Products Have To Grow Up

As big as Apple is, they also have to create all the supporting materials to go around a new product. I was reminded of that when working with Apple Configurator today. The whole process is still very strange. I bought some apps in bulk from the volume purchasing program interface, then downloaded a spreadsheet with all of the codes. Next, I had to open the spreadsheet and use the first code to actually redeem the app in iTunes. I then have to add the app to Apple Configurator and import the spreadsheet to be able to put it on the number of devices I need. Did that seem confusing? Yeah, I thought so.

I've also had a time with the volume purchase program this week. When importing into Apple Configurator, it marked 1 code as redeemed (a bug that was already suppose to be patched) and said another was invalid. I had to email a special department to get it resolved.

I say all that to say that launching a new product is hard. It's not just about an idea, design, code, manufacturing or marketing. It's taken Apple 2.5 years to get the iPad where IT departments can have some control over it. A company with 100 billion dollars in the bank can't just fix problems with money. It takes time, effort and lots of testing. It's like Apple is the parent, and their products are children. They take time to mature into what we always knew they could be.