Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 18th Mar 2013 15:51 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless Thorsten Heins, BlackBerry's CEO: "Apple did a fantastic job in bringing touch devices to market ... They did a fantastic job with the user interface, they are a design icon. There is a reason why they were so successful, and we actually have to admit this and respect that. History repeats itself again I guess ... the rate of innovation is so high in our industry that if you don't innovate at that speed you can be replaced pretty quickly. The user interface on the iPhone, with all due respect for what this invention was all about is now five years old." Ironic, perhaps, that this comes from a BlackBerry CEO, but that doesn't make him wrong - although I'm sure the usual suspects will claim that it does.
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Innovation isn't everything
by WildSubnet on Mon 18th Mar 2013 16:22 UTC
WildSubnet
Member since:
2012-01-24

The comments are only correct if something truly better comes along that radically simplifies the use of the device (like the original iPhone did). So far I haven't seen it. Sure, iOS isn't as flashy but it sure is seems to be the easiest phone to still pick up and use. I handed one to my mother recently, and have had two support calls in total. Could the interface get some tweaks? Sure it could. But overall, it is a great user friendly UI.

Reply Score: 7

RE: Innovation isn't everything
by devnet on Mon 18th Mar 2013 19:12 UTC in reply to "Innovation isn't everything"
devnet Member since:
2007-01-16

This is untrue. Because Windows Phone does this but it has failed to gain market share.

We can therefore add more to your criteria: This is only true if something better comes along that radically simplifies the use of the device AND captures the 'cool factor' that Apple has and allows it to become popular...because really that is all it is...a popularity contest.

People don't care if something is simple to use or radically more simplistic...if they did, WP8 or WebOS would rule phones right now.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by themwagency
by themwagency on Mon 18th Mar 2013 16:28 UTC
themwagency
Member since:
2013-03-06

Does BlackBerry's CEO have an ulterior motive or is this genuine feedback?

Reply Score: 6

RE: Comment by themwagency
by pandronic on Mon 18th Mar 2013 20:21 UTC in reply to "Comment by themwagency"
pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

Both.

Reply Score: 3

He's right but
by leos on Mon 18th Mar 2013 16:30 UTC
leos
Member since:
2005-09-21

Innovation for the sake of change doesn't correlate with success.

Look at the Windows Phone UI. It's definitely different. They tossed out the common conventions in iOS/Android and went a different route. So how did that work out for them? How about Blackerry's playbook? New OS, new interface, complete failure. The success of their new phones remain to be seen.

And what about the other platforms? You can make the same argument about Android. Android had a home screen with widgets and icons and an app drawer essentially from the start. Where's the innovation? A glance at the Galaxy 4 release shows they are grasping at new whiz-bangery like "air-gestures" and "smart pause" that are poorly thought out.

Why is it that we expect our phones to radically change their primary interface whereas we're happy with the WIMP paradigm living on our desktops for 20 years?

I know Thom will disregard this because he thinks I'm an apple disciple (should I mention again that I've never bought an apple device in my life?) but it's true. Blackberry needs to make a splash with a new interface because they're coming from nothing. The established players are better off with consistency than frantic UI overhauls at every release.

Edited 2013-03-18 16:31 UTC

Reply Score: 7

RE: He's right but
by Thom_Holwerda on Mon 18th Mar 2013 16:42 UTC in reply to "He's right but"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

He didn't say Apple wasn't successful. He said iOS has become stale.

To put it differently, Apple's success does not mean they are innovative; similarly, Microsoft's failure (so far) with Windows Phone does not mean Microsoft is not innovative there.

But yes, this has become a common spin in certain circles, you're right there. Back when Apple was an also-ran, we were told that numbers didn't matter. Now that Apple is highly successful, they suddenly do. It's somewhat entertaining to watch these massive 180s in pro-Apple circle (not necessarily you, by the way).

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: He's right but
by leos on Mon 18th Mar 2013 18:55 UTC in reply to "RE: He's right but"
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

He didn't say Apple wasn't successful. He said iOS has become stale.


Operating systems aren't like bread. If something is effective, then it remains effective.
One recent "innovation" is the drive to map every off-screen gesture to an action like in Windows 8, Sailfish, and BB10. We are certainly sacrificing discoverability and introducing vectors for accidental activation (especially when playing games). My wife got annoyed enough when the notification center got introduced to her iPod touch and she kept accidentally activating it when playing fruit ninja.

To put it differently, Apple's success does not mean they are innovative; similarly, Microsoft's failure (so far) with Windows Phone does not mean Microsoft is not innovative there.


Right, so the idea that "innovative" UI is even desirable is not very strong. What you want is effective UI, and clearly iOS and Android have a pretty good handle on that. A stale UI is more likely a sign that they've gotten it right.

That said I'm very interested to see what changes we'll see in iOS now that Ive is in charge there.

Edited 2013-03-18 18:56 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: He's right but
by Tony Swash on Tue 19th Mar 2013 00:17 UTC in reply to "RE: He's right but"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

He didn't say Apple wasn't successful. He said iOS has become stale.

