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Are we still judging Apple by Steve Jobs?

Posted: , by Michael H.

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Are we still judging Apple by Steve Jobs?
As we've mentioned a number of times now, often in defense of Google, companies have personalities, insofar as companies reflect the personality of their CEOs. We have mentioned this in order to squash silly rumors that Google is out to steal your private data, or is planning to implode the Android ecosystem by closing it off and making its own devices with Motorola. This time though, we have to take a moment to consider how this philosophy affects Apple. Apple is known as Steve Jobs' company, and essentially an extension of the man himself. The trouble is that Steve is no longer the CEO; Tim Cook is. 

And, that is where we need to make a point here. We're talking about how Apple does business not Apple products. Apple products are still a matter of opinion. The products won't change in core philosophy. They will still be geared for ease and integration, even if that means limitations. That may not be everyone's style, but we can't begrudge the choice to those who love Apple products, and there are a lot of those people out there. What we are talking about is how Apple has done business, which has been inexorably tied to Steve Jobs' personality, and the fact that Apple may change how it does business with Tim Cook in charge.  

Over the course of the life of Apple, the company has been an ambitious, cocky, but lovable upstart under the leadership of a young Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak; an in-over-its-head visionless mess under John Sculley, Michael Spindler, and Gil Amelio; and a focused, innovative, and vengeful profit-machine under a matured Steve Jobs. The question is: what kind of company will it be under Tim Cook? 

Steve Jobs' Apple

Steve Jobs was an incredibly smart man with a focused vision and an eye for design, especially in regards to minimalism. He was also moody, often cruel, obsessed with image, and able to live in his "reality distortion field" as Walter Isaacson said. As a reflection of this, Apple products have been simple, well designed, and focused/integrated, while Apple the company has been vindictive, often litigious, but with a certain coolness. 

Are we still judging Apple by Steve Jobs?
Apple often threatened or sued other companies, which in and of itself was nothing out of the ordinary, but Apple always had a certain edge to its lawsuits. The company would always go for blood, aiming to enforce injunctions on products that it (Steve) saw as infringing (stealing) its (his) patents (ideas). Of course, we all know that Steve once said that he wanted to "destroy Android" and wage "thermonuclear war" over what he saw as a "stolen" product. On that path, Apple sued a number of Android manufacturers including HTC, Motorola, and especially targeted Samsung, and sought injunctions on devices, eventually forced both HTC and Samsung to change products to avoid patent litigation. 

Apple used highly questionable manufacturing plants in Asia, and never had to really answer for it under Steve Jobs. The same things that were shown in that now famous ABC investigation of Foxconn have been happening for years, but no one ever had the courage to take the protest directly to Apple HQ like we saw last month. 

Apple product announcements were big, theatrical events with iconic images and an incredible, amazing, magical amount of superlatives. 

Moving past Steve

Unfortunately, Steve has passed, and with his passing, there is an inevitable shift in the way Apple conducts business. Although Steve vowed revenge on Eric Schmidt and Android, it's highly unlikely (though not technically impossible) that he left it as a request in his will that the war be completed. We have already seen that begin to shift, as Apple recently offered Android manufacturers a licensing deal for use of its patents. As we mentioned before, suing over patent violation is nothing new, but rather than Steve's aim of a kill-shot, most patent lawsuits end up with licensing agreements, just like the one that Microsoft has with over half of all Android manufacturers, and the one that Motorola offered to Apple to settle their patent dispute. This is the traditional way of business; don't try to destroy competitors, just profit from them. 

Are we still judging Apple by Steve Jobs?
As far as design of products, we can assume that the company will continue its trend of excellence as long as Jony Ive is working there, because he was always considered the true genius of the relationship, whereas Steve was more of a collaborator/visionary. There is no reason not to trust Jony Ive, but we have yet to see what come after Steve in the design department, because the iPhone 4S and new iPad are both essentially identical to their predecessors. 

And, that brings us to Tim Cook. He's an intelligent man with a passion for efficiency, due to his background in supply chain management. The rest of what makes up the man is still not fully known, though we have seen that he is not as vengeful as Steve with his offer of compromise with Android makers. He has also started a new era of relative transparency with Apple, which has been more open about the companies it uses for production, and has joined the Fair Labor Association. These are small concessions, but potentially meaningful ones, because Apple is seen as a sort of role model for other companies. Plenty of other companies use similar business practices, but don't get the level of heat because there is a certain fervor around Apple products, both from fans and detractors. 

