Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Slow Company

The upcoming issue of Fast Company has a cover article that explores the exposure and possible downside of Apple's current position in the marketplace.

The writer is critical of Apple's ability to stay on top because, "In an age of convergence and simplification, customers are ever more insistent that computers, phones, TV, and music systems work together."

No, GEEKS are insistent that their products exhibit this type of behavior. The mass market is flocking to Apple because they're products WORK.

He continues, "Winning outright is a very tall order, of course. It means coming up with a self-contained system so beautifully functional that a critical mass of consumers are willing to enter that world and never leave."

Uh, dude - isn't that what Apple's done with the iPod?? Someone needs to hit this guy with a clue-by-four. And hard!

Not yet done, " But when you get down to it, the Apple phenomenon is as much about fashion as it is about technology. You might say that Steve Jobs is the Marc Jacobs of computers (minus the heroin), betting the house his products will be, season after season, cooler than anyone else’s. Yet fashion is, by definition, fickle. Lose the buzz, and you’ve got trouble. And for the first time in years, there are signs that Apple is not infallible and that Jobs’s reservoir of goodwill with his followers is not bottomless."

Apple's success is based on products that WORK, that also happen to look good. Other companies can make good looking products (ie. a nice looking Windows machine) but in the end, its still FLAWED and is doomed to exist along with crappier looking, but functionally equal products.

The "buzz" with Apple is form combined with function. That's the secret sauce. No real secret there mind you.

I looked and I don't see where Apple claimed to be infallible. If anything, they're the master of learning from their mistakes almost on a small business level, but with the ability to execute globally as the multi-billion dollar company that they are.

I know its cool to be a renegade, and in this case, to bash Apple. But the intellect here is about on par with a headline about Peary's conquest of the North Pole by saying, "Peary has no place else to go but south!"

Yeah, bloody brilliant insight.

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