Opinions and Editorials
Apple has been under much scrutiny over the past several months, with consumers as well as competitors claiming the company is lacking innovation. That belief has put Cook under fire and for some time, and it looked as though the Apple stock would never stop falling. But the truth of the matter is that Apple isn’t lacking innovation at all, but is transitioning.
With Apple releasing a slew of new software and hardware updates within a six month gap, the question of whether this will be enough to recapture consumer interest has to come up. Apple has been under intense scrutiny over the past several months, with analysts and consumers alike claiming the company is experiencing an innovative lull, having been cruising on the products released under Steve Jobs.
Apple’s new iOS 7 has been completely revamped with a long list of new features and a variety of UI changes. The reason why Apple’s iOS in the original iPhone was so popular was because of its attention to detail. As the years went on and Apple released new iPhone models and new iOS updates to go along with it, it seemed that they lost some of this detail. In iOS 7, Apple did just that and focused entirely on reworking the OS from the ground up.
My immediate initial impression upon viewing publicity photos and animations previewing Apple’s forthcoming replacement for its long-in-the-tooth (and then some) Mac Pro desktop models was that this would be what the Mac Pro Cube could have evolved into had it survived. The simple, elemental shape, amazingly compact dimensions, and “thermal core” design for efficient, convection aided, vertical stack cooling all hark back to the general concept pioneered by the Cube 13 years ago.
Something’s different as we approach WWDC 2013. Samsung has made their pitch for innovation this year with look-away control for video and hand swiping for call answering. For me, Apple has to start looking bigger. We’ve endured a couple of years of incremental improvements. We’ve lived through enough evolution, not revolution.
Consider alone the impact Location Services such as Find My iPhone have had on all the unsuspecting love thieves out there. Find my Friends is another one; a service which is spectacularly useful for people when used in the light. But in the dark, the service becomes a frightening, incandescent bulb of truth, from which the cheater has little defense.
Thinking of possible product unveilings at WWDC 2013, I’m reminded of the garish clothes models wear as they strut down the walkway at fashion shows. Some of the clothes are ridiculous and others are beautiful, but none of them are worn by ordinary people. I think the tech writers want to be dazzled without a thought as to whether people will actually buy the products on display.
If you’ve read any Apple blog over the last few days and weeks, you may have noticed the buzz surrounding the potential arrival of iRadio on iOS at WWDC 2013; essentially a music streaming service along the lines of Spotify and Pandora. I love the idea, but, will it be enough for Apple in 2013? If this is going to be the flagship product for 2013, I think Apple will struggle to wrestle momentum away from Samsung over the next 12 months.
It’s important for us to recognize the impact of WWDC. Yes, it’s a massive marketing platform for a hugely profitable company. On a deeper level, however, it’s a technology spectacular with massive ramifications for the world’s tech companies and for billions of people.
If you have an iPhone or a Mac or an iPod, you’ll understand the magnitude and wealth of the possibilities on offer in iTunes: games, movies, music, apps, books…all the stuff you want, all in one place. The sad thing about it for me is that until Apple creates a different genre of entertainment altogether, I know exactly what presents I’ll be getting for the rest of my life!
I was saddened a bit to hear that the Camino browser development team is calling it quits. However, the proverbial handwriting has been on the wall for some time, with the pace of Camino development slowing, and pretty much stopping as far as Power PC is concerned. In recent years I never found it compelling enough to use over Firefox and the array of other excellent browser choices available for Intel Macs.
Apple did something risky and brilliant today when it introduced the new 16GB iPod touch 5th Gen. Replacing the entry-level 4th gen, the new 16GB iPod touch remains mostly unchanged; Apple removed the 5 megapixel camera and the new Loop attachment feature that is available on the 32 and 64GB models introduced last fall. In other words, the new iPod touch isn’t new at all, but instead offers customers a stripped down version of what is available already.