We can't say completely, because the timeline is fairly short, but it seems as though Tim Cook's Apple is a more conscientious and responsible company. It has been more open about its manufacturing process, and although it is a very small change, Apple has begun taking smaller profit margins on devices, which is something that the company would also need to do to build its products more ethically as has been demanded by critics. 

A new Apple

But at the new iPad announcement, Cook was subtly clear that he is not Steve Jobs. To an extent, the new iPad announcement was something of a eulogy to Steve Jobs. The company didn't have time to really design a tribute to Steve with the iPhone 4S announcement. The closest they got there was that Tim cook wore a black shirt tucked into jeans, which seemed like something of an homage. 

Are we still judging Apple by Steve Jobs?
The new iPad announcement had all of the trappings of a Steve Jobs' Apple announcement: heavy rumors, spectacle, slides, and a moving ending. Still, the entire affair seemed to be both eulogy to Steve, and introduction to Tim. We still had the amazing superlatives, but most came from Phil Schiller, not Tim Cook. We were not given a "one more thing..." to wow us, but a moving message from the new CEO to his team. Even the naming of the new iPad broke from the traditions set by Steve Jobs, as though this device was not a continuation of the iPads that came before, but was a new device from a new company. And, possibly most telling, we had the introduction of a new Apple logo. The logo itself is again both a tribute to Steve Jobs with its vaguely tie-dyed aesthetic, but it is a clear indication that this is a new Apple. 

Many Apple critics/haters are still clinging to the same old arguments that the company is overly litigious, hypocritical about patent disputes, and constantly releasing the same products. The last argument is pure bias, which could be applied to any company really. Any yearly iteration on hardware is going to be a slow evolution and not an epic change (as Apple marketing claims, but of course that is the job of marketing.) As far as the former arguments, time will tell, but the early indications are that this is not the same Apple. The company may sue over patent disputes, but many companies do the same thing, and if Apple aims for licensing deals rather than injunctions, there is no difference in practice than patent lawsuits that we have seen from Microsoft, Motorola, Samsung, HTC, or Nokia. 

There will always be Apple haters out there, but the same arguments may not be there for too long, because the personality of the company is changing. This isn't Steve Jobs' Apple anymore, it's Jony Ive and Tim Cook's. Maybe that means something. It is a bit too early to tell, but at the very least the company should get a period to prove itself before the same jabs are thrown. It may very well be the same company it has always been, but at least right now, it seems to be doing business in a slightly different way. 

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posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:13 4

1. Birds (Posts: 957; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)


YEP becuse as Jazmine Sullivan says "I searched all around but there's no body else in the...the world" That can replace Steve Jobs. But I wish Tim Cook the best though.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:15 15

2. jmoita2 (Posts: 930; Member since: 23 Dec 2011)


Moving past Steve??? How about building Apple products in the USA,instead of enslaving poor,half-starved people in the Third World to make obscene profits??? How about not trying to drown all competition in oceans of lawsuits??? Untill these things happen,this "moving past" is just not possible.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:19 21

3. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


How about EVERY company manufactures in those areas (not just tech companies either) because there is business incentive to do so. Apple is not alone in this. It may be a practice that we want to change, but singling out Apple as the problem doesn't help anything.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:41 12

8. bigboy029 (Posts: 74; Member since: 03 Jan 2011)


Thank you! I dont understand why everyone thinks Apple is the only one doing this!

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 23:04 5

84. Mr.Best (Posts: 79; Member since: 17 Jan 2012)


So because Apple is not alone in doing this makes them right? For a "bigboy" that's rather small thinking.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:43 10

10. itiswhatitis (Posts: 421; Member since: 23 Jan 2012)


No,it wont but eventually it will because everyone's watching Apple and people(in general) are more interested in apple than other companies so if apple decides to do things differently other companies just might follow.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 15:18

24. rf1975 (Posts: 238; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)


So you think that other companies like HP, Lenovo, Samsung & HTC will open their supplier & factories to FLA in near future.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 15:31 1

25. itiswhatitis (Posts: 421; Member since: 23 Jan 2012)


Its' possible no one can really know for sure

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 13:19

115. firelightx (Posts: 71; Member since: 13 Oct 2011)


Half of the companies in your list aren't even American companies. I hope you're not asking them to move their factories here when they have no ties here beyond "products sell well over there."