To put it differently, Apple's success does not mean they are innovative; similarly, Microsoft's failure (so far) with Windows Phone does not mean Microsoft is not innovative there.

But yes, this has become a common spin in certain circles, you're right there. Back when Apple was an also-ran, we were told that numbers didn't matter. Now that Apple is highly successful, they suddenly do. It's somewhat entertaining to watch these massive 180s in pro-Apple circle (not necessarily you, by the way).



I think what's changed is that there is no Steve Jobs to hand hold, reassure and excite the sceptical. When Jobs was around there was a constant narrative of change and innovation at Apple which was very powerful and very persuasive. That narrative was rooted in a real process of change and innovation at Apple but the real process was, and is, very opaque and difficult for many tech observers to understand or accept because much of it runs counter to the (empty) shibboleths of tech cultural discourse (exemplified by the vacuous 'opens always beats' sort of piffle). So Jobs role as master of ceremonies and magician in chief helped calm the nerves of tech observers, they still couldn't understand how Apple had made the apparently startling and sudden transition from a side show to the biggest show in town, but the belief in the special genius of Jobs and his magic helped ease their confusion. It turns out that Jobs mattered to sceptical tech observers far more than to the fans, supporters or believers in Apple.

The reasons I say all this is that the notion that Apple is slowing it's pace of innovation, other than just being the latest tech junk journalism fad, is rooted in a misremembering of how Apple actually innovated in the past. The pattern at Apple for the last decade or more has been occasional stunning and utterly disruptive new product launches that spark a massive new line of products and new areas of large business growth followed by the slow iterative polishing of the products, the restrained diversification of models within product lines and the steady building of a deep ecosystem and service stack to wrap around the break through product lines.

The article contains a nicely done info-graphic on the Apple product innovation timeline.

http://www.applegazette.com/apple-inc/is-apple-taking-too-long-to-i...


It turns out that when you strip out some of the less significant stuff and concentrate on the big product pillars then the average time between major product innovation is three years and ten months. By that math, Apple is due to announce a fifth major pillar of its business around this October. That doesn't mean that they will but it does mean that the gap since the iPad was introduced is not particularly long by Apple standards.

The actual timeline of major product pillars is as follows:

iMac

3 years 4 months later

iPod

5 years 3 months later

iPhone

3 years

iPad

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: He's right but
by kwan_e on Tue 19th Mar 2013 01:35 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: He's right but"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

That narrative was rooted in a real process of change and innovation at Apple but the real process was, and is, very opaque and difficult for many tech observers to understand or accept because much of it runs counter to the (empty) shibboleths of tech cultural discourse (exemplified by the vacuous 'opens always beats' sort of piffle).


Oh Prophet of all things Apple, please continue to spread and interpret the narrative for us.

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: He's right but
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 02:55 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: He's right but"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Oh come on, I think he made great points. It captures exactly what Steve Jobs did for Apple and why he did it so well.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: He's right but
by kwan_e on Tue 19th Mar 2013 08:42 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: He's right but"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

I was not questioning the quality of his points, and in fact agreed with the point I quoted. What I was poking fun at is the narrative aspect of it and how narrative is more real than reality to some people.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: He's right but
by unclefester on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:35 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: He's right but"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

The only time Apple has ever suceeded is when the opposition has lost focus. As soon as other companies regain their focus Apple slowly degenerates to being a dismal failure.

Jobs was not a genius. He was a typical autistic technocrat - inflexible, unimaginative, autocratic and and obsessed with trivial details.

All Apples recent "innovations" including the iPad are nothing more than balatantly obvious iterations of the original iPhone.

Reply Score: 5

RE[4]: He's right but
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 07:01 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: He's right but"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Apple created the modern smartphone market.
Apple created the modern tablet market.

Created. Not just did what the next guy was doing. They created and defined these segments. They showed the competition how to design, market, package, and sell their products to end users.

Its telling that the whole of Android (including the shitload of Android dumb-phones people like to use to inflate marketshare) has trouble going up against a handful of iPhone models.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: He's right but
by unclefester on Tue 19th Mar 2013 08:25 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: He's right but"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

Apple created the modern smartphone market.
Apple created the modern tablet market.


Complete and utter bullshit.

Apple is just another a consumer products company - not much different to Dyson (vacuum cleaners). Dyson and Jobs both took existing products, added a bit of polish and told outrageous lies to sell millions of suckers their overpriced crap.

The iPad is just a big iPhone. The iPod touch is just an iPhone that can't make calls.

Without Steve around to spin his web of lies the public can now see how ordinary Apple products really are. That is why Apple Inc has lost 40% in value in less than a year.

*James Dyson is an even bigger bullshitter than Steve Dobs was. Dyson simply uses very familiar (to engineers) technology, puts it in a stylish package and gives it an imaginative name.

-The cyclone dust extractor was very widely used in industry for nearly 90 years before Dyson applied it to vacuum cleaners.

-The Dyson 'bladeless' fans has a conventional fan in the base.

-Dyson products consistently rate below much cheaper products for usability and reliability in independent tests.

