Evolution v. Innovation

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by coachingguy, Sep 13, 2013.

  1. coachingguy macrumors 6502a


    Feb 7, 2003
    The Great White, Albeit Frozen North
    So... The interwebs and Wall Street are bashing Apple's latest release(s) of the iPhone. "Steve's gone and so is the secret sauce..." Yada, Yada, Yada... This post comes from a conversation that my brother and I were having about his disappointment with the 5s... And obviously he's not alone as he sent me and email with at least a dozen scathing reviews of the 5s and 5c...

    I countered with what is left for cellular phones that isn't just Evolution, rather than Innovation?

    I see people are complaining about the form factor? What form factor would people like to see? Round? Triangular? I may be going out on a limb here, but the rectangle may just be the best shape for a cellular device.

    Screen size isn't Innovation, it's merely Evolution. And really screen size is subjective anyways... I'd argue there are just as many, or nearly so, who think that 4" is as big as they want to go as there are people saying WTH, where's the 5"+ screen?

    Screen quality? We're almost to the point where the human eye can't differentiate anymore... More clarity, more colors etc... All Evolutionary, not Innovative. Do I/we need a cell phone that has a 3D, 4K screen?

    Sound quality of the calls? Evolution.

    I recently saw a commercial for a Droid phone with dual front facing Stereo speakers? First of all, why? Are you going to go a party and run the music off of your phone? How loud do you want you speaker calls to be? So, not only will the next cubicle or table here it, but across the room? Again, Evolution, not innovation. BTW, what do these speakers do to battery life?

    Weatherproofing? Evolution, and it's not quite ready for prime time yet anyways or the all the phone case people would be really scared.

    Camera? 8 megapixel v. 41 megapixel? Apples to Pine nuts... Photographers know the difference, and besides do I really want the file sizes of my pictures to grow exponentially as they would with 41 megapixels? No. This is taking advantage of people who assume more is better and don't know better. Can camera's improve? No doubt, but again, that won't be Innovation, only Evolution...

    I could go on, but I think you get the point. Any truly Innovative idea with Cell Phones at this point will turn them into something else.

    Apple suffers from the weight of it's past, it's potential and everyones expectations. Being the best is a bitch. ;)

    I'd argue the best thing Apple could do, not only for the iPhone, but across it's line up is speed up it's releases. These yearly "Big Show/Top" releases are doing more harm than good. Especially with some many companies making Droid phones, there's another latest a greatest every few weeks. Even if it's not "GREAT", it's still got some feature that the iPhone doesn't have and won't until next fall...

    I'd argue the iPhone still carries "The Street Cred", but I'd like to believe that thats because of build quality, integration and useability of the iOS and the ease of use/integration of the iTunes store. If it wasn't THE phone, why would so many people be (apparently) upset about what it doesn't have?

    Just a few random thoughts on the subject. Fire a way, assembled.

  2. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
  3. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    I'd say the following sums up the OP's position:

    what is left for cellular phones that isn't just Evolution, rather than Innovation? ... Any truly Innovative idea with Cell Phones at this point will turn them into something else.
  4. adildacoolset macrumors 65816

    Sep 5, 2011
    Lusaka, Zambia(If you know where it is)
    I don't think you know what innovate means.

    Check the dictionary. I just means to. Ake changes to something established. Apple did that in every single iPhone release.
  5. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    Really? I'm getting definitions to the effect of "to introduce something new." Some definitions do follow that with "to make changes to something established," but that is clearly secondary to introducing something new.
  6. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

    Feb 4, 2008
    I think he's referring to the connotation the nattering nabobs of negativism throw out there with it. Obviously the fingerprint scanner and a 64-bit mobile processor are literally innovation. And not the new, stupid-person "literal."

    Ever since Steve Jobs died, people have been using his absence as an excuse to say Apple doesn't "innovate." They say it straight out of their ass as if there weren't thousands of smart people working under Steve and as if Tim Cook was some hobo brought in off the street, not the guy who Steve said, "Put him in charge when I'm gone."

    The insane thing is when I see people expecting the same "wow" factor every damn year as there was when the iPhone was unveiled. YOU CANNOT REPLICATE THAT WITH ANY OTHER IPHONE MODEL.