That said, I do think that if Apple were to make a drastic change to improve labor practices, some of these companies would follow suit. Samsung in particular can't stand to let Apple do anything without pulling the "Me too oh oh oh me me me!" routine. And I say that being a pretty heavy Samsung fan (Galaxy Nexus represent!)

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 15:48 12

28. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


I have no problem with putting pressure on Apple to change, but to act as though Apple is the only company in the wrong doesn't help anything. When was the last time you saw someone calling out a company like Samsung, Microsoft, Asus, Nokia, or Motorola (now Google) for using the same facilities for their products?

Aiming at Apple doesn't put pressure on everyone to be better, it deflects blame away from other companies and onto Apple. If you want pressure on everyone, we have to put pressure on everyone.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 03:57 3

86. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


Michael,

That happens regularly on this site.. by ME. :) I knock every one of those companies when they do something wrong. BTW, Samsung Galaxy products are made in house by workers with some rights and actual employee benefits. Still not great, but its definitely better than foxconn. I also dont believe that Nokia uses foxconn either. However I have been loud about every company that uses foxconn. If people would join me in taking a stand and not buying foxconn products things might change. Apathy however, will just keep things right where they are.

And no, aiming at apple does put pressure on others because its "follow the leader". You go after the big guy first and get him to change and then the rest follow suite. Why would smaller companies change and take the hit on profits if the larger, massively profitable one wont?

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 07:50 2

97. 8logic (Posts: 129; Member since: 05 Mar 2012)


first of all, do anyone here have family or know people in china? if you do, you would know getting paid $2/hr USD is like getting paid $13 something over there which, is a lot better than a lot of minimum wage jobs that requires manual labor and only pays $1200-$1500 yuan, and thats a salary pay which means they work more hours!
so, if you can do the math, its really a lot better pay than other jobs there.
AND PLEASE do not call it slavery, cause you have no idea what slavery is. these jobs is the single reason why china and other poorer third world country have seen an increase is standard of living.
people can complain about losing jobs in the developed country, but to my experience, these are the same people that complain about not helping the poor in third world countries (make no sense right?) if they only know that for every job lost in the US, 2.5 is created in a third world country, and that is 2.5 person that is not starving.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 11:46 1

108. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


for a person with "logic" in their name, you think you would have some.

BTW, apple workers in the ipad plant in Chenzen, just got a RAISE to about 60 cents USD.

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 16:41 3

119. 8logic (Posts: 129; Member since: 05 Mar 2012)


You are the one without a clue. $2 might not mean that much to you but, $2 is $13 yuan there. Their minimum wage is about the same as US at about $1500 a MONTH with more hours. So, $13 a HOUR is f**king pretty GOOD. 1500/13= that's only 115 hour of work so, the rest of extra time they but in is above national average. I have plenty of family members there that get pay way less. So, before you start taking s**t, learn that pay in term of of USD is relative to the standard of living in the given location.

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 16:59

120. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


did you notice the part where they only make 60 cents an hour at the iPad factory.. they dont get over time, they only average arond 60 bux after taxes a paycheck for an average of 60-100 hrs. I'd also love to see where you came up with this "2 dollars in chinese is equivilant to 13 american". Show me that documentation please.

yea.. i dont know where you are getting this 2 buck an hour thing, but from every report ive seen so far the highest pay was 1.60, AFTER the last round of raises, and that was at the Xbox factory. Also, every time Foxconn gives a raise they also raise the cost of all the food and goods sold to their employees to recoup that raise. So they dont actually get much of a raise at all, do they? Publicity, that is all.
Again, ya missed the easy logic.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 08:08

124. 8logic (Posts: 129; Member since: 05 Mar 2012)


are you stupid????
the exchange rate from USD to yuan is $1USD: 6.35 YUAN (google it!)
where do you get 60 cent pay? the pay is somewhere between $1.70- $2.50
source:
http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/24/the-ieconomy-how-much-do-foxconn-workers-make/
KEEP IN MIND $400 USD (average monthly pay) X 6.35 (exchange rate) = $2,540 yuan