Reply Score: 4

RE[6]: He's right but
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 13:27 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: He's right but"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29


Complete and utter bullshit.

Apple is just another a consumer products company - not much different to Dyson (vacuum cleaners). Dyson and Jobs both took existing products, added a bit of polish and told outrageous lies to sell millions of suckers their overpriced crap.


What were the lies Apple told? Just wondering what your definition of outrageous. I'm actually fairly confident that iPhones and iPads flew off of the shelves. That's either a lot of suckers, or just one individual on OSNews.

I'll take the latter given the Apple has so much clout they transcend the carriers.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: He's right but
by Tony Swash on Tue 19th Mar 2013 10:47 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: He's right but"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

The only time Apple has ever suceeded is when the opposition has lost focus. As soon as other companies regain their focus Apple slowly degenerates to being a dismal failure.


Just like the iPod and MP3 players?

Jobs was not a genius. He was a typical autistic technocrat - inflexible, unimaginative, autocratic and and obsessed with trivial details.


It turned out that those trivial details resonate deeply with the buying public whether you think they are important or not. Frankly the majority of tech products sold today, as always, are badly designed, ugly and depressingly often shoddy. It is painfully obvious to most consumers that most tech companies don't really care about their products and they certainly don't care about their customer much, as a few minutes of interaction with their customer support services would show. Is it that surprising that a company like Apple that decided to concentrate on selling a few well made and well designed products delivered with very high levels of customer support and service attracts large numbers of customer?

All Apples recent "innovations" including the iPad are nothing more than balatantly obvious iterations of the original iPhone.


As are almost all mobile devices. It was three years between the iPhone and the iPad and yet not one competitor thought of making an iPad before Apple. It's easy to see the obvious in hindsight, far harder to see it going forward.

As long as Apple's success is seen as an anomaly, and a probably short lived one at that, then the real reasons for Apple's success (which are very interesting by the way) will remain obscured and an understanding of the real dynamics of the tech markets will remain elusive,

Reply Score: 0

RE: He's right but
by Nelson on Mon 18th Mar 2013 21:02 UTC in reply to "He's right but"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Innovation for the sake of change doesn't correlate with success.


I don't think innovation is immediately rewarded with success, even if it is a tangible improvement, and I point to your following point as direct evidence. There are others.

Innovation needs to be paired with execution to be effective. A poorly delivered good idea is indistinguishable from a bad idea.


Look at the Windows Phone UI. It's definitely different. They tossed out the common conventions in iOS/Android and went a different route. So how did that work out for them? How about Blackerry's playbook? New OS, new interface, complete failure. The success of their new phones remain to be seen.


Is Windows Phone that different? Fundamentally? And is it much different from the new design direction Android is going in?

The industry trend is towards a fierce reduction in complexity and minimalism. If this trend was one that brought with it negativity, we'd see a much worse reaction to Android's recent face lift.

I'm not convinced that Windows Phones are held back by the UI, they generally review extremely well. Windows Phones, BB10, and all others that come after it are limited by a market inefficiency that affects every OS vendor who doesn't carve out an unclaimed niche.


Why is it that we expect our phones to radically change their primary interface whereas we're happy with the WIMP paradigm living on our desktops for 20 years?


I think the entire WIMP angle is just semantic garbage that muddies discussion. As soon as you mention it, you'll get about 30 pedants from OSNews who think they know what WIMP really is and it'll span off into some irrelevant pissing contest. Who cares.

Blackberry needs to make a splash with a new interface because they're coming from nothing. The established players are better off with consistency than frantic UI overhauls at every release.


I don't think BlackBerry will fare better than Windows Phone or other bottom feeding OSes. There is an inherent inefficiency in the system. Carriers are very much the gatekeepers of retail success.

BlackBerry needs to either adhere to the shape that carriers want them to contort themselves in, or find a way to break the mold.

Android got to where it is because its everything an OEM and a Carrier could dream of. A no holds barred dumping ground for their shitware. Look at Windows on the Desktop for an analogous situation.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: He's right but
by leos on Tue 19th Mar 2013 05:48 UTC in reply to "RE: He's right but"
leos Member since:
2005-09-21

All good points.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: He's right but
by pos3 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 09:44 UTC in reply to "RE: He's right but"
pos3 Member since:
2010-06-25

Nobody cares about carriers while buying mobile in India. Android is still gaining and wp8 is going nowhere.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: He's right but
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 13:31 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: He's right but"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

In India, Windows Phone had an 8% marketshare in Q3, prior to the Windows Phone 8 launch.

That's before the Lumia 520, 620, and 720 devices low end devices.

Its interesting how the dynamics of the market change once the inefficiencies are removed.

Edited 2013-03-19 13:31 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: He's right but
by pos3 on Sat 23rd Mar 2013 05:49 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: He's right but"
pos3 Member since:
2010-06-25

Your market share is based on survey?

