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So Apple seem to be copping a lot of flack for the latest iPhone. ‘Incremental, boring, unimaginative…’ are a few of many less than flattering words I’ve seen to describe the latest Apple launch.

Given the nature of this blog, you’d imagine me to be less than impressed also and you wouldn’t be wrong, but I can’t help but feel a tad bit sorry for Apple. Given that people have come to expect a reinvention of the wheel every 6 or 12 months, when an incremental product is released, the disappointment felt by the watching world is magnified to a ridiculous level. The iPhone 5 will be better than previous models but people expect more of Apple, they expect it to change the world.

The recent Samsung battle has proved to be damaging to Apple. Portrayed as bullies for protecting what they believe to be their intellectual property and seen as a desperate attempt to damage major competitors, maybe a bit of stability is what Apple needs. And who can blame them?

Given the resources available to Apple and the almost risk free release of the iPhone 5 (we all know everyone will buy one), we expect more. But when all is said and done, it’s just a phone.

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2 thoughts on “Poor old Apple

  1. I think a lot of the ‘disappointment’ about the iPhone 5 comes from a misunderstanding of innovation, at least innovation as Apple does it. Their innovations are not generally in the form of adding new bells and whistles to existing product categories. Apple’s innovations create whole new categories. Looking back:
    Apple ][: First widely usable, practical home computer (and one of the first you didn’t have to solder together yourself)
    Macintosh: First mass-market computer to use a GUI and show documents on-screen in WYSIWYG
    iMac: First home computer designed for the WWW
    PowerBook: The first real desktop-replacement laptop
    iPod: new way of storing, carrying and listening (not to mention shopping for and buying) music
    iPhone: Made smart phones a smart investment
    MacBook Air: The first ‘ultrabook’
    iPad: First practical tablet, largely made possible by iOS and the existing iPhone app ecosystem

    In many of these categories, there were half-baked examples that preceeded the Apple devices, but they tended to be very expensive and usually didn’t work very well. And not every Apple innovation has been a resounding success (e.g. Lisa, Newton). But again and again the pattern is the same: Identify a need or desire, come up with a polished, thoroughly reaearched and well-thought solution, make a gazillion dollars while watching your competitors scramble (Windows 3.1, Zune, early Android) and cherry pick the best that they come up with to incorporate into ‘boring’ (as a Gizmodo article put it earlier today) updates, rinse, repeat. Complacent? No. More like Unwilling to re-invent the wheel when round still seems to work just fine.

    • Fair comment and I agree with your assessment of Apple methodology!
      And after all, companies as successful as Apple are must be doing something correct and I believe that that is quality design. To be so far ahead in the fastest moving market in the world is a testament to their ability to create desire!

      I suppose everyone gets caught up in the hype, I just hope Apple don’t!

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