Don't blame me this time for blasting Apple. There's a long line of tech writers, bloggers and, most importantly, consumers themselves with nothing but scorched earth comments about Apple's new social networking service called "Ping".
What a long few days it has been since Steve Jobs took the stage in San Francisco showing us Ping for the first time with all of us breathlessly watching it streamed live.
But here we are less than a week later and while Apple puts out happy press releases announcing its first one million Ping users in less than 48 hours (you have to wonder if its the same one million that bought an iPhone 4 and a iPad in those first days after launch); the masses are clearly not happy.
Some of the big complaints:
1. Spam and phishing scams. Apparantly, Apple didn't launch with much in the way of security like, oh say, filtering messages with dubious links and malicious messages promising free iPhones. The result is a hot mess.
2. iTunes 10, itself: home of Ping. In a word: it sucks. By all accounts its just clunky, hard to navigate and boots up about as fast as Windows.
3. Ping is anti-social. It doesn't sync up with anything - Facebook, your contacts, your music library. Some "social" network, eh?
But don't take my word for it.
Here are some choice quotes from other writers, note user comments on the links as well:
"The network is just another way to follow Lady GaGa."
"Adding a social networking interface, on top of all of iTunes' other functions, is like grafting another limb to the forehead of an octopus. It's just too much."
- Wade Roush, Xconomy, "The Leaning Tower of Ping: How iTunes could be Apple's Undoing"
"I would have expected more from Apple with this first attempt at building a community around iTunes. It's not all bad, but if Ping doesn't improve soon this music-oriented social network will bomb faster than an American Idol wannabe."
- Ian Paul, PC World, "Ping on iTunes: Not So Hot""
"A few days ago, Apple released a social network. Gee, how bloody creative of them and they used to be so cool. There are enough social networks, too many actually."
"Even Ping's ace in the hole, that it has access to all the information about music listening habits from every iTunes users, seems to have been botched. Instead of broadcasting to the world what music you, you know, actually like best and listen to, it only tells people what you bought or rated at the iTunes store."
- David Adams, OSNews, "Ping: Why Bother?"
"Simply put; Ping lacks spam and URL filtering"
- Larry Dignan, ZDNet, "Apple launches iTunes Ping: forgets the spam filtering"
As always, you are welcome to follow me on Twitter @oricchio (unless of course you want me to fill out a survey and promise me a free iPhone).