Apple is making a lot of money and released a ton of improved products between March and October 2012. But their execution isn't exactly sterling, and they haven't created big wave in a long time. I'm not a "sky is falling" type by any means - I realize that this is part of their normal product cycle (heck, 6 years between iPod and iPhone). If we're honest, let's take a look at some less-than-perfect Apple news over the past year:
-new Retail chief Josh Browett screwed up royally. He got sacked, and no one has replaced him
-iPad Minis have a great design but feature mostly iPad 2 specs
-iPhone 5 brings LTE (finally) and a slightly bigger screen, but leaves a big hole in the market for those who want a big-screen, tinkerer types, and developing markets
-iOS 6 is a more mature platform than Android, but is getting very stale in the UI department. Still stuck in an "iPod syncing" frame of reference; content it still too siloed.
-OS X is still solid, but Mountain Lion was a fairly small upgrade. The last big feature upgrade was Leopard (2007), with Snow Leopard (2009) being the epitome of dependability and leanness. Since then it's been adding neat iOS-type features and getting slightly less reliable.
-Apple used to easily trounce competitors in UI. Now they have made "skeuomorphism" a household word.
-iCloud is great for contacts and calendars, but document sharing is extremely limited; general file storage is non-existent
-production of iMacs didn't really catch up to demand til February 2013
-iWork is still on version '09. Siri is still in "beta", whatever that means. -Maps was pushed out before it was polished to Apple standards. Realistically should have been an optional download for iOS 6 and replaced Google Maps in iOS 7.
Overall, I feel like Apple needs to pull back from its relentless "velvet handcuffs" approach. I think that if Apple can release some NEW products this year, that will certainly help. iOS needs some fresh blood, stat. Again, Apple is not doomed - but we are in a relative lull in product releases, especially when it comes to software & services. I have lots of hope since OS X is due for an upgrade, iOS can't possibly have another iOS 6-type release, and Jony Ive is taking a new look at interfaces.
I agree with most of this. Apple will be unstoppable if they can improve all of these this year, except for the bold part that I disagree whole-heartedly. Skeuomorphism is great. The problem is not with the look but how it functions. Make it function better. Don't change the look.
Do they? These guys are sanctioned by the most secretive company in the industry to talk about future products?
No I'm referring to the organizers, not Apple.
The host shouldn't have ambushed one of his guests with that wager at the end, that was quite inappropriate I thought. If they were having a conversation between mates sure, but not on a stage in front of an audience.
solipsismx wrote: »
If what you claim is true you can post some figures. Show me yours and I'll show you mine but I guarantee that my iPhone numbers far exceed the Galaxy S III numbers which are the highest shipping high-end Android-based device on the market today.
leighr wrote: »
There's an incredible expectation on Apple to invent new products every 6 months - and then complain because they invent too many new products.
It's true, Apple's track record is phenomenal, there were no real touch-screen phones, no tablets, no app stores, no online music stores of any consequence, until Apple invented them. And, of course, you can go back further to the personal computer, GUI operating systems etc. etc. Phenomenal. And then what we see is all of the "me too's" simply creating variations of Apple's products. There's little expectation on Samsung to come up with something new (and even less for Microsoft), these other companies are not expected to innovate, and yet somehow people expect Apple to keep inventing a new thingamajig that no one has thought of before. It just doesn't happen, at least not that often. For Apple, it's been 4 or 5 unique things that have truly changed the world, for most other companies it never happens, they contend themselves with a "copy or die" strategy that brings in quick dollars, until they can copy the next thing.
There is an incredible spirit of innovation at Apple, and we will see new inventions and amazing products, but to expect this on a 6 month basis is ridiculous. There's very little praise given for refining, improving, making something great even greater, but sometimes little steps are needed before giant leaps can be taken. The negativity shown toward Apple recently is certainly unwarranted, and definitely hypocritical, in the light of the low expectations afforded to other tech companies.
peter236 wrote: »
Samsung also sold a record number of phones, as did Huawei, Lenovo and ZTE etc. Apple's market share is shinking, so is the IOS ecosystem.
Don't be fooled by the many theories on why Apple shares fell from $700 to $425. It has nothing to do with Samsung eating Apple's lunch. It has nothing to do with a lack of innovation. It has nothing to do with losing Steve Jobs as their visionary.
It has everything to do with a small group of market makers who have an extremely large influence on the stock market. The decisions of these few influential financial institutions can make or break a company and it can make an individual investor rich or broke. Check out this TED talk so you understand what's really going on:
hfts wrote: »
I believe in Apple, they have came out with some of the most amazing devices.
Yes, they have stumbled a bit, Maps and some others, but I have faith and are eagerly awaiting their next amazing device. The only tech company that innovates and believes in their customers.
Lots of speculations but I know they won't disappoint.
Twitters, blogs, media pundits, analysts and evangelists. People who generate noise for a living. They have to have something to talk about. Even if it is out of their arses.
He did say "of any consequence".
Just because the parts exist, doesn't mean that putting them together in new and interesting ways isn't in the spirit of invention.
macrulez wrote: »
I'm not sure it's all that deep. Stock prices have little to do with current value, and much more to do with anticipated growth. So the question is not whether Apple is currently profitable, or even it it's likely to remain profitable going forward (it likely will).
Instead the question is simply whether Apple can continue to have the same rate of growth going forward that it's had in recent years. Yes, there will be growth, but with the smartphone market as a whole moving toward saturation (not there of course, just moving toward it), and with the competition heating up, it doesn't seem all that unreasonable that Apple's growth rates, while remaining quite positive for years to come, may not be at the same steep slope we've seen in recent years.
How would you explain Amazon? Or the Facebook IPO? Or even Facebook today for that matter.