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 08:33

100. itiswhatitis (Posts: 421; Member since: 23 Jan 2012)


You can't put pressure on everyone cuz it wont likely be effective right now apple is like a leader (in terms of sales)so if you go after the leader everyone else will follow,besides they will also earned respect apart from $

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 17:01 3

42. Lucas777 (Posts: 2121; Member since: 06 Jan 2011)


nobody is going to minimize their profits because apple would.. and apple never would.. which is why other companies emulate them in the first place

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 14:50 9

19. SuperAndroidEvo (Posts: 3738; Member since: 15 Apr 2011)


We HAVE to single out Apple. They are the most profitable company that is not an oil company in the history of this planet. Apple has no excuse for what is happening over there. When you are number one the spotlight is on you. That is why Apple is singled out!

Also can poor Steve Jobs finally rest in peace, why must we STILL keep talking about a man who's has time expired? Apple has moved on & the point is that Apple is a company the Steve Jobs built. That will NEVER change.

Why does it matter if we are judging Apple by Steve Jobs? What does that even mean? Apple is Apple right? Because Steve Jobs is now dead, Apple is actually trying to license some of their patents, that would have NEVER happened on the Steve Jobs watch.

Steve Jobs when he was alive was like the Great Eye of Mordor or the Eye of Sauron watching ALL in the land of Apple, making sure his will is followed! It looks like Apple may be moving away from that. It’s STILL too early to see if that is true or not.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 15:55 11

29. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Even from the beginning of your reply to the end you started to come around to my thinking.

Yes, Apple is the biggest, so they will get the spotlight, but that doesn't mean we ignore the fact that all of Apple's competitors use those same facilities. That's the problem I have with Apple haters. It's fine to call out Apple on problems, but they can't act like they're superior because Motorola, Nokia and Samsung use the same production scheme as Apple.

Apple is not Apple. Re-read the opening two paragraphs of my article for the reasoning. The Apple we knew died with Steve Jobs. Sure, the products will stay the same or similar, but there's no reason to believe the company will be run the same way. If you don't like the products, that's fine, but the way a company is run changes, so we can't jump to conclusions there. I say Tim Cook gets the benefit of the doubt until he proves he'll be just as ruthless as Jobs.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 04:03 2

87. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


Apple is still apple. Steve's influence will be felt for a little while longer in the products at least. Companies plan 2+ generations ahead in development, Apple is no different. Maybe the i5 is far enough away that Cook is able to make adjustments, but maybe not. His influence probably wont be fully felt until the i6.

That whole "independent commission" nonsense was started under jobs. They joined up while he was still alive. And its also a front company started by Nike and other major human rights violators as a glorified PR firm.

This article would have been better in a bout a year from now when Job's influence was really fading. As it is right now, the company is making its first minor wiggles as a "Jobs free" company and has a long time to go before it is seen as truely "post Jobs". Sure, Cook might have offered manufacturers a lifeline, but it was still an Apple style lifeline, over inflated and with a noose tied to the end so they could hang themselves. Apple does not have nearly the patent portfolio to justify the type of $$ that he was demanding per handset.

Cook might not have went for a direct kill shot with that, but he is trying to trick them into killing themselves while Apple profiteers off of the maneuver. Dont get me wrong. There are little glimmers of hope with Cook like when he immediately started allowing people to set aside part of their paycheck for charity, but I really dont think Jobs would have left Cook in charge if he didnt really feel that the apple didnt fall far from the tree. For better or worse Jobs was a man with a laser like but also equally narrow vision. He would have found a successor that fit into that vision.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 16:46 1

40. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)


I agree with you to a point. I think if you are trying to incite change, you do have to target the biggest violator. But I disagree by changing Apple, that you change the whole industry. I've said this before, but if Apple completely switched it up and brought all of their jobs to the United States, that wouldn't cure America's problem of wanting everything as cheap as possible. That's the real problem you are dealing with. When Americans (and others for that matter) stop needing their electonics for next to nothing, outsourcing will stop.

Labor ethics with Foxconn and China overall is another topic...

