Is there any chance Apple will innovate again?

theatremusician

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
91
132
It seems Apple post Jobs is an evolutionary company rather than a revolutionary company. Is there any one working at Apple now that can make Apple what it was (or better)? Ives perhaps?
 
Nov 28, 2010
22,670
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What makes you think, they do not innovate? Do the hundred of granted patents, which indicate inventions and innovation, not count? Or do you need something flashy in the metal to count that as innovation?
Have you looked at any of the past dozens of threads with similar agenda?
 

McGiord

macrumors 601
Oct 5, 2003
4,533
287
Dark Castle
Please explain your definition of innovation.

I personally think that the announcements made in WWDC give us some ideas of how Apple is aiming to open their development tools and enabling the proliferation of software and hardware innovation by internal and external developers.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,384
32,995
Boston
Is there any one working at Apple now that can make Apple what it was (or better)? Ives perhaps?
You mean something like a completely redesigned Mac Pro that is revolutionary design - nah that will never happen ;)
nmp.png

Or have your Mac make a call using your cell phone, or swipe a document form your iPhone/iPad that can be edited on your Mac. You're right, there's no innovation occurring.

At one point, I was concerned about such things as well, but seeing the new Mac Pro, and the direction apple has taken, shows some pretty amazing product and technology.
 

SandboxGeneral

Moderator emeritus
Sep 8, 2010
26,063
9,246
Detroit
It seems Apple post Jobs is an evolutionary company rather than a revolutionary company. Is there any one working at Apple now that can make Apple what it was (or better)? Ives perhaps?
This is a very subjective thing to look at. Everyone's idea of 'revolutionary' is different and what one person thinks is revolutionary, another person doesn't.

Most everything, including Apple, is evolutionary and not revolutionary. The revolutionary stuff doesn't come everyday. The iPhone was, arguably, a revolutionary product that redefined the entire cell phone market space.

My opinion of revolutionary is something like the iPhone which turned the status quo upside down and changed the world and how we do things.

So what is your opinion of what is revolutionary? And before you get down on Apple or any other person/company, consider how difficult it is to create something, such as the iPhone, that can change an industry and a worldwide society and realize that these things don't happen all the time.
 

Felasco

Guest
Oct 19, 2012
372
2
Revolutionary would be products and services which help users break their addictions to the digital realm, and refocus their attention on the real world.

Here's an example: http://selfcontrolapp.com/

The era of manic internet and device buzz will sooner or later come to an end, as all things do. I don't know when, but am confident the pendulum will eventually swing, because it always does.

The net and devices will always be with us, but the relationship we have with them will become ever more like our relationship with TV. It's there, but we don't care about it that much.

Consider Google and their driverless cars. It's still technology, but it's not net and device related. Revolutionary would be Apple shifting it's focus to technology that will be behind the scenes of our everyday life, and not just more little gadgets you hold in your hand and go Wow!
 

turtle777

macrumors 6502a
Apr 30, 2004
682
16
I think Apple would like nothing more than to revolutionize the TV business.

And I believe they are working hard on it.

However, after what happened to the music industry, the movie and TV network industry has dug in their heels and is not willing to work with Apple.

I don't think it's Apple's fault that this is going so slowly.

-t
 

snberk103

macrumors 603
Oct 22, 2007
5,503
87
An Island in the Salish Sea
It seems Apple post Jobs is an evolutionary company rather than a revolutionary company. Is there any one working at Apple now that can make Apple what it was (or better)? Ives perhaps?
Keep in mind that Apple was in on the ground floor and part of a fundamental technological revolution. Now that the basic tools for that revolution have been invented, all that's left is to fine-tune and improve them. In that sense, Apple is still very much at the forefront. I think there are many companies that are now asking themselves "How would Apple do this?" and very often come very close to or even nearly duplicate something that Apple would have created. In that sense Apple is still an leading influence.

But for Apple to be as 'revolutionary' as it is remembered for … it would have to enter a technology sector that is still in its infancy. I have no idea what that be…

All imho only of course...
 

rdas7

macrumors regular
Nov 17, 2002
165
22
London, England
It seems Apple post Jobs is an evolutionary company rather than a revolutionary company. Is there any one working at Apple now that can make Apple what it was (or better)? Ives perhaps?
Your observation is absolutely impeccable, congratulations. After what was announced at WWDC 2014 it's clear that Jony Ive is the only individual at the company of thousands capable of innovation. Sadly Apple's finest days are behind them, as the stock price reflects. If only it could return to its former glory.
 

velocityg4

macrumors 601
Dec 19, 2004
4,882
1,429
Georgia
Apple has never really been revolutionary. For the most part they take existing products and transform them into something desirable and marketable to the general populace. Take the iPhone, there were already plenty of smartphones on the market but they were clunky and hard to use. They transformed it into something most people could see themselves using. Just as there were desktops before the Apple, the GUI existed before the Mac/Lisa, and tablets were around before the iPad.
 