    What also gives fuel to the fire is the 18,000 different companies making iPhone knock-offs using the Android OS. Samsung makes a phone with a larger screen and puts NFC in it pretty much so you can bump phones on a commercial, and this is considered more "innovative" than a fingerprint scanner.

    I know.

    I pretty much sum it up as mostly a bunch of whinos who should just **** and buy their precious Samsung Galaxy phones. They complain about a lack of innovation but have no clue what it is they want aside from a larger screen, as if making something with a 5-inch display instead of 4-inch display is some sort of technological breakthrough. They'd get that 5-inch iPhone and then complain that it's either too thick, the battery life is too short or it costs too much. Yeah, bigger screen means other fires to put out.

    So basically "Apple can't innovate" is a meme, except most people are actually amused by the grumpy cat.
  7. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    At this point there is 3 other areas in which phones can be innovated into. However, depending on who views that, it can be viewed as evolution.
  8. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    Well, don't stop there, tell me what those 3 areas are. I was just summarizing what I perceive to be the OP's position, if someone else has a better argument, I'm willing to be convinced!
  9. matttye macrumors 601

    Mar 25, 2009
    Lincoln, England
    People say the same thing at every single iPhone launch. You get used to it.

    The thing about Apple is that they try to add a few truly useful features each time, rather than a mass of hit-and-hope features like certain other manufacturers.

    It may not make a big difference to other iPhones, but the fingerprint sensor is a very useful feature and will clearly improve the experience for everyone who uses it.

    Aside from that the experience of using the iPhone 5 and 5S will be largely the same. Everything else is evolutionary improvements (faster processor, better camera, dual LED flash).

    I think that's it.
  10. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    1. Car integration
    2. Intelligent Near Field Communications

    For the first one it would be awesome to have your on board computer sync to your iPhone and be able to function from your device instead of having to rely on the on board OS which is slow or clunky. True iTunes/Siri in the car. In an accident? Let your car signal distress call via your phone. Deep integration.

    We all know including NFC is nice, but using it intelligently is even better. So far, NFC is just a either for picture or contact transfers. But there is so much more that can be done. What if you can expand that for hospital usage? Carry your own medical history without carrying it in your phone. How? When you enter a hosptial Geolocation will let your iPhone understand it is in a medical center so perhaps having your history at hand can be useful. Download it and have it ready to load. Never used it and left? Delete it. Other uses? Program your car and get rid of car keys/keyfobs. We all know losing a keyfob and replacing it is very expensive ($200 worth in many cases). Home access and much more. World passport? Why not.

    Notice how I only mention 3, I leave one out since I consider that more of a personal opinion rather than a true innovative feature.
  11. adildacoolset macrumors 65816

    Sep 5, 2011
    Lusaka, Zambia(If you know where it is)
    Yes, and every iPhone has introduced a ton of new things to each iPhone. Ultimately, even though people complain hat they aren't new, they still make an impact on the entire industry.

    Look at things like Siri. A lot of android fans say that it wasn't innovative or new. But android phones eventually got google voice search and s-voice. So that made an impact. That's innovative. That follows the definition.

    In a similar fashion, I think that the fingerprint sensor will force people to scramble to compete. We may see a future that doesn't need passwords at all. And who is forcing them to compete? Apple.
  12. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    Not quite sure I follow how you envision car integration working (perhaps because I don't drive), but I do think deeper integration with not only cars, but other aspects of our lives, such as home security, remote controlling lights and appliances, using phones as keys to unlock doors, etc, are being worked on by various companies. And because they are evolving piece by piece and there are so many players involved, I think the whole process is perceived now as being evolutionary, when it is actually very innovative.

    And with NFC, Apple hasn't adopted NFC technology, but it is trying to get there by other means, such as passbook and iBeacon. I think both of these have the potential to be extremely useful -- I used passbook to get into a movie theater once, and it was very easy to use. I wish all theaters and public venues like sports would adopt passbook, we'd never have to worry about forgetting or misplacing our tickets again! But again, because rollouts of systems like these take time and are dependent on other organizations adopting them, by the time they are widespread, they'd tend to be perceived as evolutionary, rather than innovative.