Now...as for Steve Jobs, a lot of the hatred Apple gets is because of Steve Jobs. I admire the man, but I also realize that he is just a man. I'm a huge Apple fan, but even the "You're holding it wrong" thing made me go on a tirade on PhoneArena about how pompous that remark was.

Apple today only exists because of Jobs. Not Apple overall, but Apple since he returned. He made such HUGE changes to the company that it truly is his child. Sure, others helped him form it, but they wouldn't exist in the company without him. It's going to take time for Apple to turn into something that isn't just Steve Jobs, just like Microsoft took a while to not be just Bill Gates...or Ford being something other than Henry Ford.

I agree, people need to rethink Apple. The company isn't just its CEO anymore. Tim Cook seems to be more of a team guy than the iconic figure and that's a good thing. The stock prices won't fluctuate based off his health...or what he's wearing that day.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 15:58 2

30. cgyspy (Posts: 13; Member since: 25 Jan 2012)


True that other companies are doing the same thing..but Apple is the one taking to the extreme. How come other companies manufacturing in China doesnt have the same profit margin?. The way I see it Apple is making these obscene profits in two ways..by exploiting labor in China....and by not paying the royalties on technologies patented by other companies that it is using. Recent attempt by Apple to settle with Motorola and Samsung on royalty payment proves this. Like Steve Job said, you have to be a genius to steal technology from other company and not pay for it.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 16:19 4

37. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Other companies don't have the profit margin because they don't have the business model and product pricing that Apple does. It's not like Motorola and Samsung are paying those workers more. Their devices cost just as little to produce as Apple, they just can't price their devices as high as Apple.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 04:09 2

88. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


Samsung pays a smidge more but offers actual benefits and vacation/sick pay.
Pay is relevant to the country/area you are in. Its not like they are going to be paid american wages. Judge them on how they treat their workers and if the pay that they do receive is enough to make them in the middle class somewhere and not still poor. Comparing that, Samsung looks like a frikkin angel compared to Apple/foxconn, who still gets paid less than a buck an hour at their Chenzen factory which makes the ipads. Even MS pays their foxconn workers more at that Xbox factory that had the "suicide or better working conditions" stand off a few months ago.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 08:33

101. ZEUS.the.thunder.god (unregistered)


i agree with you Micheal on most of the things you said in this beautiful piece but i guess its too early to say that apple has changed. and yeah they are constatntly releasing the same product with minor changes. that probably works for apple in terms of sales but they have not invented anything significant, apart from silly law suits, for quite some time now.
and i think the reason apple gets the heat for things which other companies are also doing, because they market themselves as the best.

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 13:06

117. Slammer (Posts: 926; Member since: 03 Jun 2010)


Yes. Maybe others are practicing the same business, however, Apple's extreme profit margin for the same practice over the others, sings with the abuse they are willing to support just to make the bottom line. That is the bone of contention that makes Apple the target.

It's not ok for others to be practicing this and the shear profits Apple makes of this practice, makes it far worse. We can all look at this in different perspective, but the bottom line is that Apple has exploited the measure by facilitating the practice for their benefit and then denounce that they are not in total agreement with Foxconn's business directive. This is hypocritical and reeks with more consumer manipulation to make them look like the champs. The disqusting part of individuals' attitudes, is that it is ok Apple does it because all the others do it.

I'm not sure what side of the fence you're on here Michael. I understand your post to correct the others, but in the same breath, your excusing Apple's stance. A stance that has made them one of the richest companies in the world in ten short years by abusing this practice.

Yes, we need change. Are you willing to boycott Apple to get your point across? Or are you going to continue to keep them in eyesight with the constant barrage of news articles? The truth will be answered by your actions.

John B.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 08:05 2

99. 8logic (Posts: 129; Member since: 05 Mar 2012)


first of all, do anyone here have family or know people in china? if you do, you would know getting paid $2/hr USD is like getting paid $13 something over there which, is a lot better than a lot of minimum wage jobs that requires manual labor and only pays $1200-$1500 yuan, and thats a salary pay which means they work more hours!
so, if you can do the math, its really a lot better pay than other jobs there.