Do you know how big Nokia was before WP. Before 2-3 Samsung/lg were considered low end unreliable like the current chinese sets. Now they are the high end mobile.
Nokia still has reputation for sturdy mobiles. But they enabled samsung/lg to grow by not adopting android. I still say Nokia Android would have ruled the Indian market.

btw Android 4 mobile are reaching $100. while 2.3 are released for even less. Nokia low end mobiles are sold at $200. They need to cut it even low to get a bigger slice unless they are not interested in marketshare.

Reply Score: 1

Not an User
by Risthel on Mon 18th Mar 2013 16:50 UTC
Risthel
Member since:
2010-12-22

Ah, ok.

And Blackberry is innovating in what? In having a Android "Compatibility Layer"(aka: Kludge) on it's insides to justify being too late for the market?

It is "almost five years" from now, that android first appeared on a phone, so, you RIM, have 6 months to stop deploying such solution.

Good luck on your "innovation" ;)

Reply Score: 3

RE: Not an User
by cdude on Mon 18th Mar 2013 18:41 UTC in reply to "Not an User"
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21

And Wine comes to Android, Android compatibility to Windows, so what? A sign both are weak or that compatibility, being able to run foreign apps is demanded by, you know, customers?
BB10 btw comes also with Qt, with HTML5 and AIR and isn't the only platform there either. Compatibility is great. So whats your motivation to complain they didn't NIH like eg Microsoft did with incompatible Metro x86/RT/WP and prevent active to be compatible?

Edited 2013-03-18 18:42 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Not an User
by Nelson on Mon 18th Mar 2013 21:06 UTC in reply to "RE: Not an User"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

And Wine comes to Android, Android compatibility to Windows, so what? A sign both are weak or that compatibility, being able to run foreign apps is demanded by, you know, customers?
BB10 btw comes also with Qt, with HTML5 and AIR and isn't the only platform there either. Compatibility is great. So whats your motivation to complain they didn't NIH like eg Microsoft did with incompatible Metro x86/RT/WP and prevent active to be compatible?


HTML5 as an app platform is floundering. It is going nowhere. No one is adopting it. The few that have are dumping it. Facebook has called it its biggest strategic mistake.

Its simple for Facebook to make such a mistake, even Microsoft, but when you're betting the entire company of a small start up, which has likely direct investment from employees *and* is their livelihood, then such discussion is dangerous.

Really? AIR? Please. No. Just stop. I'm sure you'd list every acronym BB put on their developer portal if it let you make a longer bullet list. Are you aware that the technologies you're spouting off about (save for Qt) are complete and utter garbage?

The Android compatibility layer is so terrible that I've heard some wish it was never even there.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Not an User
by cdude on Mon 18th Mar 2013 22:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Not an User"
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21

We have at least ChromeOS and FirefoxOS which are HTML5 only. We have Tizen and WP which put focus on HTML5 integration to make them first-level citizen. Android with Google and iOS with Apple are the two major WebKit contributors. So, whatever your personal stand is (and I agree there about the suck-level compared to better alternates like Qt) being compatible and supporting HTML5 additionally can't harm.

AIR, well. AIR is AIR. As long as I not have to use it I not have a problem with it. Its available for eg Android and now also for Blackberry too. I am sure some like it and I like to not being forced to use it.

Qt is just very good. I applaud them for adding Qt as first-level option like some AIR or HTML5 devs may applaud them for adding AIR/HTML5 support. Or even for keeping Java ME in and on or supporting Android API's and apps.

Point is: Options. Blackberry didn't only add one exclusive thing, like Microsoft did (as horrible implementation incompatible to there other offerings), but support a wide range of existing technologies. That's choice. Important isn't that you may hate one of the choices but that at least one of them is a good choice for you.

Edited 2013-03-18 23:09 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Not an User
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 02:48 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Not an User"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

We have at least ChromeOS and FirefoxOS which are HTML5 only.


Yes, the OSes, but I'm speaking about development shops that actually have embraced HTML5 as *their* app platform. It seems the few shops stupid enough to make that bet are paying for it in lost produtivity.


We have Tizen and WP which put focus on HTML5 integration to make them first-level citizen.


Tizen as far as I'm concerned doesn't even exist. I have no faith in its ability to come to market. Its a big failurecake that will explode in Samsung's face if they're stupid enough to try and ditch Google.

Windows Phone has a Visual Studio template that sets up Phonegap for you. That's about the extent of HTML5 support _as an app platform_ on Windows Phone.

HTML5 support in the browser is irrelevant.


Android with Google and iOS with Apple are the two major WebKit contributors. So, whatever your personal stand is (and I agree there about the suck-level compared to better alternates like Qt) being compatible and supporting HTML5 additionally can't harm.


Actually, it can harm. It harms performance, productivity, and the bottom line of many start ups that are conned, yes, conned into using such a primitive technology.

This is why this sort of fudging of the facts is dangerous. It leads developers off of a cliff.


AIR, well. AIR is AIR. As long as I not have to use it I not have a problem with it. Its available for eg Android and now also for Blackberry too. I am sure some like it and I like to not being forced to use it.


Too much choice is a bad thing for developers -- especially when the experience between the disjointed platforms isnt' the same.

