The iPhone App Conspiracy

They're killing the web and destroying your soul. Discover the 5 reasons why this writer thinks you shouldn't bother ever buying an app. (Apart from ours which will be out in a few weeks).
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Here’s what you do. You buy yourself a shopping trolley.

Not one of those scruffy tartan things that old ladies drag around – I mean a proper retail one; like you get at supermarkets. They cost about £150. Now, take your shiny new trolley to the nearest bargain store and load her up with some of the cheap tat you find on the shelves. Then go home and use your stash of items to customise that trolley – be creative, make it your own.

You could gaffer tape a hot-dog shaped alarm clock to the handlebar or attach a framed picture of an Alsatian to the front grill. Whatever you want – just express yourself. And this is the true genius of Apple.

This is what they have managed to get millions of supposedly intelligent people to buy into. Their customers don’t use trolleys; they use the digital equivalent - the iPad. This is the revolutionary device which has opened up a new frontier in the realm of buying shite you don’t need. It’s the Innovations catalogue for the Y Generation.

With just one sweaty finger you can wander around the virtual aisles of Apple’s App Store and choose from an infinite selection of digital bric-a-brac with which to customise your iPad or smartphone. The tiny bits of software you download are called apps. Last year these apps raked in more than $4 billion for Apple and with the recent launch of their Mac App Store for desktop computers its estimated that they’ll be making $27 billion by 2013.

Here are five reasons why apps are crap:


There are more than 300,000 apps currently in Apple’s store– about 20 of them are alright. Then you have the remaining 299,980: apps to remember where you parked your car, apps which play samples from Kick Ass, apps which repeat what you say in an annoying voice, apps to tell you the location of the nearest spiritualist...

If an alien race ever wants to justify the wholesale destruction of mankind – the apps store will be their star witness. Just spend some time browsing through the descriptions of what’s on offer and you’ll come to the conclusion that it’s time for us humans to step aside, let’s give somebody else a go.

To get an idea of what the apps store is like try this for size:

How fast are your fingers? Put them to the test and find out. iDragPaper is a unique speed game where you basically drag your fingers repeatedly to unravel an entire roll of toilet paper. It’s a race against the clock, to see how fast you can drag out the entire roll. There isn’t much else to the game.

Strategies include using either one finger and repeatedly dragging the paper or using multiple fingers to do the same. In classic mode a bug exists where you could trigger it and unravel the roll automatically, possibly as fast as one second. Normal mode is where you have no bugs and it’s just basic unrolling.

The paid version of the game features a few different themes that you can choose from to spice up the toilet paper, no ads and an extra advanced game mode. In the advanced mode if you move too fast your toilet paper gets ripped off. Don’t you hate it when that happens?

Their customers don’t use trolleys; they use the digital equivalent - the iPad. This is the revolutionary device which has opened up a new frontier in the realm of buying shite you don’t need.


Remember that old hippie thing called the World Wide Web? It was good; more than a trillion pages of information – the sum of all human knowledge, freely available and accessible within a matter of milliseconds.

But there was one major flaw – it didn’t make any money for Apple, or any of the big corporations. You could happily skip from an Idwal Robling tribute to a gallery of kittens in sombrero pics to an arc welding forum and the cash machine in Steve Job’s office would remain eerily silent.

The solution was apps - a way of commoditising the web. Apps enable companies to break off tiny bits of the internet, stick it into a shiny wrapper and flog it back to us.

Most of the contents is already out there – it’s freely available on the internet – so what we’re buying is the packaging and processing. We’re rejecting the offer of a free fresh pineapple and choosing to stock up on expensive tins of pineapple chunks.


With more and more household goods getting hooked up to the internet, apps are going to become a pandemic; a disease which will run roughshod through our homes. Nothing is going to be safe: a Family Guy sample for your toaster, a GPS navigation system for the lawn mower; all yours for just a couple of quid.

It’s a way of converting ordinary household goods into digital shopping trolleys. Your washing machine can finally start generating these companies some cash. But everyone’s a winner because while they’re making vast profits we’re going to be download all of the very latest washing cycles.

This process has already begun. There’s a range of new tellys about to come on the market which come complete with their own apps store.

The paid version of the game features a few different themes that you can choose from to spice up the toilet paper


You spend your life doing a job you don’t like. You make that sacrifice so you have enough money to buy stuff: the big telly, nice car, exercise machine, bread maker, electronic barometer, carpet bowls set, steam cleaner etc.

But then a terrible thing happens – you start running out of space. Your kitchen cupboards won’t take any more juicers. And it all starts to feel a bit empty and pointless. Why are you working so hard when there’s no gas powered bottle opener at the end of the tunnel?

Apps provide the answer. They memory available on a tablet or smartphone is the equivalent of a kitchen cupboard twice the size of Norway.

Crisis over. Get back to work!


Another problem with that World Wide Web was that nobody was in control. People were pretty much free to say what they wanted – that was kind of the point of it.

But things have moved on. Now we pay good money for our apps and we expect to be treated as customers. And the last thing we want is to have a pair of nice breasts thrust in our face when we open up our application of choice.

Neither do we want to see anything which is too controversial or may offer an opinion which could make us excitable. Thankfully Apple understand this and kindly censor which apps we can see.

It’s so much more civilised. Now we can spend all of our disposable income on shite we don’t need without fear of being exposed to anything which could tarnish the purity of our beautiful shiny industrially designed shopping trolley.

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