Apple is known for a lot of things, especially its polished hardware and great software. But the company also courts criticism for its not-so-affordable gadgets and a software ecosystem that locks users into the famed ‘walled garden’ whose walls have only kept getting higher over the years. Privacy, however, is one aspect that has been a central focus of Apple’s strategy, but not without some compromises, as highlighted by a recent report by TheNewYorkTimes. Telegram founder Pavel Durov – known for his vocal support for user privacy – has now cited the report to launch a scathing attack against Apple.
Durov’s diatribe begins with how Apple’s alleged acquiescence to the demands of China’s notoriously surveillance and censorship-loving state isn’t surprising because tech giants often prioritize profits over ethics. Durov then goes on an offense against Apple’s ‘totalitarian approach’ that turns iPhone users into what he calls ‘digital slaves’ – something that the Chinese government is also said to favor. And with Apple allegedly bending to the Chinese government’s will, the state now has complete control over the data of all citizens using an iPhone, he adds.
“Owning an iPhone makes you a digital slave of Apple – you are only allowed to use apps that Apple lets you install via their App Store, and you can only use Apple’s iCloud to natively back up your data.”
Talking about iPhones, Durov equates it with using hardware from the Middle Ages. The Telegram chief goes on and chides Apple for selling ‘obsolete, overpriced’ hardware that also locks them tightly into its software ecosystem. Durov specifically targets how iPhones, despite their high asking price, are still stuck to a 60Hz display, which means animations and general UI interaction is not as smooth as you would experience on Android phones with a 90Hz or 120Hz screen.
Durov’s criticism here is legit, as Android phones that cost a fraction of a modern iPhone have made the upgrade to 90Hz, 120Hz, or even 144Hz screens. Apple is rumored to finally embrace the 120Hz trend, but that perk will reportedly be exclusive to the ‘Pro’ models of its upcoming iPhones slated to launch later this year, and they will most likely cost a thousand dollars for the base model.