Exiting Apple in 2024 - The Final Upgrade

All relationships end. In particular American Corporations have a habit of peaking, then self-destructing. For me, after spending about 40 years as an Apple customer it was WWDC and the announcement of a partnership with OpenAI. My experience with Apple over my lifetime was that I was ok paying for a premium brand that treated me like a premium customer. Even the mention of a company as shady as OpenAI instantly destroys all brand value despite any promise Apple makes of firewalls. I read the smartest guys in the room and was alive to see it happen, this isn’t my first rodeo.

The kicker was I was already on my way out. I don’t want a casino slot-machine and giant TV in my pocket, just to call someone on the phone or navigate to a location. A good reason to rethink the effect of any smartphone can be found here in “The Anxious Generation”. The “tldr;” is that the data isn’t good.

It is time to exit Apple completely, go pure Linux and go to a dumbphone with some key utility Android tablets. I will document my thoughts as I solve the problems.

First Week

  • Was able to figure out I wanted to sell all Apple mobile devices. I did that via sellyourmac.
  • Found Reddit Dumbphones and bought a Sunbeam
  • Got some Yubi Keys (for auth to replace mobile like Duo or Authenticator)
  • Found from Linkedin comments to buy a Framework Laptop. Went with Framework Laptop 16. Repairable, and upgradeable is a competitive advantage over apple
  • Swapped my Sim from iPhone to Sunbeam, and went for a drive with a dumbphone and verbal audio from Waze and like it.
  • Turned off iCloud in preparation to completely Nuke Apple from my life as I replace it piece by piece.
  • Got a Garmin watch

Summary for the week, a distributed architecture, i.e. microservices, vs centralized is wise in the era of addictive tech. More next week.

Second Week

General Theme: “Cut until it bleeds”, i.e figure out what breaks.

  • Detoxing from continuous stimulation has left me incredibly refreshed waking up. Not having a slot machine + TV in your pocket takes a few days to get used to, but it is shocking how much better and energized I feel in the morning.
  • Used a very cheap “dumb” 99 dollar Lenavo Android and have it in my office with only Authenticator apps and Banking (This is like a utility box). No browser, etc.
  • General notes on wiping Apple products, follow guides for each device, i.e here is the one for iPhone
  • You can get a unlocked dumbphone Samsung android for about 70 dollars to use a single purpose device for car navigation and hook it up to a hotspot. The idea is to install just Waze or Google Maps + Music/Podcast.
  • A general note is there is tremendous advantage in cost savings by exiting Apple. It is easy to get a 300 dollar cell phone plan monthly and pay thousands in iPhone fees for a dubious value proposition (constant addiction and connectiveness). You can get a 15/month plan for unlimited talk and text and unbundle the data. Is Apple essentially blockbuster charging for late fees as a business model, i.e. useless upgrades with dubious benefits like sending data to OpenAI? blockbuster
  • Workstation is the next area of research and two key options I am considering are theilo and LambdaLabs

25 Times Cheaper Yearly (Apple Tax is Marketing Up Commodity Products)


As I dive deeper into how to cheaply replace Apple it seems like 25X is the markup by Apple for arguably inferior products. What is shocking is how Apple gets away with this tax. I can vouch that this stack of Android Table + hotspot with data + Google Voice + Google Maps/Waze and Spotify kicks serious butt as is about 100-200 bucks vs about 5k for a similar Apple setup.


Cattle vs Pets


You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars to get addicted to a smartphone…offline cattle style is simple a better architecture. Another way to consider the problem is how inefficient the problem actually is. Paying to be connected 247 is an anti-pattern.