Executive Strategy

Apple, Same Story, Dane Flanigan

Dane Flanigan Apple.jpg

Apple – Have we Heard this Story Before?

When I was a first grader there were two computers in the classroom, both were Apples. It was the machine I grew up on; the sound of an Apple computer turning on still rings in my ears. Everyone, everywhere knew about these computers as they were branded the learning machine. When Steve Jobs was fired from Apple the music stopped and Apple was no longer the computer.

In the early 2000’s I remember hearing the software engineersfrom Skytel tell the Blackberry technology team that people only want to send short messages. The rebuttal from Blackberry was that people also want to read their emails. As Skytel fell and Blackberry grew they branded themselves as the new Palm for business PDA - phone/messaging/email. It transcended business because the mobile office was no longer tied to a laptop or computer.

Blackberry had a challenging time, changing from being just a professional device.  With Steve Jobs return to Apple he combined the Walkman with the PDA and a phone to create the iPhone. Again, we had a jump in technology and entertainment was available to us 24/7 as well as our office.

Another leap recently occurred with the Amazon Echo. It’s voice response speaker system is based on many of the principals as Siri. The Echo is not mobile but the technology may be something we can adapt to other parts of hardware in our lives.

Dane Flanigan Iphone.jpg

So where does that leave us with Apple? The new iPhone now rivals the price of our once powerful laptops, is that because the technology is so advanced or is there a need to prove a stock price to shareholders… . I would be naive to think this speaker in my kitchen will take over the world or that my watch is powerful enough to run multiple programs but the emergence of more nanotechnology should push us forward to creating smaller more powerful devices.

The question of the ages that will may be answered in the next decade is if Apple is a lifestyle company similar to my computer in the first grade?