AND PLEASE do not call it slavery, cause you have no idea what slavery is. these jobs is the single reason why china and other poorer third world country have seen an increase is standard of living.

people can complain about losing jobs in the developed country, but to my experience, these are the same people that complain about not helping the poor in third world countries (make no sense right?) if they only know that for every job lost in the US, 2.5 is created in a third world country, and that is 2.5 person that is not starving.

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 09:46 3

116. kaushaln (Posts: 1; Member since: 11 Mar 2012)


If that was to be done, an ipad would cost around $1400. Don't think the guys at apple are foolish. They are wickedly smart

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 14:39

118. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


no, it would cost only a little more than it does now, if at all. Apple makes stratospheric profit margins, they have a bit of wiggle room to swallow costs if they need to.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:24 8

4. doubler86 (Posts: 317; Member since: 26 Jan 2011)


You have to realize it was Steve Jobs that brought back Apple from nearly going bankrupt a little less than 15 years ago. When Steve jobs first left Apple it fell, when he came back it became the company it is today. The question is can they stay on this trend now without him 5 to 10 years from now.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 07:58 3

98. 8logic (Posts: 129; Member since: 05 Mar 2012)


actually, Microsoft saved apples....
no one was buying apple because they were not productive and was not compatible with the rest of the world. Microsoft made office of Macs and that saved their ass. bill gates did this only after jobs plead with him.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:29 10

5. tacohunter (Posts: 408; Member since: 06 Nov 2011)


Great article, we'll see how apple will develop further. But still haters are gonna hate.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 17:18 4

44. EclipseGSX (Posts: 1546; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


shut up bro

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:37 16

6. iiiarena (Posts: 4; Member since: 09 Mar 2012)


To iphonearena & all ishaaap....

Apple is still apple...
wanna proof??? ibook
1. apple refuse an ibook because it links to amazon.... a sign that poison apple still poison apple
2. apple won't do open standard ibook, because they want to kill competition

patents.... offering android to pay to apple??
if apple really sincere, things like slide to unlock should be drop by now, and not asking $$$ for it. it's ridicules from start, and also still ridicules now when apple ask for $$$.

btw, i wonder what is ivy doing in apple HQ all day. all iphone and ipad looks the same. he must be sleeping.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 14:15 5

14. darkkjedii (Posts: 10071; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


Awww shutup dummy

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 14:29 6

17. tacohunter (Posts: 408; Member since: 06 Nov 2011)


Why does this post get 5 thumbs up? The comments of PA are going down in value.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 16:00 9

31. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


I cannot fathom who would thumb up this rant.

Apple will still make Apple products, which means closed and integrated. If you don't like it, don't buy it. Plenty of people do like it. Leave them their choice.

What kind of phone do you own? Because there's quite a high chance that the manufacturer, whoever it may be, is receiving licensing fees from another company because of a patent dispute. You're in a glass house with that argument.

Jony Ive may not have been given much to do with the last two products, but you have to give the man credit, he is a fantastic designer.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:38 3

7. itiswhatitis (Posts: 421; Member since: 23 Jan 2012)


Every companies want to make profits,besides if apple products were made in USA it would cost more or apple would start taking less profits which i don't think will ever happen.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:41 2

9. tward291 (Posts: 559; Member since: 14 Feb 2012)


great now do one about microsoft and bill gates

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:49 3

11. iiiiiphonearena (banned) (Posts: 3; Member since: 09 Mar 2012)


oh no.... (my mom is right, hell is real)
apple article again... and this time try to defend apple

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 16:04 9

33. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


There is nothing I hate more in the world than those that cling to this asinine "iPhoneArena" crap. If you want to read in bias, that's your own bias you'll find, because we have damn fine coverage of Android (and we're working on Windows Phone).

Apple isn't out of the line of fire for the bad business decisions it has made, but with a new CEO, the company at least deserves a little while to prove whether its on the same track laid down by Steve Jobs or not. Early evidence says the company is turning a bit, we just have to see how far it goes.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 17:04 4

43. Lucas777 (Posts: 2121; Member since: 06 Jan 2011)


thank you… u are a great example of an android fan (im pretty sure) who sees everything for what it is… u show how an android fan can like android, but see the value of apple… so good job and keep up the great articles!

and btw, idk how anybody can think this sight is pro-apple after reading a few comments sections… and please more wp!

