Thursday, July 25, 2013

Is Apple's rocket ride over?

It's been a while since I picked up a pen and wrote something for a newspaper or publisher, and I admit, somewhat sheepishly, that I had forgotten how much I enjoyed the process.

Thankfully, I'm back in the writing game. Yesterday was deadline day for my first-in-a-while assignment for the Toronto Star, and the resulting article, Apple's rocket ride drawing to a close, was published this morning.

I stared at the article this morning in our darkened, quiet kitchen. While my tea steeped, I pulled out the iPad (ironic, I know), loaded it up and just let it sit there for a while, the words I had written barely a day earlier now polished and available for anyone out there. I've published hundreds of articles over my career, but this one, my first industry-focused, analytical, op-ed piece in a while, felt especially good. They weren't just words on a page, and I drank them in for a bit before the rest of the day beckoned.

The assignment pipeline is already filling, and I'll have more stuff to share in the days and weeks to come. But for now I wanted to share this one, the first of many, because I'm so glad I'm getting back into what I love to do most. I won't forget the joy of this anytime soon.


Unknown said...

A great read Carmi (and welcome back!)

But I will take issue with what seems to be a trend when it comes to Apple commentary: the perceived slow-down of innovation and a reliance on incremental improvement.

When you look at the history of Apple's key product intros (iPod, iPhone, iPad) the space between them has been as little as 3 years and as large as 5.

It seems unfair to view the current period of post-iPad and pre-whatever-comes-next as a lull in innovation or an inability to reinvent the market as they've done in the past.

Instead, I see it as the natural result of a company steadfastly refusing to release a product until it meets all of their criteria, specifically: great user experience, profitable and genuinely useful.

It's really hard to do this. Staggeringly hard in fact. We only need look at Google to see how hard it is. Their new Nexus 7 is a great 7" tablet, but every aspect of it is merely incremental. Nothing revolutionary. Meanwhile, Google Glass, while revolutionary, is poorly conceived in its current iteration: It will likely go down as history's creepiest tech product.

I think Apple feels no pressure whatsoever to launch a new product before it's ready to do so. Tons of cash, a brand that has no equal, a highly loyal customer base and a nearly rabid dev community.

I'll revise my thinking on this when I see evidence that one of Apple's competitors is genuinely out-innovating them rather than successfully selling me-too products.

Dan Brown said...

IT's a journalist thing. We have different articles that mean different things to each of us. This one represents a new beginning for you, and that's why you are staring at it in the early morning. It's proof of your rebirth.

David Edward said...

i came, i read, i clicked the ad.... Have a good shabbat

Pat Tillett said...

Hi Carmi!
Thanks for posting the link. That was a great article. I left a comment there for you.

You know what I want out of Apple, Microsoft, or ANYBODY else in the business? I want a heads up type computer display that will work with normal looking glasses.