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Is this Apple's 'Perfect Storm'?
Posted: 19 January 2011

These spectacular results seem to engender a little sense of Deja vu - reminding me of the time in the early 1990s when IBM's results went from the biggest profit in business history to its biggest loss in just one year.
Just think of these forces acting around Apple's success: Job's health (even a genius does not live forever), the success of Android smart phones (outselling iPhone for the first time), the ongoing ego battle between Apple and Adobe (still no Flash support on iPad and iPhone) and concerns over what might be Apple's 'Next Big Thing' (and who might inspire it).
Watch this storm develop!

Apple announces record profits of $6bn as Steve Jobs hails 'phenomenal' sales
19 January 2011
Shares increase after Apple reports 7m iPads sold during Christmas quarter, as chief executive prepares to go on leave
Step-change thinking moves Apple to an old/new business paradigm
Dateline: 23 October 2012
Apple has not previously been known to favor opening up its software to other hardware platforms. This control obsession has seen it lose out to Microsoft ...
Doug Vining Apple is becoming more and more like the IBM they attacked in "1984".

But for me the battle of the maps is very interesting. Google Maps on the iPhone doesn't give voice guided navigation which is an obvious flaw - you should be able to ask Siri to direct you somewhere! So now Apple is giving you TomTom for free, while Android has Google maps with voice, and Windows Phone has Nokia Maps with voice which are very good, also free, with downloads for offline use. The big loser in all this is Garmin, who used to dominate personal navigation, and now is stuck with BlackBerry and their own devices. Garmin's new apps for iPhone are trying to replicate the service, but are not compatible with Garmin maps on a laptop!

If Apple's new Maps app is the equivalent of TomTom but for free, I will happily use it. I just hope Siri understands where Kyalami is!
Posted: 12 June 2012 at 11:01
Wolfgang Grulke With this latest move (see link below) Apple is continuing its efforts to build ever more firewalls around its own products. What is it about 'openness' that they don't understand? If they do not succeed in dominating the user interface, perhaps negative user reaction to such isolationist behaviour could precipitate a 'perfect storm' for Apple?
Posted: 12 June 2012 at 10:05
Fanie Oosthuysen Totally understand your problem Wolfgang, if you need flash you need flash. And if in your daily life its more important (like reading news etc) than being able to buy or rent movies, series, games and music and have the quality of apps available on the IStore and also if you do not yet have the full range (IPHone/IPod/IPad/Apple TV) to share that content with or have the integration accessories. Then thats your consumer needs, you are not yet locked-in and the galaxy tab would probably be a better fit (its small also compared to the IPad so "more portable" and you can also charge it a lot more frequently but I'm not yet sure if that would be problematic). I do however suggest that you first try out the Skyfire browser available through the App Store as it renders flash video. If it does not render you frequently used websites, then there is no point in using it for browsing those sites so go for the galaxy or wait for the RIM BB PlayBook, RIM claims it will have better battery life than galaxy and will be cheaper.
Posted: 20 January 2011 at 12:58
Wolfgang Grulke Fanie, this may not be "deal breaker" from a technical viewpoint but from this user's perspective lack of Flash support has become exactly that. When I'm surfing the news on my iPad I am sick and tired of not being able to get to video content while reading the news - I have to send email reminders to myself to look at the missing bits when I get to my ThinkPad! That's why I am selling my iPad and moving to tablet that supports what I need - the Samsung Galaxy Tab. It may not be as fashionable but it works for me.
By the way I agree 100% with your observations about sharing of content across platforms and devices.
Posted: 20 January 2011 at 12:23
Fanie Oosthuysen From a technical viewpoint, lack of flash support is not a deal breaker. Organizations are slowly trading flash support for HTML5. Microsoft has also scaled down their Silverlight drive in favor of a HTML5 strategy. And lack of Flash has little do do with an ego battle. Its all about Apple's grip over their own platform. Regardless, Apple's ability to swing content providers (not just application developers, but also record labels and artists, publishers, etc.) and integrated content provisioning for Apple TV, IPad (video, music, books, magazines), IPhone, Mac, IPod which with accessories and extensions covers even my car, will ensure that Apple is a long way of from losing momentum. Its not just about device design and innovation, it is that philosophy that held Apple back in the early 90s. But it's about content and locking users into your devices. I cannot buy a movie on my Android phone, watch it on my TV or PC or Android pad. Share the software I've bought between those devices. Or ever buy android software in most countries through the market place. There is no alternative to the Apple experience currently, and neither of the hopefuls will be able to provide the full range in the next 3-5 years.
Posted: 20 January 2011 at 11:59
Anton Musgrave As a passionate Apple junkie this is too terrible to contemplate...but sadly not an impossible scenario! Interesting times indeed and now is NOT the time for them to rest on even well earned laurels. A case study in the making?
Posted: 19 January 2011 at 15:36
Doug Vining Yes. Remember the mantra from 'Thriving on Turbulence' - the market leaders are the most vulnerable, and the easiest to displace when a Black Swan makes them irrelevant. Not that Apple isn't agile and innovative, but they may well be at their peak, and we know where the trend lies from there.
Posted: 19 January 2011 at 11:08
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