Space Ramblings

The Decline of Apple and Steve Jobs

It’s funny really how much the perception of Apple’s success has rested with Steve Jobs, so much so that his illness, whatever it might be, seriously threatens Apple’s future. Yes Steve Jobs oversaw the revival of Apple, but mainly what he accomplished was to revive the Apple brand making it hip again, and after some frustrating efforts at expanding Apple’s desktop market share, he directed it away from computers and toward MP3 players, cell phones and other electronics. It was a smart move obviously, but not one that can’t be replicated. The people behind the iPod and the iPhone work for Apple already. The ad people who rebuilt Apple’s brand can be paid to do again. Steve Jobs brought some of it together, but he’s not nearly as vital as the buzz would have you believe. Apple will survive Steve Jobs. Whether it will hold on to its peak without him is doubtful, but it’s not too likely that it could hold on to its peak with him either. Apple’s only real success was the iTunes and iPod hat trick, the iPhone piggybacked on the iPod’s success. The App store reverses the iTunes formula. But while Apple is making money, sooner or later the mobile crunch will come, leaving Apple only a wannabe player in the mobile market. As Palm has demonstrated, in a more competitive market, it takes much less time to catch up to Apple, and it won’t be with junk like the Zune.

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