(21 September 2011)
The problem with the Blackberry App (or AppStore App (or whatever)) is that the apps version churn.
It seems like every week or two you get a notification that one of the four free apps you've downloaded has an "update", and you are encouraged to do the upgrade.
What's wrong with that?
Well, in my case I don't like doing the necessary reboot as part of the upgrade.
I also have not seen any improved functionality through any of the app upgrades I've done.
But the two big problems are:
Every time you do an app update (or at least, every time I've done an app update) I totally lose the preferences. And it is a pain to set them up again.
Seems like most apps erase their preferences out from under you when you upgrade, which looks like an uninstall-then-install process.
If I had a lot of apps, this would get to be a serious pain.
The second big problem is:
Not only do you lose your preferences, but you get to re-apply the list of permissions granted to an app every time you do the upgrade.
And the apps are getting sneaky about it too.
Exhibit A: a Free Flashlight program. Neat program. What it does is use the flash/videocam-light as the light source. Turns your phone into a nice pocket flashlight. Very usable. But since it is free, it wants to show you ads; and since it wants to show you ads, it refuses to run without the "connect to the network" permission granted.
Exhibit B: The WeatherNetwork's weather app. Not only doe this need the "connect to the network" permission, but it dies with a java security violation at startup if you have not granted it access to your location.
Now I don't want to use the "my location" for weather information, because the app almost always insists that I'm in Vanier when I'm really in Kanata. Which maybe I wouldn't care so much about if the "My Location" had useful information like "current weather" and "forecasting information", but when the app is guessing where I am, it doesn't. I'd much rather set the location to Ottawa and be done with it. Which actually I've done. But no, the app won't run at all if it can't see where I am. I have to open my privacy to The Weather Network to get this information.
Maybe that's more "incompetent" than "sneaky". Whatever.
Add in other problems like
- I never seem to see any new functionality to these upgrades, or at least anything I'd use;
- The bug list is either vague or stupid (one recent TSN.ca update said something to the effect of "rolling back fixes from the last release" and nothing else)
- Anything new seems to benefit the vendor, not me
...and the whole thing has soured me on Blackberry as a platform
Frankly I'm considering getting off.