At least with the Windows Runtime an HTML5 app and a XAML app behave exactly the same way, access the same APIs, use the same underlying graphics stack, and support the same paradigms.

On BlackBerry 10 its a mishmash of bad ideas. AIR? HTML5? Android? Java ME? What else? This is ridiculous.


Qt is just very good. I applaud them for adding Qt as first-level option like some AIR or HTML5 devs may applaud them for adding AIR/HTML5 support. Or even for keeping Java ME in and on or supporting Android API's and apps.


Qt is good enough. They need to drop everything else. BlackBerry isn't Apple, or Microsoft, or Google. They're cash and time strapped and quite frankly don't have time to screw around trying to be something to everybody.

They have a potentially compelling story with Qt and QML and they're wasting it on a stupid, slow Android compatibility layer. Its making developers not take them serious. The app store on BB10 has already lost its prestige. Its a cess pool of stolen IP recompiled and resubmitted by some guy in China.


Point is: Options. Blackberry didn't only add one exclusive thing, like Microsoft did (as horrible implementation incompatible to there other offerings), but support a wide range of existing technologies. That's choice. Important isn't that you may hate one of the choices but that at least one of them is a good choice for you.


Hilariously, everyone except Blackberry has a more coherent cross device story.

Apple has this down to perfection. iOS as a platform with Objective-C is as simple as it gets for writing both phone and tablet apps.

Google also with their fragment API has made their own platform very attractive for phone and tablet apps.

Microsoft, yes, Microsoft, the company that you say has a "horrible implementation" actually offers the most consistent and diverse amount of choice.

You can use ISO C++ with WRL, C++/CX, C# (or any other .NET language), JS/HTML5 or even just COM and DirectX.

Microsoft also has more tablet optimized apps than Android, despite these supposed "horrible" tools.

Also if you look on Windows Phone, a lot of the apps available there are actually on Windows 8, especially games.

So... yeah. No you're making stuff up.

Reply Score: 3

Redefinition was Apple's strength
by tomz on Mon 18th Mar 2013 17:08 UTC
tomz
Member since:
2010-05-06

There were phones, then Apple created the iPhone - and then added Apps. There were tablets, WinXP and Nokia N8x0. But Apple redefined it with the iPad. Apple TV was an attempt that fizzled, but it showed they were pushing into any area they could.

Google Glass is that kind of device. Apple should have come up with it.

I think Apple was forced to respond with the iPad Mini. I think they need to do something similar with the phones. The one-ultimate size/shape/feature combination doesn't work when it is surrounded by phablets, stylus phones, keyboard phones, bigger screens, smaller phones. They have the sweet spot, but that sweet spot is not growing as fast as the smartphone universe.

The rest is their lockdown. They are trying to force things into their ecosystem, both hardware and software (the new connector? Locked bluetooth?). When you have what was the Microsoft desktop monopoly, you can dictate. That won't work here. If you need to share files and can't do it with iCloud (or they make it painful to use other services, emailing yourself a file is NOT user friendly), people will go elsewhere, and the alternatives are no longer clunky.

They might end up being Porsche, but even Porsche made the Cayenne. Sometimes you need "a truck".

Apple might create a new category device that blows everyone away. I hope so. But if they don't they might meet Microsoft's ossification doom. Microsoft is still a big and profitable company, but it is slowly fading out. Remember they supplanted IBM.

Incremental improvements don't work for long, even large increments.

The new categories - the successful ones - give Apple about 2 years head start before the more agile OODA loop of the competitors catch up to the point that Apple's leap-frogging fails to clearly jump ahead. So they need to come up with a new category (which they can leverage their ecosystem both ways) about every two years.

Note it can be "virtual" - something like MusicMatch, but it has to be totally unique. iBooks didn't dent Amazon's Kindle (or even B&N's Nook). Apple's Map application (iOS only?!) is not a good sign. Note I would love a Geoinformation travel app - No map or app (nonphysical) tells me if a road is 4 lane divided or 2 lane with just a yellow line. None tell me the speed limits or average speed. For my drives - especially on my motorcycle - this would be great. There are other things that would make me want to switch. There are probably some for others. Will Apple find and implement them? Whatever it is, it will have to be able to have the wildly large margins Apple has had on hardware and software.

The interesting thing will be if they end up with something like iTunes for Android (Google has this via export, but I mean the full integration). This would be a declaration of surrender. But equally if they start getting defections - people switching ecosystems away, that will be the death knell, at least for their large margins.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Mon 18th Mar 2013 21:55 UTC
shmerl
Member since:
2010-06-08

Apple clearly stopped innovating in their iPhone, for whatever reason. It reminds the situation with MS and their total slowdown with IE. It took strong rivals to appear to make them move again. Apple's case is a bit weird though, since rivals are all around and still instead of innovating Apple just snarls and shows patents teeth.

Edited 2013-03-18 21:56 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by shmerl
by Nelson on Mon 18th Mar 2013 22:19 UTC in reply to "Comment by shmerl"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Apple has defined two market segments and completely dominated both. It has $100 billion dollars in the bank. It is the most (or a very close second depending on market fluctuations) valuable company on the planet. Period.

