsourced and caused this problem in the first place? Is it the lowly factory worker who decides that it would be better for society if his job were eliminated because of cheap steel from China? No, it is the CEO’s like Bob Lutz that argue that business can’t be competitive without this outsourcing. People want it both ways. They both want the benefit of cheap labor, while somehow maintaining an economic base domestically.
  2. How can you have people afford to buy cars if they don’t have jobs? Henry Ford said that he paid his workers enough so that they could buy his product if they wanted to. That is management. You have to pay the workers so they can afford your product and others. We will never have economic progress if we try to cut people off at the knees. You can’t work people and not pay them so they can’t afford to buy what you are selling.
  3. The domestic auto industry dying. What a joke this is. It has been dying for decades!! How many times have car manufactures been bailed out? Does the name Chrysler mean anything to anyone? Then GM almost died. I wish it did. We proclaim “free market” yet we protect business who made serious errors in judgement and kill US citizens. I think GM in hiding the product defect with the ignition switch killed at least 100 people and had to settle with them. Ford killed at least 50 with the Pinto. How many have died with foreign brands? I don’t recall anything like this for non domestic brands.
  4. If the domestic auto industry dies then it deserves death. People buy what they perceive as better. No domestic car has come close to anything the foreign companies have been able to make until Tesla. My next car will be a Tesla and I am saving up for however long it takes to do that. It is ignorant that car companies have kept the gas engine this long when they knew it was hurting the environment. Mr. Lutz I’m looking directly at your lack of leadership on this issue. The future belongs to the youth, and we won’t accept gas engines anymore nor companies who profited from them.

I have made it clear that my experience growing up with parents who only had domestic cars was a disaster. For them having a mechanic and seeing him regularly was just expected. It is not normal for cars to have constant problems, yet how many people accept this? I had a coworker tell me that her Jeep was in the shop 20 times in the 4 years she had it, and it was constantly broken. This was a new jeep not some used piece of junk. That is completely unacceptable. That is something to be embarrassed of, not something that is considered normal.

Tesla is the only US-based car company that has a chance. The other companies are dead they just don’t realize it yet.

Have you restarted your iPhone lately?

I had a client call and say that Bluetooth on her iPhone wasn’t working properly. It turns out that restarting her iPhone fixed the issue.

An Apple genius has told me in the past that whenever there are weird issues that rarely happen with iPhones it often is due to low memory. So I asked if they should be rebooted regularly and he said yes. He said that he doesn’t have any issues with his iPhone and he turns it off and back on every week. So since then I have suggested to people to do the same.

I am fortunate that I don’t need to use my iPhone much. I see people who use it all the time. I really only use the iPhone as a phone. I rarely use it to play games, use apps or any of the other functions it can do. To me, it’s mostly a phone and music player. However, even for this it is overpriced.

Let me be clear, I am not discounting the iPhones value for people. In fact the statistics show that mobile computing is growing and things like desktops are being left in the past. I think much of this is due to the convenience of having a device that can access the internet in your pocket. However if I had to be honest, Internet access on a mobile device is overrated and not really necessary.

There are so many problems why using the Internet on the iPhone is a problem. Besides the limited screen, it is generally slow and unfortunately a worse experience than using a laptop. Marketers have chopped up the idea of compatible webpages into proprietary experiences and ruin the value of the person on a mobile device.

Have you restarted your iPhone lately?For example, try to go to Yelp on your mobile phone. It will demand that you download their iPhone app. I am not arguing that the app may be superior than the webpage, but it should be a choice not a forced thing. You can not read the extended reviews without downloading the app. The web is about choice, and this is the wrong way for a company to go. You encourage people to use an app, not force them.

Then there are webpages like Forbes that will block you if you are using an Ad blocker. This is especially annoying if you click on an article from a friend on LinkedIn and then a screen comes up telling you to not use an Ad blocker. Well who put us in this situation in the first place by having more ads than usable information?

So you pay the money to have data on an iPhone to access the Internet, and then you are paying to download Advertisements? I don’t think so. Not only does it cost money, but it costs time, and marketers don’t think mobile users have a choice? We have a choice, and that it not to visit your site again and not to use a mobile device to access your site.

The problem I see with mobile devices is that in the effort to make money on you, the experience is compromised compared to a laptop or non mobile device. Most webpages look terrible on mobile devices and while that is improving, it is still a terrible experience for most people. Not only is the usability low, but also your efficiency. Using an iPhone to do web things always takes longer than using a laptop to do the same task. It just doesn’t make financial or time sense.

Yes, I hear you saying, what about those who can’t afford a laptop and a mobile device due to economics. Then of course use a mobile device. However if money is no object, using an iPhone is less effective and less fun way of using the Internet. It’s up to everyone how they spend their time, and I know how I want to spend mine.