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Apple’s cardinal sin – a more complex user experience (UX)

by Andrew White  |  April 5, 2014  |  5 Comments

Anyone have a problem listening to their own recorded music on the iPhone recently?  Check out the community boards – there are loads of users that are upset with Apple.  With the recent updates to iTunes and iOS 7.1, Apple has finally gone too far.  In its interests to increase (I assume) capability, the company has good to far and made it way too hard for users to play music.  There are not too many switches and controls that need to be set.  Worse, the default setting once you upgrade ensures your music experience will be changed.

I really can’t figure out how to play the gigabytes of vinyl I have recorded as MP3’s and stored on my iPhone.  After the upgrades, less than 40% of my record collection will play, even though the iOS and application suggest all the tracks have downloaded.  You go to play them, and randomly (it seems) many tracks don’t play and a no infamous red circle and square inside presents itself.  Anything purchased on the iStore works fine – of course.  But there is no logic why one MP3 plays, and another does not.  No single switch seems to explain what is going on.

I searched online and find that many users have had, and continue to have, the same problem.  To date there are several proposed fixes.  Few seem to work for the masses.  None have worked for me.  I have tried playing with settings all over the place (iTunes, Music, General) and nothing fixes the issue. Worse, you try something and suddenly what didn’t play then does.   But the next time you start up your music, some other non-downloaded-from-iTunes track stops working.

I bet this has to do with Apple’s cloud stuff – I just have a feeling…

This is so frustrating.  Worse, this is anathema to Apple.   This should never happen.  Apple was the King of self-evident UI.  There was one switch for each feature and its easily found and worked as described.  Now it seems darn near impossible to fix and makes me wonder if Apple DNA has been tainted.

It is such a violation of Apples’ singular strength that it begs the ultimate question: Has Apple come down to earth and now like any other vendor, over engineering what worked just fine?  It’s a shame.  Camelot has been lost.  Certainly you won’t find it with one button any longer.


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Category: consumer  inc  user-experience-ux  user-interface  

Andrew White
Research VP
8 years at Gartner
22 years IT industry

Andrew White is a Distinguished Analyst and VP. His roles include Chief of Research and Content Lead for Data and Analytics. His main research focus is data and analytics strategy, platforms, and governance. Read Full Bio

Thoughts on Apple’s cardinal sin – a more complex user experience (UX)

  1. Barry says:

    “the company has good to far”

    Yeah, they’ve really let their quality assurance slip…

  2. […] Apple's cardinal sin – a more complex user experience (UX). by Andrew White | April 5, 2014 | 4 Comments. Anyone have a problem listening to their own recorded music on the iPhone recently? Check out the community boards – there are …  […]

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