Where Others Go Wrong

By David Morgenstern  |  Posted 2007-01-09 Print this article Print

"> Most other device makers strip out such innovations in computing devices for reasons of cost. Or they seek some small inexpensive industrial design that really doesnt make a big difference.

Instead, Apple packs its products with these details and uses them as its differentiator in the market. But these capabilities always are functional, not just some clever tweak, and they are integrated into the user experience.
Of course, attention to small interface gestures were evident in the software too. In an e-mail message, a phone number is parsed and automatically gains a link style. If you click on it, the phone dials the number. You dont have to add it to your address book or anything.
They must be crying in Nokia-ville and other telephony towns today. Apples team in Cupertino has stopped the market with this product. Is a "perfect storm" of Mac upgrade sales on the horizon? Click here to read more.
  • Humor or truth? When Jobs introduced the iPhone, he called it the "reinvention of the phone." Everyone laughed when he then showed a photo of an iPod with a rotary dial on it. It was a very funny image but perhaps the humor was lost on many of the younger members of the audience who have grown up on dial pad? Meanwhile, the Macintosh was mostly ignored in Apples announcements today, if we dont count the companys name change from Apple Computer to just plain Apple Inc. Still, Jobs couldnt pass up the recently revealed quote in court documents by Jim Allchin, the soon-departing co-president of Microsofts Platform Products & Services division: "I would buy a Mac today if I was not working at Microsoft." According to Jobs, more than 50 percent of purchases in all channels are from "switchers," users who are moving off of the Windows platform. Click here to read about the debate between Apples OS X and Windows Vista proponents over startup sounds.
  • Stick to the plan and execute it. In 2001 or 2002, Steve Jobs outlined a strategy that put the Mac as a "digital hub" for the creation and serving of content to peripherals. The iPhone and the AppleTV, which was also introduced today, continue to hold to that vision. Instead of downloading content over the bandwidth-constrained cellular network, users push content into the iPhone from their computers with a fast USB 2.0 connection. Yes, this is all an essential part of Apples DRM scheme, but it also ensures a robust user experience. And it makes sure that users charge the phones battery. Finally, Apple appears to be giving an opening for Mac software developers and Internet services vendors in the iPhone. On the developer front, theres the user of Dashboard widgets, which are popular Mac applets used for a wide range of productivity functions and viewing bits of Internet content. I noticed that Apple didnt push people to its own .Mac services with the iPhone (maybe a good thing since .Macs performance and reliability has come under criticism in Mac circles lately). Instead, the company partnered with Google and Yahoo for mail, search and mapping services. Would Microsoft have done the same? Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news in desktop and notebook computing.

    David Morgenstern is Executive Editor/Special Projects of eWEEK. Previously, he served as the news editor of Ziff Davis Internet and editor for Ziff Davis' Storage Supersite.

    In 'the days,' he was an award-winning editor with the heralded MacWEEK newsweekly as well as eMediaweekly, a trade publication for managers of professional digital content creation.

    David has also worked on the vendor side of the industry, including companies offering professional displays and color-calibration technology, and Internet video.

    He can be reached here.


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