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 17:51 4

53. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


That's exactly why I'm open about the fact that I prefer Android. It doesn't mean that all the other platforms are bad, they just don't suit my needs. It's absurd that Android fans constantly praise the choice afforded in the ecosystem, while simultaneously claiming that Apple should be abolished from the market.

It's equally absurd when anyone takes criticism of a company or praise of another as a sign of bias. There's value all around and problems all around.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 11:48

109. remixfa (Posts: 13902; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


ooh ooh.. ill write for windows phone! whats the pay per piece? :) can i get a nokia 900 with Tmobile signals as payment? :)

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 19:14 2

72. protozeloz (Posts: 5367; Member since: 16 Sep 2010)


that comment from a nut head that created a name to mock the site of?

oh please

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 04:51

89. bayusuputra (Posts: 941; Member since: 12 Feb 2012)


your mom was right, hell is real..

but i don't see this as defending apple.. it's a reflection about apple.. i hate apple not for their products, but for their business practices.. but i can see that slowly changing now that Steve has moved to a better place than this world..

I can't see why Michael is defending apple in this article when there are more bad than good points that he elaborated about apple.. but in the end, he still came back as neutral, and i think that is one good editorial writing, one that engage your own judgement about the matter at hand..

and if you think that this is pro apple or against apple, then you have to start to read the article again with an open mind, not with fanboyism..

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 23:49

121. W.P._Android_in_that_Order (Posts: 206; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)


I agree with you. Like the article hinted at, Tim Cook seems to be turning apple in the right direction. It was a thorough look at where the company could be potentially headed, and i must say that when Steve was in charge, i didn't have respect for apple. I really feel different about Tim Cook. If he continues to do what he has been doing, things will be good.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 13:50 4

12. PhoneCritic (Posts: 352; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


Great artical Mike. Thank you for a fair and unbias artical. Though I am not 100% sure that Tim Cook is about to make any impacting change to the Apple culture - I do think he will take little steps to define himself as the new CEO of Apple. Again as you said only time well tell.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 16:05 5

34. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Thanks! I'm not 100% sure that Tim Cook will bring Apple all the way around to how we hope the company could be, but at least for now he seems to be edging towards that.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 14:03 2

13. ghost__uwi (Posts: 175; Member since: 28 Nov 2011)


Haters gonna.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 05:01

90. bayusuputra (Posts: 941; Member since: 12 Feb 2012)


like?

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 14:24 5

15. ilia1986 (unregistered)


Michael - excellent article.

However Apple - despite being a slightly different Apple - is still Apple.

Apple is the only company in the industry which treats computers - PCs - as devices with only a given set of features and functions - instead of treating them like what they really are - sandboxes filled with sand. Lots of sand.

Let's look at an example. Most succesful franchise of video games invlolving cars? GTA. Why? The gamer has almost infinite freedom in the game. He can go wherever he wants whenever he wants and do whatever he wants however he wants it. Of course in the early stages there is a guided tutorial which explains the basics - but afterwards - the player is left to do whatever he desires. And the franchise has been ultra successful.

That's Android. After an initial learning curve - you got the freedom of choice to do almost anything! And it's great!

What is Apple? Or specifically iOS? iOS is like taking that same GTA game with the same graphics, guns, characters, cars, etc etc - but removing freedom of choice completely. At any given time you can only do X and do it using method Y while you are in location Z. Sounds fun? No? I thought so.

What has Apple done? Apple has introduced the GTA - as mentioned above - without freedom - and people were so hyped by the whole "OMG I can shoot a gun or drive a car in a video game, that's never been seen before" thing - that they bought it in the millions. A year later comes Google - and introduces GTA as we know it today - with the freedom of choice and everything - and initially - nobody cares!

Why? Because the world was already accustomed to the magical revolutionary insanely cool omfgthisbetterthanjesus GTA hyped to the extreme by Apple marketing which has almost no freedom of choice - but introduced the concept of firing a gun and driving a car in a video game. When comes Google and sells the real deal - GTA with the freedom of choice as we know it today - the Apple fans dismiss it as blatant copying, and claim that "nobody really wants to get into a car, drive into some unpredetermined location, get out, take out an M16 and shoot a police car - twice in each tire to make it crash into a bus". You get the point.