I don't think they're suing Samsung out of desperation, in fact, its been shown that Samsung was given an opportunity to license the relevant patents -- a decidedly competitive move.

They're suing Samsung because they genuinely feel their IP has been violated.

I think the whole "Apple is only using patents because they can't innovate" is such a childish argument that it makes it hard to take people who make such claims seriously.

Apple does some nefarious things, but other companies do much worse, including Google trying to get exclusion orders on patents that are standard essential. That's anti competitive.

I don't mean anti competitive in shmerl's opinion, I mean in the opinion of the DOJ and various other governmental agencies around the world.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by shmerl
by cdude on Mon 18th Mar 2013 23:29 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by shmerl"
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21

> Period

That was Apple with Jobs. Past. That's the central point. Can they keep on to invent, to build new products opposed to products they invented and build before with Jobs?

Having lots of money on bank may keep you running for a while but it doesn't automatically give you a place among the top players in sold products in the future. Just see what happened with IBM or what happens now with Microsoft and both of them where strong monopolists unlike Apple. Things can change and they can change fast.

> "Apple is only using patents because they can't innovate"

But that's the central question. Can they successful innovate without Jobs? We only see patent-wars innovations, no new product innovations for a longer time now while competition is accelerating and improving there products.

Customers don't buy your law-suites, they buy your products. Apple seems to beet on the wrong thing.

Edited 2013-03-18 23:32 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by shmerl
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 02:53 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by shmerl"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29


That was Apple with Jobs. Past. That's the central point. Can they keep on to invent, to build new products opposed to products they invented and build before with Jobs?


I'm sure you're aware that a majority (read: almost all) of the pending and current litigation was initiated under Steve Jobs, right?

Steve Jobs is Mr. Thermonuclear, not Mr. Cook.


Having lots of money on bank may keep you running for a while but it doesn't automatically give you a place among the top players in sold products in the future. Just see what happened with IBM or what happens now with Microsoft and both of them where strong monopolists unlike Apple. Things can change and they can change fast.


There's no sign of Apple slowing down, at their current trajectory they can continue to essentially print money like this for another decade or two.

Who cares though? I only mentioned their cash on hand to illustrate that Apple isn't strapped for money not now or in the medium term. They have a lot of cash.


But that's the central question. Can they successful innovate without Jobs? We only see patent-wars innovations, no new product innovations for a longer time now while competition is accelerating and improving there products.


I do not think that anyone has announced anything innovative on the scale of Apple with the iPhone or with the iPad. Nobody. Not Google, not Microsoft, not anyone. (Cue some idiot replying about a Tablet from 2001, or some obscure phone that Samsung made, who the hell cares)

Maybe Google can execute their Glasses thing really well, and that certainly is a game changing, Appleesque product, but it remains to be seen how they maneuver it to market.


Customers don't buy your law-suites, they buy your products. Apple seems to beet on the wrong thing.


Yes, Apple has ceased its work on everything announced and unannounced and has become a patent troll. Is this really how your mind works?

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Tue 19th Mar 2013 05:34 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

They aren't moving forward - i.e. they are stagnating. That was the point. In the industry where completion is really strong it's very strange and either Apple are too arrogant and think that they'll forever have a strong market share, or they simply don't care about long term developments (like some money hungry managers do, attempting to rip things off in short term, disregarding any long term benefits for the company).

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by shmerl
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:06 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by shmerl"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Who else is really innovating in a groundbreaking manner?
Certainly not Samsung. Wasting GPU power by shoving 440 pixels into a display the size of a phone isn't innovation. Shoving eight power hungry cores into an OS that shouldn't need it isn't innovation.

To Samsung's credit, the only thing I've seen them do that should made others envious is how they figured out the secret sauce to stylus based phones right under from everyone else's noses. I sincerely feel Samsung accidentally became successful with the Galaxy Note.

Everyone talks about how fast and innovative this sector is, I agree about fast, but the innovative part is still up in the air for me when it comes to OS vendors.

Google Now and Siri are interesting in that they approach the same problem with a different twist, but that's about _all_ that comes to mind when I think innovation that has happened.

There really has been no industry shaking, segment defining events since the iPad. I hate Apple, but I think its foolish to disregard all that they do.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:22 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

Hardware innovation is indeed slow across all players. But software innovation isn't. That's what I mostly was talking about.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:49 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

I wouldn't go that far, but if you have concrete examples I'd love to hear them. I think I pointed out a lot of them in the form of Samsung's TouchWiz making stylus on Android palatable and in Siri/Google Now style personal assistants.

Surely if the pace of innovation is so rapid that Apple is being left in the dust, there must be a huge list of software innovations that undoubtedly put iOS at a disadvantage now or in the foreseeable future.

I don't know what's worse, you pushing this notion forward or the even scarier aspect that you might actually start to believe yourself.

