8 thoughts on “Did Apple blow it, big time?

  1. Hi Mike,

    I agree with your observations for the most part, but I think the conclusions here are too dire. Apple will do well with the new phone (which is a winner in many ways, as you point out) . It really isn’t the post-Jobs era yet and momentum will continue. The next-gen iPhone will indeed have to be a sensation to meet another round of swelling expectations.

    Of course, time will tell.



  2. d’oh! it’s not apple’s responsibility to keep up with the bullshit from the rumour-mongers. the ones who got it wrong were the idiots claiming it’d be a new iphone5 with a stunned looking tapered case. why that becomes apple’s fault is really curious.

    by analogy, does that mean obama is at fault because all the progressive idiots thought he was the new fdr when in fact he was just the slightly less inept second-coming of george w?

    anyone who puts credence on the rumour mongers is a fool. apple is run by professionals, not idiot bloggers ….

  3. Apple never hyped a iphone 5, the phones have followed the same order 3 3g 3gs 4, who would think it would just jump to a 5. I am considering a new iphone, based on the camera alone. I always use that on my bike rides. Plus with the new camera speed, i can snap the photo of a license plate of a camera in less then a second, could make a big difference. Iphone was already the most popular selling phone and now they made it better. People will continue to buy. With Job’s passing the new iphone has new meaning iphone (4S)teve…………

    1. Justin: You’re absolutely correct, Apple never said anything about what their next iPhone would be like, and, as you pointed out, they did have both a 3G and a 3GS (don’t think they had a plain old 3 did they?). But for the latest version the longer product cycle may have worked to increase expectations and fuel rumors of a product beyond what Apple could deliver. As those rumors became positively outrageous (the best example being the Sprint exclusive I had mentioned in my piece, which was picked up by no less than the Wall Street Journal), Apple had to consider whether it was business as usual (“usual” in this case being their past history of delivering product that actually lived up to the rumors) or try to tone things down a bit by factually discrediting some of the rumors. Apple could have said “Why are people so infatuated with the #5? We’re satisfied that we’ve laid the groundwork for a series of phones based upon the iPhone4, the most-successful cell phone in the world. ” OK, that’s pretty klunky; I’m sure Apple could had said it a whole lot better.

      Will I buy an iPhone4s? You bet. Even if my iPhone4 hadn’t been pick-pocketed in France this past July, I would have gone for the new phone if only for the camera alone. The faster performance will be nice as well, although I really didn’t have issues with the iPhone4 in that area. I think it’s a darned fine product, and, for me, I can’t think of anything that disappoints me, aside from a desire for a slightly-larger screen. –Mike–

  4. The 2 year product upgrade cycle from contract terms isn’t near the end, so this isn’t the time for a brand new product. Too many iPhone 4 users aren’t ready to upgrade, and neither are the buyers of the finally good Android phones. Instead Apple has more networks and more lower priced options which greatly expands their market.

    How do bike companies deal with this, where almost all changes are internal? This years Madone looks almost the same as the last and drastic changes are thing like the head tube getting thicker? Maybe it helps that the time between bikes is larger so the small yearly changes add up.

    1. Brian: The “good Android phones” are precisely the reason Apple has to consider a 2 year product cycle excessive. And you’re right, the iPhone4 was/is a great phone; for most, there really isn’t a compelling reason to upgrade. Yet Apple did come out with a new phone, and that new phone is a substantial improvement in many areas over the prior phone. Improved enough that it would have had no issue whatsoever being called an iPhone5 if it had come in a different case. Twice as fast in normal tasts, 7x faster for graphics (and game playing is becoming a big thing on mobile phones), potentially improved reception with the new antenna switching scheme (if Apple has a solid patent on that and it actually works, that could be a really big usability plus… who knew, making improvement to the phone part of a phone?)… I can’t wait to get mine. Seriously.

      Bike companies are held hostage by Shimano. They are not in control of their own destiny; they have to work around Shimano’s product cycles. Nobody can afford to be late to the game with the latest DuraAce or Ultegra group. Trek operates on a three year product cycle for high-end frames, which is reasonable. Their hand was forced in 2009 with the UCI’s ruling on aero seat posts, cutting short the product cycle of the first of the “new” Madones (those with seatmasts instead of seatposts). 2010, 2011 & 2012 6-series framesets are nearly-identical, the only changes being to the fork column (making it more tolerant of ham-fisted customers & mechanics) and graphics. Oh, and the introduction in 2011 of the “SSL” version, weighing in at 2 ounces less than the standard 6. I would call that a far less significant upgrade than the iPhone4 to iPhone4s. –Mike–

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