Originally Posted by Firefly7475
He said the smartphone "as it emerges more will become your most personal computer" and went on to talk about smartphone technology he had seen in the labs where a user looks at the phone, "instead of seeing a screen it can beam individual rays of light into your eyes right on your retina ... [so] you can look at your phone and see HDTV".
No, thank you. I prefer to keep my vision. And while we've gotten used to the vision of people seemingly talking to themselves and wearing devices that make them look like they're part of the Borg Collective, will future decades bring us a population frantically waving body parts around in order to interact with their devices? Virtual vertical screens (even physical vertical screens) don't work for touch interaction: try keeping your arm up in the air for five minutes - it's very annoying. Steve has alluded to the fact that he understands this. I don't think the competition does - I think they're going to attempt to go there.
Many have posted that there have been major transitions away from classic products in the PC industry, but I would make the case that there's actually been little transition: while there may be more use of laptops as opposed to desktop machines, in most business environments, people still sit at desks to use their computers and those computers have full-size keyboards and screens. All the enhancements in screen size, memory and storage have been incremental. In fact, one could make the case that with the use of laptops over desktops/towers, screen size/resolution has actually decreased over the last few years.
One technology does not replace another. They co-exist at least for a while. TV did not replace radio, although it affected the business model and as a result of that, it affected the nature of the product. Cable TV did not replace broadcast TV, although it affected the business model, etc. Online TV will not completely replace Cable TV, etc.
So we're going to have smartphones, Pads, laptops and desktops for quite some time. They each have different uses. I would not want to be typing Word documents on my phone or even a Pad. Even typing this response would be much slower on a Pad.
When Apple finally implements full wireless sync, that will actually help the older form factors survive, not hasten their demise.
As for Apple, I believe that the iPhone and iPads are the most successful consumer electronics launches of all time. The sales numbers are so incredible, it makes previous consumer launches seem trivial in comparison. The previous "winner" was DVD players, which took 21 months to achieve 1 million units (According to Greystone Communications, the Yankee Group). MP3 players took 38 months. The VCR took 58 months. Cable TV took 144 months. What did it take Apple at least from the 2nd iteration of the iPhone? 2- 3 days? Apple took the phone market, which was primarily based (outside of the Crackberry) on giving subsidized phones away for free or close to it and turned it into a market where the masses were willing to pay $200 of the cost (and generally pay a higher monthly bill) in return for great functionality. That is an incredible accomplishment. And finding that space between the phone and the laptop in a market that already had viable and less expensive ebook readers was also an incredible accomplishment. Apple has also had its best financial performance during the worst economic downturn since 1929. Imagine how they're going to do if the economy ever gets going again. And all this from a company that was perceived even by its supporters as "overpriced" and "niche". This is what is driving Microsoft, HP and Dell crazy. What they never understood is that while people bought their products, they only put up with them. They didn't love them. But people love their Apple products.
Some have posted that Apple doesn't give us their version of the future -- instead they just release products. That's true, but I think that Apple has some real surprises in store for us over the next decade. The combination of the North Carolina server farm and the new Apple campus (which is several times the size of the current one) tells me that Apple is planning to launch major new businesses that we can't even imagine as yet.