On Apple’s Continued Slide

March 1, 2013

So Apple had a shareholder’s meeting and since then the stock has dropped once again, this time to $430.

Personally, it’s understandable. Basically Apple absolutely has to release a new, innovative product this year. It’s all about building the best products. Doing so would do a lot to prove they still have what it takes post-Jobs. Instead what we get is the the same line about having great stuff in the works, everything is fine, we’re looking at new stuff. Yeah, that’s what was said last year, and pretty much everything in 2012 was iterative. Meanwhile, the iPhone is no longer clearly a generation ahead of Android, and the competitors are catching up.

Maybe I’m starting to wonder about Cook himself. Yes, he’s a stellar operations guy but maybe he’s just too nice – lacking that “dick factor.” Like take Sergey Brin’s recent snark while hyping Google Glass – that smartphones are “emasculating.” You may disagree, but note that Steve Jobs was never one to hold back the insults.

Now I am not personally suggesting Cook should be replaced as CEO, but I can guarantee that if Apple stock continues its slide, others will not hesitate to do so.

Anyhow… it’s time for some new Apple products. Everything else will fall into place if we get something bold and new. And ideally makes other people’s products look like crap.

Comments

  1. Joe Cieplinski says:

    Wow, I coulnd’t agree with you any less.

    Apple has to release an innovative new product this year? Why? Who else is going to?

    Who exactly is going to take Apple’s momentum away from it if it takes another year or two before the “next big thing.” Google glasses? You have to be kidding me. Nerdy to the extreme at best. Outright creepy at worst. No one wants to be a walking data collection machine for Google. And more importantly, none of their friends want them to, either.

    Sergei Brin’s “emasculating” comment was sexist, elitist, and downright stupid. Is there anyone on the planet right now who thinks having a cell phone isn’t “manly?”

    There’s bold, and then there’s hurting your cause. If I were Google’s PR director, I’d keep Brin away from the microphone.

    Jobs insulted individuals in the game who usually deserved it. Gates, Dell, Amelio. He didn’t blanket insult his own customers.

    It was six years between the iPod and the iPhone. Apple did just fine kicking the crap out of everyone else in the meantime. They’re doing the same now. Microsoft is on its way to completely exiting the consumer space. Samsung is about a year away from ditching Android for its own operating system, which will leave Google scrambling for a product to sell on its own. (Thus the push for Glass, and the rumored retail stores.) But Google has no idea how to sell to consumers, so that will go nowhere.

    You think sometime THIS year, people are going to stop buying tablets and rush out to buy $500 non-perscription glasses so they can read their Twitter streams while walking down the street?

    Apple has enough cash on hand to stop selling products today and still be operating ten years from now. There’s absolutely no reason to rush any new product to market until it’s ready. The worst thing Cook could do is fall prey to these suggestions that he’s “no Steve Jobs” and that he’d better do something spectactular now, or else. Screw that. Take your time, release the thing when it’s ready. In the meantime, iterate, iterate, iterate on what you already have.

    If Jobs hadn’t been dying, my guess is that the iPad would have been released a few years later than it was. And it probably would have been in the mini’s form factor. That bold new product was a few years earlier than the usual pattern of 7-10 years between big leaps. And the first iPad was underpowered and heavy as a result.

    Apple may not be making Wall Street happy, but Apple has never cared about that. They do what they do, on their own timeline. And they do just fine.

    • So you’re saying you don’t want Apple to release anything new or innovative this year? What alternate universe have we entered?

      You know I’m not about to tear up my Apple fanboy card, but I really, honestly think Apple has slipped over the last year. It’s mostly because their competitors have finally decided to shamelessly copy Apple’s modus operandi, and while they can’t copy everything, they can do a half-assed job enough so that those who can’t afford Apple’s products can make do with something similar. Once it was Microsoft, now it’s Google / Samsung.

      For the first time in as long as I can remember, a friend asked about buying the iPhone 5 vs. the free 4, or an Android phone, and I couldn’t with a straight face say the iPhone 5 was the best smartphone. So the iPhone 5 is a little faster and it has an extra row of icons. I won’t blame him if he goes with some Android / Samsung thing.

      I believe Google Glasses (and that Retina ChromeBook) is ridiculous, but my point was that Brin has no problems dissing the competition. I really hope internal to Apple is still working on products, saying “this sucks, this isn’t good enough,” because I can’t imagine the nice, polite Tim Cook being that guy.

      Sure you and I know that Apple’s modus operandi is to work on stuff in secret and only release it when it’s ready. But unfortunately, with the stock price continuing to drop, the outside pressure is only going to get more distracting. Apple lives and dies by products. Focus on awesome products saved the company when Jobs returned, and it’ll get them through any rough patches today.

      I really hope Apple releases something to get excited about once again, soon. The perfect iPad (Retina Display + light enough to hold with one hand). iPhone 5S/6. Refreshed Mac Pro. Ive-influenced iOS / OS X. And maybe iWatch / Apps for Apple TV.