Kissaragi

macrumors 68020
Nov 16, 2006
2,337
365
I always wonder what some people actually want to satisfy their need for "innovation"?

They consistently push out some of the best electronic products and software in the world, what more do you want!?
 

aristobrat

macrumors G5
Oct 14, 2005
12,260
1,352
It seems Apple post Jobs is an evolutionary company rather than a revolutionary company. Is there any one working at Apple now that can make Apple what it was (or better)? Ives perhaps?
Have you read this take? It's not directly about innovation but IMO it speaks to how Apple has recently been pulling off things at a scale that's Jobs Apple never could.

http://daringfireball.net/2014/06/only_apple
 

Renzatic

Suspended
I really agree with Gruber's take on this. I'd go so far as to say that I sincerely believe that Cook is a far better CEO than Jobs.
Wow, I actually totally agree with Gruber for once. For all the flak the guy takes, the only place where I believe Tim Cook pales in comparison to Steve Jobs is in showmanship. And while stage presence is a nice thing to have, it's not exactly what I'd call a must-have skill for a CEO. When it comes to actually running a company, it seems that Tim Cook is doing a much, much better at job of it.

Apple's bigger and more appealing than they've ever been. Jobs does deserve a ton of credit for this, of course, but while he's always been good at creating a stir and shaking things up, he's never really been able to carry that momentum forward for any length of time. Apple has always been too slow to capitalize and build upon their own good ideas past that initial unveiling, allowing the competition to eventually catch up, and surpass them. They weren't that competitive of a company, and they've kinda suffered because of it. They were more a boutique computer shop that happened to make billions in their own little niche than they were the head of an industry.

Under Cook, Apple has become a much more widely spread consumer focused company without having to sacrifice anything to get there. He's been able to harness that initial burst of momentum and carry it forward in ways Jobs was never able to. Granted, Apple under Cook is a little less likely to unveil that Next Big Thing, but big industry shaking products like the iPhone and iPad only come around once every decade or two, if even that. Beyond that one downside, you're far more likely to be happy living in an all Apple environment for a longer period of time, and you don't feel like you have to sacrifice some things to continue enjoying that quality.

Apple is a much better company overall, and they've got a lot more to offer these days than they ever did under Jobs.
 

Rogifan

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
21,172
25,318
Wow, I actually totally agree with Gruber for once. For all the flak the guy takes, the only place where I believe Tim Cook pales in comparison to Steve Jobs is in showmanship. And while stage presence is a nice thing to have, it's not exactly what I'd call a must-have skill for a CEO. When it comes to actually running a company, it seems that Tim Cook is doing a much, much better at job of it.

Apple's bigger and more appealing than they've ever been. Jobs does deserve a ton of credit for this, of course, but while he's always been good at creating a stir and shaking things up, he's never really been able to carry that momentum forward for any length of time. Apple has always been too slow to capitalize and build upon their own good ideas past that initial unveiling, allowing the competition to eventually catch up, and surpass them. They weren't that competitive of a company, and they've kinda suffered because of it. They were more a boutique computer shop that happened to make billions in their own little niche than they were the head of an industry.

Under Cook, Apple has become a much more widely spread consumer focused company without having to sacrifice anything to get there. He's been able to harness that initial burst of momentum and carry it forward in ways Jobs was never able to. Granted, Apple under Cook is a little less likely to unveil that Next Big Thing, but big industry shaking products like the iPhone and iPad only come around once every decade or two, if even that. Beyond that one downside, you're far more likely to be happy living in an all Apple environment for a longer period of time, and you don't feel like you have to sacrifice some things to continue enjoying that quality.

Apple is a much better company overall, and they've got a lot more to offer these days than they ever did under Jobs.
Yep. And I think there are things Apple announced at WWDC that Jobs might not have approved. Also, Steve wasn't always right about things. Case in point iPad mini:

http://www.ndtv.com/article/world/tim-cook-making-apple-his-own-541252
That doesn't mean Cook is uninvolved in product decisions. Since he took over, the company has released a number of upgrades, including a smaller tablet, the iPad Mini. Cook "thought the world would love a smaller and less expensive tablet," said Robert A. Iger, the chief executive of Disney and a member of Apple's board. It was a product that Jobs thought did not have a market, he said.
 

smoledman

macrumors 68000
Oct 17, 2011
1,912
314
When has Apple ever stopped innovating since Jobs came back? The real question is when will Microsoft/Samsung/Google ever innovate?
 

theluggage

macrumors 601
Jul 29, 2011
4,540
3,340
It seems Apple post Jobs is an evolutionary company rather than a revolutionary company.

They've always been evolutionary.

They didn't invent the personal computer.
They didn't invent the mouse/GUI.
They didn't invent the laser printer.
They didn't invent networking.
They didn't invent the laptop*
They didn't invent USB
They didn't un-invent the floppy drive
They didn't invent the small-form-factor computer
They didn't invent the MP3 player
They didn't invent the online music store
They didn't invent the smartphone or the tablet computer**.
They didn't invent laptops with > 1080p screens
They didn't invent the solid-state drive

...but Apple products played a major role in popularising these things by doing them well and marketing them well. That's part of innovation.