    I think moments that are perceived as truly innovative are quite rare. The Wright brothers' first flight might seem to be an innovative moment, but today's planes are so much more evolved. If somebody only knew the first airplanes then were shown today's Boeings without seeing any of the intervening airplanes, they would be truly awestruck. But each iteration from the first airplane to the next would probably have seemed like a small evolution. So I think that's where we are with smartphones -- the first iPhone was the first airplane. No other smartphone is going to seem quite as innovative as that one. Until someone invents something that isn't a smartphone.
  13. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    Yes, Apple is trying to go against NFC for now, but in the end they will have to realize, it has to be done. Unless, they come up with a solution on their own that can be easily and readily deployed. NFC is almost world wide, so its much easier to adopt that.

    Taking your home security example, your NFC enabled iPhone could tell your home security system "Honey! I'm Home!" and your system disarms itself. Although you can already do that via Wi-Fi or the Internet.
  14. Cod3rror, Sep 14, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2013

    Cod3rror macrumors 68000


    Apr 18, 2010
    I agree with the OP,

    The car has been invented, the paradigm/product has been established. Even if a car flies, it's still an evolution.

    In fact I'd argue that some of the things need to stop evolving like screen resolutions and phone sizes. They are nothing but a marketing gimmicks at this point from manufacturers that look to inflate their specs sheets so the product looks more attractive to a potential customer. I reality we are at the point of diminishing returns. Do you really want a 4K screen resolution on a 5" screen? There is a reason why the iPhone 5s smokes other Android phones in gaming benchmarks, it's because they have unnecessary 1080p screens.

    As for the phone sizes, I personally find it really cool to have a incredibly powerful hardware in a small package, like the iPhone. 4" is fine IMO, even 3.5" was fine by me, I don't want a snowboard.

    However, evolution does not mean or have to be slow baby steps or playing it safe and this is in my opinion what people are complaining about and confusing with innovation and revolutions.

    Apple has to start evolving faster. They are really milking it now.

    Add waterproofing - Xperia Z1 has this and it looks very much mainstream.
    128GB option
    2GB RAM
    Wi-Fi AC
    Bluetooth aptX protocol support for high quality streaming
    microSD slot
    Sensors: Barometer / Temp Humidity / Pedometer / G sensor
    LED notification

    How about some real changes to iOS instead of just a new skin? How about:

    File system support
    USB drag and drop support
    Live icons
    Widgets in the Notification Center
    Ability to set Default apps
    Ability to Delete/Hide stock apps
    Data usage monitor

    Multitasking gestures - Zephyr - Flick up for the Springboard, Swipe up and hold for the Switcher

    The camera app has all that colour effects crap yet lacks real useful features like:

    Time/date/location imprinting
    Stabilization shot
    720p @ 60FPS recording option(I don't need 1080p)
    White balance, Exposure, Light sensitivity(ISO), Contrast, Sharpness adjustment
    Ability to view file information(EXIF) in photos

    Maps - You still can't drop more than one pin on the map and route between them or have transit routes.

    The iPhone is still very much dependant on iTunes, you cannot even delete photos from the album unless you sync them.

    Needs to prevent shut down when the phone is locked

    Delivery notification for normal SMS messages

    Snooze time configuration option for alarm, (amount of snoozes, time in between)

    Calendar events in Notification Center/Lockscreen - Configure look at head
    Calendar event badges on calendar(with an ability to adjust how far in advance you can see your events, 24hours, 7 days, 14 days, etc..)
    Birthday's in Calendar - show how old is person is turning into

    Ability to add Pictures in the Notes.app

    Safari - Tap and hold the tabs button to show closed tab history

    Smart Playlist creation on the iPhone

    Integrate Spotlight search into notification center - put it on top(above stocks)

    This is what people mean when they say they want "innovation", they don't want new, they just want more. Apple is taking it very, very slowly.

    EDIT: I also would like to correct you OP regarding the camera. Nokia 808 PureView's 41MP produces 5MP images at the end, which is smaller than Apple's 8MP. Nokia uses oversampling technology, which combines multiple pixels into one, so that 41MP is compressed into a super detailed, noise free 5MP image.
  15. the8thark macrumors 68040


    Apr 18, 2011
    Phil Schiller: "Can't innovate my ass".

    That pretty much sums it all up.
  16. Tammster macrumors 6502


    Jun 23, 2010
    S Florida USA
    I think that what most people don't get is that historically, most of Apple's "revolutionary" ideas don't seem revolutionary at first and, maybe they're not. It's the vision for the future of that idea that what matters in the long run. Siri certainly was far from perfect when it was first introduced, but the concept is extremely visionary and 5 and 10 years from now it will be how everyone uses their devices. We'll all remember when phones first started using it.