Apple created, coined, and proved the current mobile OS ecosystem model. The 70/30 revenue model, the curated app store, the touch interaction models, hell, half of Samsung's form factors since like 2010, has all been Apple.

For every Apple service, you'll find an opposite but terrible S-Something implementation by Samsung.

Samsung is like the modern day megabloks compared to Apple's legos. Sorta kinda like the real thing, but not really, and people notice.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by shmerl
by MOS6510 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:23 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by shmerl"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I think Samsung's innovation is that they are the first company to successfully emulate Apple. In the near future we will probably see more actions from Samsung to become Asian's version of Apple.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Comment by shmerl
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:51 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by shmerl"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Samsung is like the consumer electronic version of Walmart. Its this really insidious and sprawling vertically aligned apparatus that has incredible cost structure because of it.

Samsung will go down in history as the luckiest company in modern history. Its amazing how they seemingly stumbled into success because HTC threw away the keys to the kingdom on Android. Remember DROID? Yeah, me either.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Tue 19th Mar 2013 05:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by shmerl"
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

They're suing Samsung because they genuinely feel their IP has been violated.


I have strong doubts about any "genuine feelings" when it comes to Apple.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by shmerl
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:08 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by shmerl"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Ah, the classic OSNews-ian reply-to-two-words-of-an-entire-comment trick. Good to know you still got it.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by shmerl
by MOS6510 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:19 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by shmerl"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Well, he did motivate why he has these strong doubts.

Oh wait, he didn't.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by shmerl
by gan17 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:37 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by shmerl"
gan17 Member since:
2008-06-03

I have strong doubts about any "genuine feelings" when it comes to Apple.


Why only Apple? Samsung "genuinely feel" that they don't copy anyone. Do you believe them?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by shmerl
by unclefester on Tue 19th Mar 2013 08:37 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by shmerl"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

Apple has defined two market segments and completely dominated both. It has $100 billion dollars in the bank. It is the most (or a very close second depending on market fluctuations) valuable company on the planet. Period.


Apple is not even in the Top 20 companies in the world. Virtually every state owned oil company is larger. Saudi Aramco is worth an estimated $7 trillion. Saudi Aramco's annual profits are almost as much as the net worth of Apple.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by shmerl
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 13:38 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by shmerl"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

That's unfair. State run companies can hardly be considered companies at all. In addition, that $7 trillion figure is dubious and has been disputed. The low figure is less than a trillion.

I just don't think the comparison is fair.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by v_bobok
by v_bobok on Mon 18th Mar 2013 22:38 UTC
v_bobok
Member since:
2008-08-01

I hope they won't fail with QNX, it was (is) a mighty fine RTOS. Even the desktop "developer station" was glorious.

Reply Score: 3

I agree but....
by vijayd81 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 01:39 UTC
vijayd81
Member since:
2008-07-18

I agree with him but the sad part is that its been 5 years and Blackberry is still nowhere near them.

Reply Score: 1

I like Thorsten
by thesunnyk on Tue 19th Mar 2013 01:42 UTC
thesunnyk
Member since:
2010-05-21

This might be contrary to popular opinion, but I really appreciate what Thorsten has done with RIM, now Blackberry.

Usually about this time, most executives have their eyes squarely on the exit door. They'll still be saying the usual thing of "stay the course" etc. but you can tell they're looking for that golden parachute. In these times a company will usually flop around. Engineers have no idea what they're working on, and priorities change daily. This is all so that execs can maneuver themselves into a new job or a clean exit.

Not to give Engineers a free ride here. Many will start working on completely useless things to pad their resumes instead of getting the company back on track, but the writing is on the wall with the behaviour of the "leadership".

RIM did the exact opposite. The company changed its name to "Blackberry" -- its sinking ship, its failing product. Thorsten has basically committed the future of the company to the product all the engineers are working on. He's righting the ship, pointing the way, and setting sail. Whether or not you think they're going to succeed, their destiny is in their own hands, and everyone in the company is heading in the same direction.

For all the things that have been said about others (who've obviously succeeded -- the Steve Jobs today or the Bill Gates when he was succeeding), I see Thorsten's act as one of true leadership. I wish them all the best.

Reply Score: 4

Comment by Flatland_Spider
by Flatland_Spider on Tue 19th Mar 2013 03:02 UTC
Flatland_Spider
Member since:
2006-09-01

Stale UIs are part of the Apple's vaunted usability. Nothing changes, so people don't have to relearn anything.

It's 2013 and OS X still has design elements from the 1980, like the menu bar.

I think they should evolve their UI a little bit more, but I understand why they don't.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Flatland_Spider
by Johann Chua on Tue 19th Mar 2013 04:39 UTC in reply to "Comment by Flatland_Spider"
Johann Chua Member since:
2005-07-22

I'd like OS X better if the GUI were more like Classic Mac OS. UNIX guts with the Mac OS GUI, kinda like A/UX.

Oh well, I'm getting a Mac SE/30 (preferably with Ethernet) so I can use System 6 again.

Reply Score: 4

Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:17 UTC
MOS6510
Member since:
2011-05-12

By keeping iOS "boring" Apple has achieved that virtually anybody can easily learn how to use an iPhone and iPad.

