Consumer Bill of Rights for Software Updates


This morning I attached my iPhone to my Mac so I could import some of my latest Thanksgiving pictures. I have done this particular sync perhaps a 100 times in the past, but today I was in a hurry and wanted get everything on my Mac so I could  shoot an e-mail out with the new pictures. Yes I know it is possible to send email from an iPhone directly, but the tiny little box of screen is like working with my eyes closed and my hands behind my back.

Upon initiating the sync, my Mac informed me that something needed an update to complete the operation, not sure why, but it was adamant there was no other way. I clicked the update button and 20 minutes later the update was still running so I gave up. Have you ever wanted to scream “I DON’T WANT THE UPDATE! I AM COMPLETELY HAPPY WITH THE WAY THINGS ARE!” Shortly after this incident, I remembered how congress had passed a bill rights for airline passengers. I suspect as our electronic equipment becomes essential to every day life, somebody is going to come along with a bill of rights for technology users, so I thought it would be a good time to get a head start.

Bill of Rights for updates to smart devices:

1) Tell the user how long an update is going to take before they click a button. If you don’t know how long it will take, then make it a two step process where step one calculates how long it will take, and step two is the update.

2) Give the user an easy option to see what is in the update before they click.

3) Never force a user to take an update unless there is some radical change in technology that requires it.

4) Give the user the option to cancel the update in progress at any time without any consequences.

5) Don’t let your engineering team make some lame excuses as to why you can’t follow the Bill of Rights above. I would be glad to come in as consultant and help make your update process follow the Bill of Rights, and yes I can write the code if needed.

* Yes I am guilty of not always having the best update process for our product line. However we are getting much better. :)

7)  Don’t make a user close applications during the update. If you can’t figure out how to update your software with my applications open than see 5) above.

8) These rules apply to smart TV’s and cable boxes – I missed the first 5 minutes to a big game last year while my visio TV updated itself.

Coming soon the Bill of Rights for truth in Bandwidth Speed and why the Internet is not intended to run video.

The original Computer Users Bill of Rights.

Related Internet Users Bill of Rights

2 Responses to “Consumer Bill of Rights for Software Updates”

  1. Internet Users Bill of rights « NetEqualizer News Blog Says:

    […] Consumer Bill of Rights for Software Updates […]

  2. NetEqualizer News: December 2012 « NetEqualizer News Blog Says:

    […] is the second article in our series. Our first was a Bill of Rights dictating the etiquette of software updates. We continue with a proposed Bill of Rights for consumers with respect to their Internet […]


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