Their next innovation will come from something that's already out there but hasn't been very well realised or properly marketed. They might do it with the iWatch, they might do it with online TV, they might do it with home automation.

* The Powerbook 100 was the first popular laptop to adopt the modern design with the set-back keyboard and pointing device in the middle of the 'wrist rest'.

** Ironically, the Newton has a stronger claim to being the first tablet computer (and the progenitor for the 'smart' bit of pre-iPhone smartphones) - and that was Scully's baby, which Jobs killed. I think there were pre-Newton attempts at tablets, though.
 

Shrink

macrumors G3
Feb 26, 2011
8,931
1,606
New England, USA
They've always been evolutionary.

They didn't invent the personal computer.
They didn't invent the mouse/GUI.
They didn't invent the laser printer.
They didn't invent networking.
They didn't invent the laptop*
They didn't invent USB
They didn't un-invent the floppy drive
They didn't invent the small-form-factor computer
They didn't invent the MP3 player
They didn't invent the online music store
They didn't invent the smartphone or the tablet computer**.
They didn't invent laptops with > 1080p screens
They didn't invent the solid-state drive

...but Apple products played a major role in popularising these things by doing them well and marketing them well. That's part of innovation.

Their next innovation will come from something that's already out there but hasn't been very well realised or properly marketed. They might do it with the iWatch, they might do it with online TV, they might do it with home automation.

* The Powerbook 100 was the first popular laptop to adopt the modern design with the set-back keyboard and pointing device in the middle of the 'wrist rest'.

** Ironically, the Newton has a stronger claim to being the first tablet computer (and the progenitor for the 'smart' bit of pre-iPhone smartphones) - and that was Scully's baby, which Jobs killed. I think there were pre-Newton attempts at tablets, though.
I'm sorry, but it is not permissible to point out that Apple, under Saint Steve, was not the greatest and most revolutionary innovator since the discovery of fire and the invention of the wheel!

Please bear this in mind in all future posting!:mad:



:rolleyes: ;)
 

snberk103

macrumors 603
Oct 22, 2007
5,503
87
An Island in the Salish Sea
Apple has never really been revolutionary. For the most part they take existing products and transform them into something desirable and marketable to the general populace. ....
I think it would useful to define 'revolutionary' vs 'evolutionary'. By the standard above, I could argue that the American Revolution was simply evolutionary. The concepts the US Republic were founded on were largely based on the ideas of freedom espoused by the French and some British thinkers. The constitution borrowed heavily from the Iroquois Confederacy, etc etc. There wasn't anything 'invented' by the American founding fathers so much as they took a bunch of ideas from elsewhere, combined them, and made them work better.

Yet I think most people would agree that it was a Revolution.

By that standard... taking a bunch of ideas from several others - and combining them to make the work better than... I think Apple has on occasion revolutionized aspects of the industry.

I believe you don't necessary need to be the inventor of the concept that that changes society. You just have to be the entity that causes it to be so widely adopted it changes people's lives.
 

SwiftLives

macrumors 65816
Dec 7, 2001
1,338
240
Charleston, SC
Futhermore - there is innovation in evolution.

Can anyone honestly tell me that there has been no innovation in the iPhone since it debuted in 2007?
 

Naimfan

Suspended
Jan 15, 2003
4,669
2,010
No, Apple has lost the plot. :rolleyes:

It's produced three iconic products that changed not only the industry, but society at large.

And for those who don't agree that Apple "invented" the Portable digital music player, for example, Apple did invent the first music player and ecosystem that people could buy that actually worked - and the sales showed it.
 

Armen

macrumors 604
Apr 30, 2013
7,375
2,249
Los Angeles
It seems Apple post Jobs is an evolutionary company rather than a revolutionary company. Is there any one working at Apple now that can make Apple what it was (or better)? Ives perhaps?
Innovation is the process of introducing a newer and better way of doing something.

iPhone 5S Fingerprint scanner is just that. Not only is it more secure but is a more convenient way for a user to unlock their phone.

The entire "Hand-off" functionality of iOS 8 and Mac OS 10.10 Yosemite is also innovation. A more convenient and easier way to pass your work from one device to another without the need for 3rd party solutions.
 

Renzatic

Suspended
I think we obsess over innovation and who did what first way too much. Personally, I think everyone should go by my criteria, which is:

-Is this new feature cool?

Yes.

-Cool! \:D/

...or if said cool feature arrives on another platform:

-Does this feature that was previously considered cool elsewhere work just as well and has a tendency to be just as cool here?

Yes.

-cool! \:D/

Life is so much easier this way. You don't have to troll through wikipedia and various tech articles looking for who did what first to win an argument on the internet against some random person who's saying something is stupid cuz it's TOTALLY A STOLEN TECHNOLOGY!
 
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