Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 23rd Mar 2012 15:09 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless I'm currently reading Jerry Kaplan's excellent book "Startup: a Silicon Valley adventure". In this book, Kaplan, founder and CEO of GO Corp., details the founding, financing and eventual demise of his highly innovative company, including the development and workings of their product. What's so surprising about this book is just how timeless it really is - the names and products may have changed, but the business practices and company attitudes surely haven't.
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Execution. That's the key to Apple success. Not innovation - but execution. Apple takes existing ideas (from other companies or academia) and turns them into products people want. An absolutely amazing skill - but as a geek with a deeply scientific education, it's just not as impressive to me as the people in the trenches - like Kaplan or the thousands of academic researchers - actually coming up with these ideas.

I think that 'innovations' like the iPod, and iPhone, and the iPad are more then just a questions of execution. More like a confluence of 'innovations' (created or otherwise derived from earlier work) that are combined to create innovative products. These may exist in some for without Apple but that does not mean they would be as defining as what Apple does.

Moreover, execution in hardware is really not that huge a deal. Obviously,
Samsung can execute in the manufacturing arena as well if not better than Apple. They just have not assembled products that people want as much as Apple products.

I also think Apple is getting the ecosystem for their products way better then anyone else. In the tablet space the only true competitor to Apple is not an HP or a Samsung but rather Amazon because they've got an ecosystem for their offerings.

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