Apple in the 21st century, under the rule of CEO Tim Cook, is not the Apple of the last century, or even Apple under co-founder Steve Jobs. One of Mac360’s co-founders pointed out the obvious many years ago. Nothing improves without change.
Yet, change comes in many colors and flavors. Change can be bad. Change can be good. Change can be controlled and uncontrolled. One of the most important technology revolutions is on the horizon. What will 5G do to Apple?
My time at Mac360 is less devoted to prognostication than analysis, but I have a perspective on change. Apple under Steve Jobs changed and redefined markets. The string is long and obvious, even to customers who do not follow Apple’s day-to-day shenanigans.
The Apple II was almost as iconic back in the day as the Mac. Jobs championed Apple Stores when the world said retail was dead. Then along came iTunes and iPod and iTunes Music Store, followed by the iPhone, the App Store, and iPad; all of which redefined specific technology and media industries.
What about Apple’s revolutions under Tim Cook?
Yes, Cook has a few revolutions, too. He revolutionized Apple’s shareholder value, and filled the company’s coffers with so much cash that it’s being given away. Literally. Cook’s Apple is bigger on accessories and services than Jobs’ Apple, and each, in a way, is its own revolution.
Coming soon to a series over overhyped commercials is 5G wireless technology; another revolution.
Don’t get excited. 5G won’t be here as a wave that sweeps the world into the future as much as it will be slowly rising waters where new boats will float.
Apple is poised to be a player in 5G, of course, especially thanks to a new deal with industry giant Qualcomm to supply 5G modems in Apple devices, but where Apple has excelled in the past may or may not give the company an edge as 5G wireless technology slowly– very slowly– takes over the world.
Like it or don’t, Apple is a hardware company. iPhone, iPad, Mac, Wearables and Accessories? All hardware. Even Services is a big nothing-burger without hardware to use. What Steve Jobs did with Apple was to take risks and bet on the future. Tim Cook’s Apple seems so devoid of ideas for the future that the company gives away money. Literally.
Huawei, the Chinese government’s technology arm, may not be a well known or acceptable brand in the good old U.S. of A., but the company seems to be willing to take a few risks.
5G wireless television with an 8K display.
If that’s not an example of risk and reward and a distinct look at where the hockey puck will be, I don’t know what is. Huawei is banking on the 5G future while Apple gives away money. Literally.
Jeremy Horwitz has details where few details exist and it’s a worthy read of a company willing to take huge risks with its future to shape the future. Apple seems to have forgotten how to do that and may need a revolution of its own among executives who have guided the company since the last century.