If you think I’ve been overdoing the Apple issue recently, have a read of this post from Silicon Valley darling, VentureBeat.
You can more or less feel the horror of the former Apple koolade drinker rise and begin to bubble over with total indignation.
Make no mistake: The ruling tech elite (who don’t think of themselves as such) are now no longer aligned with Apple. I’m making a sweeping statement, I know, but I think we are way beyond the turning point now. One or two stories of disbelief are fine but I’m seeing far too many to document now, from serious, serious publications.
This is a catastrophic problem for the company but it will be a little while before the ramifications properly present themselves.
Apple has always behaved in a rather direct manner. Hitherto I think it is fair to say that there has always been a justification that the fans could at least swallow, even if they didn’t quite agree. Because it was Apple. And Apple didn’t have anywhere near a dominant position. Apple was a niche player. For the longest time it was comical watching companies try and compete with Apple in the mobile world.
We are now in a deliciously exciting phase of the evolution of the mobile world. We have a super dominant Apple under extreme pressure to deliver. We have the tech press beginning to look beyond their previously rose tinted Apple-centric world. We have millions of people coming into the Apple (mobile) ecosystem and absolutely LOVING it. And we have the rest of the mobile industry returning from licking its wounds, having learnt some valuable and incredibly costly lessons from the new reality as presented by Apple in recent years.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that IBM, HP, Oracle, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, LG, Samsung, Sony, Nokia, RIM, were all totally irrelevant. Indeed walking around parts of Silicon Valley over the last few years you’d be forgiven for assuming that the world belongs to Apple. Some commentators and analysts have actually I told me that some of the companies above should just give up. They weren’t joking either.
Maps demonstrated fallibility. Arguably antennagate did too but that was a different time, a different world. Steve Jobs standing on stage telling you that your BlackBerry had the same problem and that you were getting a free bumper … That fixed it. The turd that is iOS 6 Maps cannot be easily polished or explained away. This, I think, is when many people were forced out their “I’m fine” bubble. It has come as a real shock to a lot of people.
Have a read of the VentureBeat post. Study the language. Witness the utter dismay and disbelief.
The tech press is not the ultimate controlling force that its often tempting to believe it is. Consumers will make their choices — and millions have already put their cash down for a new iPhone 5. Millions more will do so over the next quarter.
The shine is fading though. It’s certainly possible this will be a temporary blip. But I feel it is greater than that. I think we are due ‘a correction’. I am not going weak at the knees at the imminent arrival of a 7″ iPad (a form factor that Jobs previously and famously dismissed). I suspect you aren’t feeling it either, are you? Oh it will be successful. Of course it will. But the magic has departed.
And this is brilliant. We need the competition. We need the hunger for success back amongst the wider industry. For too long much of the market has been sitting at the back cowering at Apple’s unbeatable form.
The Emperor, as the phrase goes, has no clothes. There are a lot of executives in charge of a lot of capital in this industry that have previously been staring at a naked Apple and seeing nothing but sumptuous layers of finery. I don’t mean to detract from Apple’s unquestionably brilliant achievements. I’m just looking at the wider marketplace. We need new blood, new investment, new competition and if key players begin to believe that Apple is fallible then I think things could get very stimulating rather quickly.
Bring it on!
(And while I’m here, let me highlight one brilliant statements made by one of the readers of the MIR Insider TinyLetter a week or so ago: iOS is the new Symbian. Ooof!)
Written on an iPad 3