Meteorological autumn is here. Bah. Shouldn’t be allowed. *waves fist at sky*

Published stuff

My column for Stuff this week is: Apple endorses right to repair – here’s why it’s not the big win you might think. It is a win of sorts, but from some coverage, you’d think tinkerers had won the lottery. In reality, we’re seeing demands for making the system more equal, not making the system better. And, of course, the proposed legislation does nothing for those who want to truly make devices their own.

Over at TapSmart, I dig into Apple reinventing answering machines. Warning: may contain snark.

Issue 283 of TapSmart’s sister mag, Swipe, is now available too. We offer a free trial and then it costs $2/£2 per month, for which you get two issues. If you can support our indie journalism, please do.

Upcoming stuff

As Retro Gamer gears up for issue 250, I recently realised how much I miss talking to people who created ancient games. Over at Mastodon, I scratch my retro itch with #DailyRetroGame, but… it’s not quite enough. And so I’ve been noting down gaps in Retro Gamer’s making-ofs and looking at what I might be able to do with games I’m keen to explore.

No guarantees. In my experience, it’s quite random whether people who put together amazing games back in the day will talk about them decades later. But I’m hopeful to at least get one or two new articles in this space out sometime over the coming months.

Other stuff

Quite a few apps I’ve written about in the past have abruptly moved to subscriptions. What’s interesting is how they’ve done this and what they’ve decided to charge.

One, notably, appears to be charging an annual fee equivalent to the original one-off price. That seems reasonable for something you use often. But others have decided on annual figures that are many multiples of the original one-off price. In one case, the annual cost rivals six months of a streaming TV service, for an app that’s good but not anywhere near a daily driver.

I do struggle with this. I get that devs need to make a living. But I’m also one of many people with subscription fatigue. I’m not sure what the solution is. Really, Apple should long ago have allowed devs to offer upgrade pricing, but it obviously prefers subscriptions, because that means ongoing revenue. The question is how many subscriptions an individual can tolerate, and what levels of pricing can be sustained for anything beyond apps and services people consider vital. Alas, I’m not sure I have any answers.