Blog Archives

Taking the NeXT Step Starts With Saying ‘Hello’ in a New, Reassuring Way

Since his death on October 5, 2011, Steve Jobs has remained a beloved figure in Silicon Valley and comparable tech and innovation hubs around the world. His story — professional and personal — left a John Hancock-sized signature on the modern world’s ever-changing realization of the American Dream.

The technological legacy of Mr. Jobs, if required to be simplified in an industry defined by complication, was his gift for welcoming people into his vision of us connected and empowered through our own individualism. And his vision was first a revolutionary kind of personal computer (Macintosh), which evolved into a revolutionary personal music player (iPod) to a revolutionary phone (iPhone) and so on. Mr. Jobs knew that in order for people to buy into his vision — literally and figuratively — he would need his technological innovations to say something this evolving tech had never said before — literally and figuratively:

Hello.

The following video clip is from the beginning of the critically-acclaimed film ‘Steve Jobs’ directed by Oscar-winner Danny Boyle and starring Michael Fassbender and Oscar-winner Kate Winslet that recreates the morning-of struggle to fix a malfunctioning Macintosh computer before its big reveal to the world in 1984. The source material for this 2015 movie was based on the critically-acclaimed and biographical book Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.

(FYI – There is one f-word spoken in the following video clip)

Now watch the real-life Macintosh reveal by the real Steve Jobs from 1984.

Why write a blog post about this Steve Jobs presentation from 35 years ago?

As Silicon Valley giants (cough cough Facebook) continue to face increasingly serious questions about its “supposed” commitment to privacy concerning user data, which most of us access through Apple product(s), it’s important to remember — for all of us — why we were so excited to welcome groundbreaking personal technology into our homes and lives more than three decades ago. These devices have transformed us for better and for worse to varying degrees. Jimmy’s Daily Planet has covered this subject matter and specifically how Apple CEO Tim Cook has targeted privacy and transparency as a cornerstone of his tenure leading the company. Mr. Cook’s privacy priority is admirable in this day and age for such a major, transformative player to take a reassuring stand in an industry with social media companies that are actively being confronted with user data issues.

How can tech giants return to the days of the mid-1980s shown above that were filled with optimism about the future by plugging into personal technology?

Like when Steve Jobs’ NeXT company failed spectacularly after getting fired by Apple’s board in 1985 in part because of the original Macintosh computer’s failure in the market, tech giants will likely stumble for a few years before righting the ship. But let’s remember that Steve Jobs ultimately rebounded for a comeback of a lifetime that came (after) NeXT. Mark Zuckerberg is not Steve Jobs, but he better take inspiration from him quickly to find a resolution in the same vein as Mr. Jobs with the same success and consumer support. The hope is the solution to the aforementioned problem will arrive sooner rather than later, but we’ll just have to wait and see on this critical societal concern.

For now, the public should be looking at personal technology and its apps with the excitable possibilities of Apple’s “hello” circa 1984 instead of a particular social media giant causing public concern with “goodbye personal privacy and security?” circa, well, today.

P.S. Facebook launching a cryptocurrency called Libra? Try addressing user privacy concerns first. 

X Marks the (To Be) Bought?

Have you ever seen a shinier apple Apple in your life?

Whoa!

In a phrase, the iPhone X looks, “insanely great.”

Apple’s major product advancements yesterday, most notably its iPhone X (not the letter, but the number) ended with a surprising bang. And, in doing so, with a rather curious statement. At around $1,000 (monthly payments are available) for the iPhone X, Apple is celebrating its 10th iPhone anniversary with a serious question of not what the phone can do (seems incredible), but rather who they envision paying for this phone?

Next month and, equally important, in the years and many subsequent models to follow.

A $1,000 floor, not ceiling, is a gutsy price (although, give ’em that its a simplistic price tag, in quintessential Apple style) to determine if an Apple smartphone will be affordable. Akin to high-definition TVs with all the bells and whistles (in some cases, literally), too high of a starting price could, well, price out major portions of its valued market. Will that hurt its profit margin? Who knows. But, it might damage something the tech giant holds just as dear as a defining part of its amazingly successful brand…

Part of the legacy of the late Steve Jobs is that he put/led his team’s effort to put 1,000, 10,000 and x number of songs in our pockets, along with a smartphone that’s literally a handheld supercomputer for each of us to define ourselves. Interestingly, yesterday’s exciting presentation (new iPhones, Apple Watches, etc.) took place center stage in the new Steve Jobs Theater at Apple’s new spaceship campus. However, what would Steve Jobs say about the $1,000 price tag?

Hmmm…

How many of Apple’s x -umber of consumers will say the iPhone X is insanely great?

How many of Apple’s x-number of consumers will say the price of the iPhone X is insane…great?

Is Tech Navigating a Roundabout Future?

Similar to Clark W. Griswold, the potential technological roundabout ahead may not have the easiest exit strategy. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing is still in the TBD phase.

Literally.

But it’s intriguing nonetheless.

The innovative new headquarters for Apple, Inc. (at least there’s still some form of innovation still happening there) is receiving its finishing polishes as I write this sentence and as you are reading this awesomely intriguing sentence. Many have labeled the gigantic circular design as “space-like.” Actually, there’s some credence to that description. Recall the circular, clocklike spaceship in 2014 science-fiction epic Interstellar.

The sleek design and environmentally sustainable compound campus will likely serve as a model for future buildings in myriad industries (possibly including schools?), business mentalities (hopefully, not like the 2017 big brother film The Circle) and, brace yourself…

as a future handheld device?

Rumors surrounding any Steve Jobs-like inventions have been lacking under the Tim Cook era. Apple, for lack of a better word, has been grounded in recent years. Ironic that the new Apple HQ looks like a spaceship, right?

Was that deliberate?

Is it possible that Mr. Cook has been cooking up (had to) a new wave of Apple products right underneath our noses? My random Tuesday, May 16th hypothesis is that Apple might soon be releasing a product or line of new products that utilize the circular structure seen in the video above showcasing Apple’s new HQ in the near future. This is not to say that the next iPhone will be circular, but that some brand new product or series of products just may capitalize on the power of circular motion. Or that a new revolutionary feature in Apple’s products will take on a prominently round shape.

Why not? The symmetry between Apple’s daily lifestyle for its employees at the circular spaceship would be perfectly synched with the gadgets of its tech consumers spread around the globe. Plus, as Apple’s competitors are focused on the rectangular, square-like shapes for its devices, a circular product of some sort would stylistically one-up its rivals.

As they say, you can’t fit a round peg into a square hole.

Or vice-versa.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, could be Apple’s next insanely great competitive advantage.

iPad Before iPhone Except After (Fore)seeing the Future

Wednesday is the perfect day for wisdom.

And random wisdom is the best.

The serendipitous moments that have generated inspirational ideas are some of my favorites. So much of life is unknown day-to-day and these instances of fortuity are proof of the boundless world we live in that can change for the better in a heartbeat. The trajectory of planned events can suddenly (and so frequently) take an amazing detour without warning. Without diving too deep into the psychological dynamic of unforeseen tangents, please click on the video below that features the late Steve Jobs revealing a secret of his initial business plan for a revolutionary product (for another revolutionary product, mind you) because of his gut decision to follow an inspirational moment during a developmental cycle that took him off his predetermined innovative path.

Embracing an inspirational aha moment (however small) can change your life, your business and, in some cases, possibly even the world.

While we may never definitively know if the chicken or the egg came first, we do know why the iPhone came before the iPad. And the answer is insanely great.