An open letter to Steve Jobs

Dear Steve,

I was a Mac evangelist for a very long time, but this is my first letter to you. I say that I was a Mac evangelist, rather than that I am one, because my love for your brand has been slowly dying out for many years now.

My complaints have included the following:

  • Hardware-wise, my iMac G5 is an overpriced piece of crap. And instead of having a recall, you waited for my motherboard to fry before offering me a free replacement.
  • Mac OS X is cool and all, but it’s not significantly better than Windows XP, much less Vista.
  • I don’t like paying through the nose for marginal OS updates. I can get widgets for free on a PC — why should I pay $130 for them?
  • Getting help at the Genius Bar is startlingly reminiscent of visiting the DMV.
  • Mac mouses still suck. I was so excited about the Mighty Mouse. “Mighty disappointing” is all I have to say.
  • You killed my Newton.

Apple Newton

But it’s that last crime that wounded me the most. I was a huge Newton fan, an early adopter. I used to lug that enormous brick with me everywhere I went. I loved the handwriting recognition (still better than on any PDA available today). I loved the cool little programs you could download and install. I loved being better than anyone who didn’t own a Newton.

It was a great little machine. Recently, CNET compared the Newton to a modern portable tablet — and the Newton won.

When you, Steve, regained control of Apple in 1997, I thought it was good news. And then you did the unthinkable. You killed the Newton. You murdered the entire product line. It wasn’t your baby, so you wanted nothing to do with it.

My Newton went from Best Gizmo in the World to Useless Hunk of Plastic.

Now, you’ve given the world the iPhone. It’s pretty damn cool — I used one today. Wired Magazine says it’s “surprisingly close to what a current-generation Newton might look like if Jobs hadn’t killed in the line….”

I agree, Steve. I agree.

That’s why I am asking… no, demanding… a Newton for iPhone swap program. Anyone who brings their working Newton into an Apple store can exchange it for a new iPhone. And no, we won’t need a receipt — that’s a cop out.

Reward the early adopters, Steve. The Newton was iPhone v.0. You killed it — let’s bring it back.


  1. Kunochan, I admire your love of the Newton. I would like you to take a stand against this new iPhone and resurrect your Newton. When you run into a group of iPhonians, iPhoniacs, or iPhoners demoing their brilliant new device, take out your Newton and show them what a true piece of technology looks like.

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