iPhone generates over 63% of all Apple revenues. Did Microsoft Windows ever account for 63% total revenues? Microsoft Office?
So, yes, it’s obvious to think that iPhone will be disrupted as thoroughly as Windows — just as it’s obvious to think it will probably take 1.5 generations for this to happen, and when it finally does, the iPhone, like Windows, will continue to bring in billions in profits.
But what if this is the wrong way to look at it.
What if instead of thinking it’s simply not possible for Apple to replicate the success of iPhone, what if Apple is simply no longer good enough? What if Apple is already in caretaker mode?
Think about it.
Since iPhone — launched way way back in 2007 — what has Apple done?
Yes, the iPad. Steve’s last product. And since his death, iPad has gone from high-growth to no-growth to flailing. How is this even possible? iPad is a *potentially* revolutionary device. Anyone — toddler, senior, teen, your mom — can pick it up and instantly play, surf, watch, read. It’s intuitive, accessible, light, possibly the perfect personal computer form factor.
Yet, since Steve’s death, Apple seems unable to figure out how to use or market or improve iPad. Since Steve’s death, the best thing Apple’s done for iPad has been a couple press announcements with IBM and Cisco that have resulted in ZERO.
In its 8 years, iPhone has generated HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS OF AMERICAN DOLLARS IN PROFIT. What has Apple done with this money?
iPad has floundered.
Apple Music is an embarrassment.
Apple Watch is a stunning failure — to all of planet Earth excepting those who make their living promoting Apple.
iOS 7? That was the big change, and it was shite.
Touch ID? Great stuff. Bought technology.
Was it all Steve?
No. But it was a great deal Steve. It was also a great deal Scott Forstall, whom Tim Cook (allegedly) fired. It was also the very capable Jon Rubenstein and Tony Fadell, both of whom helped lay the groundwork for iPhone. It was Andy Grignon and Greg Christie and a select few extraordinarily talented people who together brought iPhone to life, just as they did with the revolutionary iPod. All under Steve’s watchful rage.
And now they are all gone.
Is there no one great left at Apple?
Is there no crazy one left at Apple who can create a truly revolutionary product — not an expensive bauble like Watch, or a me-too means-nothing service like Apple Music — that once again changes the world?
Are there no pirates at all at Apple anymore? Has the company really become your father’s Whole Foods? Is craziness or rebellion tolerated in the slightest? Are square pegs weeded out at an Apple Inc that clearly now prefers the Angela Ahrendts upscale to the Steve Woz down home?
Does Apple even have any disruptive arrows left in its quiver? Or is it now just all that gold?
Post recommended by John Kneeland