    It might be just my opinion, but the "revolutionary" Apple products/features almost never seem that way at first (all of them, iPod, iPhones, iPad, iPad mini, and all of the features they have) but looking back it's easy to recognize.

    I think in the future we'll all look back on the fingerprint scanner (which may or may not work great the first few models) and be amazed that we ever had to actually enter in a password. Think about it, in 20 years will any device need an actual password??? This is just the beginning guys. Some will recognize it and many will make fun of it and complain about it. I believe that if we're going to look back on this release in 5 years and remember where it all started, it is a true innovation.
  17. zbarvian macrumors 68010

    Jul 23, 2011
    I think that Apple is still innovating, but it's easy to forget since the last groundbreaking product released was the iPad in 2010. However, it's fallacious to say that there's no room for revolution in smartphones. What about a new battery chemistry that can go for a week without a charge and be charged in a tenth of the time? Or an unbreakable chassis and screen?

    And those are only traditional areas of focus. I like to believe that the people getting paid have a much wider creative scope than us forumers.
  18. tymaster50 macrumors 68030


    Oct 3, 2012
    New Jersey
  19. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    Are you misquoting him on purpose? He said "Can't innovate MORE, my ass."

    And yet, if Apple ever did any of the things you listed, people would say, "That's not new! They've been around for ages. Where's the innovation?"
  20. coachingguy thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Feb 7, 2003
    The Great White, Albeit Frozen North
    I believe the most of you got my point. I purposely didn't use Revolutionary because the negative reviews I've been sent or have read consistently commented on lack of innovation, rather than revolution.

    Is the iPhone 5s better than any previous iPhone, yes. Are the improvements Revolutionary or Innovative compared to the next step forward IE: Evolutionary?

    Having just watched the "Star Trek: Into Darkness" DVD, I found it ironic/funny that the communicators were basically Motorola Star Tac Flip Phones... ;)

    When you watch the Cell Phone commercials or go browsing the Cell Phone section at your local retailer, do you see anything that makes you stop and go "Hmmm... or A-Ha!"? The phones are all rectangular, most of them are plastic or a composite of some time. Screen size varies, but nothing that shocks you. Each is trying to see you on a specific trait that it has that the others don't. But you still recognize them as cell phones.

    While the Blackberry had been out as well as PDA's, when Apple released the first iPhone, that first one was a Paradigm shift/Revolutionary, a true "A-Ha!" moment. And I paid $599 cash for it unsubsidized when it came out, and obviously I was not alone.

    Personally, I like the new iPhone 5s, but my current iPhone 5 works great for what I want it to do, and while I'd like some of those upgrades IE the camera and faster processor, I'm fine waiting til the 6, when my contract is up. The improvements on the iPhone 5s are noticeable and helpful, and isn't what we should expect?

    I'd like to address Schiller's comment that was brought up multiple times, when referencing the new Powermac... That is a completely new design in both look and function/ability, in effect Revolutionary/Innovative... And yet, having read (too) many of the comments on this site, many people are still pissed... :D

    I'm tempted to buy one when it comes out because it is Revolutionary/Innovative and waaaaaay more machine than I'd need.

    Anyhow, thanks for reading and sharing. I leave you with one last question.

    So, when does the iPhone 6 come and what will it have that I can't live without?

  21. the8thark macrumors 68040


    Apr 18, 2011
    'Can't innovate anymore, my ass."
    That is the exact quote.

    Video of it is here

    If you want to be picky, that is totally fine, just best to get it right I'd say.
  22. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    Thanks for the correction, but your original quote completely left out the "anymore," which makes it mean the exact opposite of what Schiller said.
  23. GoSh4rks macrumors 6502

    Sep 14, 2012
    Having a 64 bit mobile processors in the 5s is in no way innovative. Anybody that knows about about why 64 bit was necessary on desktops could see 64 bit mobile processors coming from a mile away. It was just a matter of when and who.
  24. billycuth macrumors 6502a

    Jul 31, 2010
    "sent from my iPhone"
  25. adildacoolset macrumors 65816

    Sep 5, 2011
    Lusaka, Zambia(If you know where it is)
    And how exactly is this relevant?

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