Thanks for writing this up. I read the whole thing and felt my pulse rising and falling as I went through it. I’ve been there many times, and it can be a totally frustrating experience.
I’ve been an Apple user since 1982 — and like you, I’ve bought dozens of Apple computers and products over the years. I fondly recall the early 2000’s when a faculty laptop resulted in a phone call and then a return box being FedEx’d to my house the next day — and a fixed or new machine showing up a few days later. No trips to the Genius Bar, no schlepping computers back and forth — only top notch customer service that my Windows friends could only gawk at.
I’ve been playing around with the new machines from Microsoft and other PC manufacturers. They are definitely superior hardware to the current line of Macbook Pros — and the reviews and objective pieces online bear this out. But I have such a comfort and ease with Mac OS… the keyboard shortcuts and workflow just fly under my fingers. I have a hard time believing I’d ever get that facile with Windows, but I suppose it would happen eventually.
For now, I’m mostly happy with my 2015 MBP, though it overheats sometimes and the battery is getting crappy. But I won’t replace it with another MBP until one is released with good reviews.
Again, thanks for writing this. It is helpful to hear about your experiences, and I hope Apple takes heed.