This is why what Apple does so pisses me off. They are treating the PC as a toaster. You can only put bread in it - for a set amount of time - and it comes with a set amount of functions. The truth is that this "toaster" is in fact capable of so much more. That GTA game in which you could only do let's say storyline missions - one after the other - without freedom of choice - wouldn't it be much much much much better if you HAD in fact that freedom of choice like GTA has today?

The PC is a sandbox. It has limitless capabilities and potential. And it MUST NOT be turned into a hollow platform in order for which to function you need to download a proprietary app from a proprietary app store.

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 14:59 2

22. saiki4116 (Posts: 324; Member since: 31 Mar 2011)


good analogy...

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 15:16 2

23. itiswhatitis (Posts: 421; Member since: 23 Jan 2012)


NIce thought!

posted on 09 Mar 2012, 15:43 8

27. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


Yes, Apple will still make Apple products. That's not the point. You may not like Apple products, and prefer Android. I do too, but there are quite a lot of people that love Apple products, so there is no reason to change that. If you don't like Apple, don't buy the product, but don't begrudge others the choice just because you don't like it. The option is still out there for those that want full-functionality PCs and mobile devices, but for those who don't, there is the ease of Apple. That's not a problem, and there's no reason that needs to change.

The difference is in how Apple does business. It can still sell the same products, but a change in how it deals with the production of those products, and the lawsuits surrounding those products could be huge. Even if you like Apple products, no one likes a bully, and with Steve gone, there's no reason why Apple has to be that way.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 01:01

85. ilia1986 (unregistered)


Michael, the problem is the fact that the larger Apple gets - the more influence it spreads on other companies. You say that "The option is still out there for those that want full-functionality PCs and mobile devices". That's true - as of today. The problem is - that might not stay this way forever.

The larger a company grows - the more other - smaller companies - tend to follow it - to replicate it's success. We can already see this in form, if not in fucntion when it comes to Intel ultrabooks replicating the Air, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 replicating (somewhat) the iPad, countless iPhone KIRFs and so on.

If Apple continues to grow in power and influence - there will be more and more companies which will try to do things the way Apple does them: a completely closed and sealed eco-system. That, coupled with the brainwashing marketing might ensure that most of the world will never know what a filesystem is, or that it even exists.

That is my biggest fear. I fear that full-functionality PCs will be relegated to the market share of Linux in the world of Desktop PCs right now - it will only have a small bunch of enthusiasts supporting it, without any official support from the big companies.

Already we can see this in many many countries. The iPhone is regarded as the de-facto choice when it comes to having a smartphone. When an ad shows on the web - more times than not - the mobile app associated with the product is for iOS and not for Android.

Now when it comes to people prefering to buy an Apple product: Choice is fine, however because Apple does marketing about 6000 times better than ALL the Android manufacturers combined, Apple has a much larger mind-share. That creates the problem I described in my previous post, since a person who faslely believes that Apple invented the smartphone, the touchscreen, mobile applications, etc etc will dismiss Android as a blatant copy - and no matter how many more unique features Android has - he will claim that "Surely Apple knows how to do things in the best way".

This is akin to a man living in the jungle for his whole life who is accustomed to eating raw meat. When this man is found and offered a medium-made steak - he will refuse it, claiming that surely, nature knows how to feed him in the best way. Can this man be called Stupid? That's an interesting question which would suggest the same of Apple consumers who refuse to switch to Android once becoming aware of it.

Thing is - just as we would be better off with a steak than a piece of raw meat - in all aspects - the world would be better off with an eco-system system which is completely Open Source.

In conclusion: Apple is winning right now. And that is despite the fact that Android has a larger market share. Apple is winning because they got a significant portion of the population buying a smartphone\tablet with Android on it which lacks freedom of choice and many other features. A very good-looking smarthphone\tablet - but still.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 11:36 3

103. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2647; Member since: 26 May 2011)


I can't fit my whole response here. I'll write a new column and have it up either tomorrow or Monday. I've been meaning to hit this topic anyway.

posted on 10 Mar 2012, 12:04 2

111. ilia1986 (unregistered)


I am glad, Michael :)

Looking forward to it.

posted on 11 Mar 2012, 23:57

122. nickjjay (Posts: 79; Member since: 10 Oct 2011)


likewise

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