Would You Be Happier If The iPhone 6 Was In The Shape Of A Hamburger?

Sandy Cannold:

To me though, all this over-the-top fanfare and even the record-breaking first weekend of sales could actually be cause for concern. Now before Apple lovers pillory me and say that I have no idea what I am talking about, hear me out. I fully concede that Apple is going to make billions in profit from the sale of these new devices and the company is in no danger of becoming Blackberry or Nokia. But the reason I am voicing a bit of doubt is that it seems like Apple is now trying to squeeze every last bit of profit it can out of an aging, shall we call it, iStone.

iStone? Is that what we are calling the iPhone now? Apple sold 9 million iPhones over the weekend and 200 million devices were upgraded to iOS 7. I'd say that is a pretty good weekend for the ole iStone.

Let’s face it this new iPhone is just an upgrade, a refresh, dare I say a sequel. I am sure that true tech devotees will tell me how wrong I am, that this new device is smarter, faster, revolutionary, etc. But to me and millions like me it seems a lot more evolutionary. It looks a whole lot like the last iPhone and the one before that and the one before that too.

What do you expect? A radical phone redesign every year for the sake of new? Would you be happier if the iPhone 6 was in the shape of a hamburger?

And you know what else looks the same, the way Apple staged the release of the 5S and the 5C. Just like every launch since the first iPhone hit the market we watched people wait in line, sleep outside the store and ham it up for the cameras once they got their hands on their shiny new device. Hasn’t Apple seen how the competition makes fun of these events in commercials? It feels like Groundhog Day, expected, cliché. Those are not words that you often see associated with Apple, but right now they seem to fit.

Yeah, it has got to get old for Apple that people line up to buy the new products. I am sure they would much rather that no one showed up. Samsung must be so happy that they don't have to deal with this.

This is no longer the Apple of Steve Jobs. The Apple that seemingly every couple of years rocked the consumer electronics world with a product so innovative that it changed industries forever. He did it with music, Smartphones, computing, the list goes on and on. But sadly since he passed away it seems like that era of innovation has given way to an age of incremental change. I firmly believe that Steve Jobs wouldn’t have been satisfied to only pocket billions upon billions on tweaked products alone.

No, you are just remembering 2007-2010 when they released the iPhone and the iPad. It's rare that a company can release 2 category defining products within a few years of each other. Apple did it then and they can do it again, but it's unrealistic to expect it every year or even every three years.

So for me it boils down to a two simple questions: Does Apple become a boring profit machine like Microsoft, churning out upgrades and improvements to its existing line of hits? Or do they find a way to create another “must have” new product, new category, new something that we never thought we needed and we can’t live without?

This is a gross misunderstanding of why Microsoft is failing. Microsoft isn't faiing because it was a boring profit machine. It's failing because it didn't look to the the future in regards to vertical integration and simplicity in computing.

The ball is now squarely in Tim Cook’s court. If next year at this time Apple unveils the iPad 6 or the mini2 or Cars 3 from Pixar than we’ll know that Apple has become the shiny new creator of utilitarian Tauruses and not flashy Teslas.

I truly hope Tim Cook doesn’t become addicted to the easy money of “incrementalism.” I hope there are many more game-changing chapters in Apple’s future.

This is how Apple has always worked. It builds a product and then it slowly turns the screws of excellence. Apple makes evolutionary products and then 'incrementally' makes them even better. It has done this with its desktop Macs, laptop Macs, iPods, iPhones, and iPads. Incrementalism is what happens when the original concept is still the right concept. Drastic changes year over year is called shotgun product development.

I guess someone had to try to find something negative with a 9 million sales weekend.