The average customer isn't tech savvy. Al lost of them are just happy the can operate their device. Changing the UI just because then it's different upsets these people.

When you look at usage statistics iOS users, despite being outnumbered by Android powered devices, are the biggest slice of the pie. Why? My guess it because they all know how to use their device. After upgrading the OS or buying a new device they still know how to use it. The Android UI keeps changing, between versions, vendors, devices. Certainly less boring, but most people don't even bother figuring out what features it offers.

Besides, most people use iOS as app launcher and nothing more. It's the apps that make a device useful.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by MOS6510
by Nelson on Tue 19th Mar 2013 06:56 UTC in reply to "Comment by MOS6510"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

I think this is a point that deserves more attention. Apple is familiar because at a point, iPhones were nearly ubiquitous when it came to smartphones.

Remember when BlackBerry = Smartphone? iPhone had that kind of mindshare (and to an extent still does in the US).

What that buys you is an extreme amount of familiarity. People know how to use an iPhone because they've seen one used by others, in pop culture, or in one of Apple's marketing pushes.

This is also why Samsung felt the need to copy iOS, it was familiar. They'd have to sink a ton of money to train consumers otherwise (as Microsoft is learning, while WP isn't hard to pick up, it does make for a daunting first impression).

I believe this is also why some people are so incensed that Apple is asserting its IP around look and feel, and stuff like pinch to zoom and slide to unlock (loose examples). Why? These UI conventions have become so common ground that they seem obvious. Its hard to imagine how we interacted with a touch screen prior to them.

That's the true value of Apple's design. In hindsight everything they've done seems obvious -- but for those of us who can get beyond ourselves long enough to remember -- it wasn't always like that.

People at first called the iPhone unintuitive and hard to grasp. Now people claim that iOS contains UI elements and interaction paradigms so obvious that they cannot be protected legally.

We've come full circle.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by MOS6510
by unclefester on Tue 19th Mar 2013 09:01 UTC in reply to "Comment by MOS6510"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

I was given a new iPad Mini for my birthday last week. I had to hide the disappointment on my face because I hate the iPad with a vengeance - it is a completely useless device for anything except web browsing or viewing media. It really annoys me that my family were suckered into paying well over AUD500 for something not worth AU200.

*I refused to even open the box because I plan to immediately sell it on Ebay.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 09:03 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

So that person may like you a lot as it's an expensive gift or hate you a lot, because (s)he should know your dislike for anything Apple related.

iPad Mini's are very popular, so you should have no problem selling it.

But you better be quick about it. The first next generation iPad Mini rumors have been spotted. Once they take a more solid shape the price of your iPad Mini goes down.

Edit: HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

Edited 2013-03-19 09:04 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510
by unclefester on Wed 20th Mar 2013 06:23 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

So that person may like you a lot as it's an expensive gift or hate you a lot, because (s)he should know your dislike for anything Apple related.


It was a mistake. My sister emailed me me a few weeks ago to ask what sort of tablet I'd like. I said I didn't want one. She obviously got confused somewhere along the line.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Wed 20th Mar 2013 06:28 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Yes, it is easy to get confused about.

But she can give me an iPad Mini and I'll even keep it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510
by Johann Chua on Tue 19th Mar 2013 09:24 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by MOS6510"
Johann Chua Member since:
2005-07-22

My alma mater, Xavier School, now requires students to have an iPad. Wonder how they lock down the 'Pads to stop students from playing games during school hours.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 09:28 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I guess using the parental controls.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by MOS6510
by Johann Chua on Tue 19th Mar 2013 12:05 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by MOS6510"
Johann Chua Member since:
2005-07-22

Never used an iPad, so I didn't know about that.

Wonder if they just use off the shelf apps or their own custom ones.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Tue 19th Mar 2013 12:12 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

There are a lot of educational applications out there, so I assume they'd go for those.

Yesterday I heard my son MUST have a laptop during his last year in primary school. Either you buy one or you can get one in a school deal and pay it off over a period.

I think this goes a little far. For one not all laptops, if parents can afford one, will survive until the end of the year. They will break, get stolen or become disabled by pupils/teachers/malware.

Maybe I should give him my old MacBook. It will probably not run the software they intend to distribute and then I can pretend to be upset I bought this expensive laptop and they can't even get it to work.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Comment by MOS6510
by unclefester on Wed 20th Mar 2013 06:27 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by MOS6510"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13


Yesterday I heard my son MUST have a laptop during his last year in primary school. Either you buy one or you can get one in a school deal and pay it off over a period.


This is extremely common in Australia. The school often demands that a specific model of laptop is to be used. The parents are expected to lease the laptop along with a support contract and preloaded software.

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: Comment by MOS6510
by MOS6510 on Wed 20th Mar 2013 06:30 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Comment by MOS6510"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I'm sure there are benefits, but it sounds expensive and laptops are fragile. Even more in the hands of young and wild kids.

I was taught to read 'n' write and some maths without any computer aid.

Reply Score: 2