They say that a little competition is good for business. It keeps companies from becoming complacent. Even Apple says they don’t mind good competition so long as competitors don’t steal the company’s intellectual property.
Competitors love Apple as competition because it saves them billions of dollars on research and development costs. Copy what Apple does, sell it for less, and you’re done. Here are five things kinda sorta mostly about Apple from last week that I found interesting.
LMFAO At Stuff
At the top of my list is something that impacts Apple indirectly, but affects a few million Android device users in a more direct way.
Samsung cut a deal with rapper Jay Z. They paid him a gazillion dollars for the rights to giveaway Jay Z’s latest album before it was released to the masses.
Coup for Samsung, right? Not so fast. The app Samsung delivered to their Galaxy smartphone users turns out to be nothing more than promotional spyware.
It only works with the latest models, grabs without asking user’s personal information, doesn’t add the songs to the user’s music library, and tracks each user’s whereabouts and more.
I’m loving me some walled garden today, folks.
Second on the list was something Apple did a long time ago when it invented the Ultrabook class of notebooks with the MacBook Air. Apple got a patent on the wedge-shaped design, which caused PC makers to alter their own designs (which, mostly copied Apple’s Macs).
Apple filed a patent application on a hybrid USB/SD port– a hybrid of the USB connector and the SD card slot. Why? Because it makes the MacBook even thinner. The iPhone’s connector was changed to the new Lightning connector for similar reasons. Thin is in.
Not only can competitors not copy Apple’s wedge design in the MacBook Air, they won’t be able to get much thinner unless they design something like Apple’s new USB/SD port.
Third, Apple is hedging bets with iWork in the iCloud. Think Pages, Numbers, and Keynote in a browser window running on pretty much any popular computing devices but with nearly full compatibility with desktop and mobile apps.
The latest beta testers are of one accord. Pages, Keynote, and Numbers in iCloud are fast and work very well. That means there’s even less need for anyone to have a device that needs Microsoft Office.
Finally, the tide is beginning to turn, and technology pundits have begun to realize that, yes, Apple innovates, but it also iterates after putting disrupting technology into the market. And, more analysis shows that Apple’s competitor’s idea of innovation has little to do with disrupting markets.
- Mac – 1984
- iMac – 1998
- iPod – 2001
- iTunes Store – 2003
- iPhone – 2007,
- MacBook Air – 2008
- App Store – 2008
- iPad – 2010
The gap from 1984 to 1998 was Apple’s dark years, prior to co-founder Steve Jobs’ return to the company. Since, then Apple has disrupted one industry after another– PC, portable music player, online music sales, smartphones, ultra portable PCs, app store, tablets.
Let’s compare that list to what Google, Samsung, or Microsoft have done to disrupt industries in the same time frame.
Google became the de facto internet search engine, funded by advertising. What else? I got nothing.