Apple Listens to Suggestions! (Wish Fulfillment Edition)

Apple Listens to Suggestions! (Wish Fulfillment Edition)

Apple: Maybe they do listen to customer suggestions!

So a few weeks ago, my daughter Maggie got all hot and heavy into Dr. Who.  (I think for her it boils down to “David Tennant is hot!”, but for a nerd Dad, any excuse to get into something like Dr. Who is a good one!)  Because not all the old episodes are available on NetFlix streaming, Maggie asked if she could purchase a season or two from iTunes.  So in lieu of an allowance that week, yes, she got to purchase a season of Dr. Who.

The problem, though, was that as soon as I purchased them, I had to download every friggin’ episode.  Which was silly in a couple of different ways.  First, because she was going to want them on her laptop, not mine; she just needed me to purchase them for her so they would be available on the cloud.  And second, who wants to download 20-25 GB of videos that you know you don’t want right away?  But despite some searching in the support area of Apple’s site, and a nice chat with a support guy on the phone, I found that:  Sorry man; you need to download stuff when you buy it.  After that, you can download at will from the cloud, but in the interim, you have to do that initial download.

I wouldn’t say that I complained to the Apple guy; I just expressed my frustration that one is forced to download everything immediately, like it or not.  (And from the Apple message boards, I’m not the only one who has found that to be irritating.)  He agreed to forward the suggestion.  And frankly, I expected absolutely nothing to come of it. You can read about it in my post, here.

And then the other day I logged on, bought something, and was greeted with an Apple dialog button in iTunes asking me if I wanted to download my purchase now, or did I want to wait?

Look:  Delayed downloading is a small thing.  And I’m sure there’s not a direct hotline from Support to Tim Cook’s office where they say, “Hey, Doug Moran of Gear Diary wants this new feature!”  (If there were, there would be a less ugly “refresh” button for podcasts in iTunes . . .), but I was still pleased to see this feature that I had wanted suddenly popping up with no fuss.

So thanks, Apple; this one customer appreciates that feature very much!

About the Author

Douglas Moran
Doug is a nerd from way back, falling for a Commodore PET at the age of 15, and never looking back. Riding the nerd wave, he got a Computer Science degree and entered the tech industry at a young age, deciding after a year and a half of front-line phone technical support that he should try something, *anything* else. He settled on technical writing, and has been cranking out documentation for companies like Unisys, SGI, Cisco, Juniper, and many others ever since. He is nothing short of ecstatic to be working for H-P from his home base in Austin.
  • loopyduck

    It’s been a feature that people have long asked for… but maybe your comment was the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back 🙂

    • Naw; that’s why I subtitled this “wish fulfillment”. I *wish* I had that kind of power. More likely it finally bubbled to the top of the list of the iTunes programming team. 🙂

  • I think this is one thing that illustrated how Apple lagged in the ‘getting it’ factor of Cloud storage. When I buy music on Amazon or Google, I can download – or not – right away, or just leave it in the Cloud to use a cloud player. OK, maybe Google is a bad example since they have download limits …

    But I am glad that Apple has discovered the value of an ‘add to my account’ type of purchase.

  • What struck me was the short amount of time between me complaining, and the new feature arriving. I complained in early April and *bang*, a few weeks later there it was. It just felt good, be it coincidence or not!