On Wednesday morning, if you searched on the iTunes App Store for Lexcycle, the makers of the top-rated Stanza ebook reader, you would see ‘no matches found’. I was alerted to this on the MacRumors forums, and did my own quick check and confirmed that Stanza was no longer available. While the news didn’t spin out of control as has happened in the past, it certainly raised a red flag – why is the best ebook reader, owned by Amazon, suddenly unavailable on the iTunes App Store?
Lexcycle seemed unaware of the problem. On the:
We are aware of the issue, and Apple is working to track it down. Needless to say, we are trying to escalate with Apple and get this resolved as soon as possible.
Within twelve hours Stanza was back on the App Store worldwide, but amongst the writers the issue was raised – why was it so easy to assume that Apple had simply decided they didn’t want the competition and pulled the app. It certainly wouldn’t be the first time, and they have had issues with Stanza in the past. And with the ebook focus of the iPad, it is easy to think that Apple might be starting to clear house of competing products.
But outside of Apple fan sites it would be hard to find a more sympathetic crowd than the Gear Diary writers. Most of us have some sort of Apple product, and many of us have been using their computers for a long time (for me it goes back to buying my own new Apple ][+ more than a few years ago). But the initial thought was ‘why did Apple do this … or was it just a glitch’?
So … have things fully turned around over the past few years from when Apple was the creative savior of all things digital and customer-centric producer of great hardware? Are they now the Evil Empire they formerly railed against? Have their seemingly random and often heavy-handed and draconian decisions begun to cost them goodwill amongst even fans?
What do you think? Have Apple’s decisions eroded confidence to the point where simple glitches are assumed to be nefarious inner workings? Do you believe that Apple has moved too far in this direction? What do you think it means for the company in the future?
Source: MacRumors forums