How Is Apple's Closed Nature Fostering Innovation? - HotHardware
How Is Apple's Closed Nature Fostering Innovation?

How Is Apple's Closed Nature Fostering Innovation?

It's a weird company, that Apple. The company has nearly sunk a number of times now, and their current CEO actually left for a period and returned in order to right the ship. They had a huge grip in the education market, and then it couldn't find a market at all for years. Today, the company's portable electronics are far more popular than the computers that it builds (notice they're not called Apple Computer anymore?), and many credit the iPhone as the single phone that revolutionized the smartphone market.

Everything that Apple has developed since 2000 has led to something groundbreaking. The iPod turned the MP3 player market into an unstoppable force, the original iMac refdefined the all-in-one PC, Mac OS X gave Vista and Windows 7 something to seriously think about and the iPhone is still widely viewed as the best phone on the planet, bar none. It's easy to say that "Apple" and "innovation" go hand in hand, but what's crazy is that Apple is easily one of the most closed companies in technology today.



Apple never shows off products before they're announced, ever. Apple never shows their face at trade shows, ever. Apple won't allow their employees or partners to talk about unannounced products, ever. Apple keeps everything close to the chest, which makes you wonder how such innovation has managed to grow under such a heavy coat of suppression. Somehow, things like the App Store have encouraged developers to work through Apple's wild rules and still participate, and to this day no other App Store even comes close to offering the varying that Apple can.

Many are speculating that a Tablet of some sort is coming on Wednesday, and one can only assume that a Tablet-based App Store will also be announced. Developers will undoubtedly scramble to create new software before the device launches, but the question is "why?" We think that the secrecy actually acts to increase the buzz surrounding an Apple product, and that makes people excited to get involved once it's finally unwrapped. Still, we agree that Apple could be holding the power a bit too closely, and if someone like Google comes around with an equally exciting solution, that stock value may finally find its ceiling. Of course, Android has yet to knock Apple out, so who knows--maybe Apple's biggest fault really is their biggest benefit?


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I just can't bring myself to like the iphone. I don't see why everyone is so excited about it. Yea, some of the apps are cool... but I hate the phone itself. I'd prefer a qwerty keyboard. If they have an iphone with that.. i'd consider it. I just hate typing on a touch screen.

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I don't use an I-phone either I have been thinking about getting a Droid at upgrade time in April. However; I don't know, I am on Verizon and a lotta stuff is coming out on Verizon in the next few months. I could go Nexus one or Droid Eris there's just 2 much coming to market to make a decision yet. Plus there are rumors of the I-phone hitting Verizon to with the #4 model release rumored for Tuesday next week.

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The reason i got mine, is because it gave me everything i wanted in a phone. i'm no an app person and to be honest with you i will never be. i don't have the patience to look for apps. but what i could tell you my reason why i love my cell phone.

1 just the fact that is easy to use and is a kicker for any babies to play with

2 the fact that i could listen to my music and answer a call that for me is awesome i don't know about you but i don't like to have three thing in my hand (ipod, cell phone and steering wheel)

and lastly the freaking the design it just awesome.

I came from the BB world and don't get my wrong i have said it many times i've never been a fan of apple until now.

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I've been using Win Mobile phones since before the Iphone came out.... And i've been listening to music on my phones since before the iPhone came out lol

My Tilt has the capability to play music, but I don't use it for that.I still have an ipod and I hook it up to my car stereo for music :-)

Whatever my next phone is would like it to have a snapdragon in it. I've hearing great things about that chip.

Otherwise I might just got with a Tilt2. I love my tilt and the tilt2 looks pretty solid :-)

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I have a Tilt2 and I do like it. However, the one gripe I have about it is that switching from portrait to landscape seems to lag. Ex: If I get a msg and I flip over to pop the keyboard and reply, it just seems to hang sometimes. Sometimes I reboot it for good measure (it is a win phone after all haha) but all in all I like it a lot. Adding a full plastic case makes it a little bulky but it doesn't bother me. There is a lack of apps for it for sure. For instance, even though you can use googlemaps, there is an iphone app that gives you detailed public transport info for NY and there is nothing really close to that for the win phone. I have been lazy to flash the rom cause I absolutely detest the att background that shows up in the menu screen - however it seems once you do, some doors open up for the phone. Plus HTC has a pretty good line up in the next few months, I say wait it out a bit.

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I think some of it has something to do with the closed platform they use. I also think there auto acceptance level by some influences this in a way. When you run on a closed singular system hardware and software it affords some real advantages as to system design and therefore innovation and or new or platform specific r&D as well.

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The way I see it, the Iphone is a mediocre phone, but the best pocket PC on the market. The interface, the touchscreen and the plethora of apps available make it a great product. People who are getting the Iphone don't simply want a phone, they want a device that will make their lives easier and the Iphone fits the bill.

There are three IPhones in my family and there are times when I wish I had gotten one too. But except for the times I am traveling I rarely ever have the need for a 3G enabled pocket PC.

 

Back to the topic of the thread, I agree, there is something very occult about the way Steve Jobs keeps news under wraps. Apple has a cult-like following amongst its fans and employees.

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I agree gibbersome, but they do bring innovation. The company is weird and they do have a cult like following true. They also in many ways are innovative. Much like you were saying the I-phone is like a mini netbook really which is what a lot of people are looking for. I think the e-reader market in many ways comes from the same type of Idea as does the tablet. As I have said and you have quoted I think we will have something tablet like which does all of the above and more. As CES shows this year here they come. I don't know if they would have existed because every thing takes a step in one direction. This is true for inventors minds as well. You see a palm or newton back in the day you see a cell phone and someone says why don't they incorporate those two devices into one. Then you get an I-phone I am no technology seer but if you look back through my post for longer than a year I have said the same things on several occasions.

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Indeed, and Apple has a strong fan base which helps to get all their products off the ground. The Applemaniacs act as ambassadors to the rest of us as it were.

However, not all the innovation is successful. Remember the Cube? The Newton also flopped. And the Motorola ROKR, Apple's previous foray into the cell phone business. You can almost argue that it's when Apple tries to conform that it fails hardest.

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Apple's successes outweigh their fails by a wide margin. The fails make a small splash while the successes like the iPod and iPhone send ripples throughout the digital world. Their products show a large degree of innovation and elegant design. They just charge way too friggin' much for all of it.

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The iPhone is really pretty crappy as a phone. No matter how good it is as a pocket PC (and it is tops there), I use a phone mostly as a phone and text/pic messaging device. Those are two areas that the iPhone has always been near the bottom in quality at, though they are improving.

Then you run into the whole problem of Apple users themselves. I seriously had an Apple Cultist who works for me believe that Apple invented "App". Then she got the other Apple Cultist to support her. Both of them nearly completely computer illiterate. And they got pissed when we started asking random people walking by what App was and they all said things like 'Application' or 'a computer program'.

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InfinityzeN:

Then you run into the whole problem of Apple users themselves. I seriously had an Apple Cultist who works for me believe that Apple invented "App". Then she got the other Apple Cultist to support her. Both of them nearly completely computer illiterate. And they got pissed when we started asking random people walking by what App was and they all said things like 'Application' or 'a computer program'.

 

Lol, you should look out your window and make sure none of them followed you home. In particular listen closely for the "Apple Chord."

But I do see the advantages of owning a Mac. They're reliable, stylish and the OS runs fast, smooth and free of viruses. I recently had someone close to me convert to Mac after finally giving up on his Vista based system. I can't say I blame him.

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I don't know though. The one thing about apple that has always killed me besides the price is the big brother crap. I own a computer it is mine, therefore I should be able to run any software on it I want. However; if I owned an Apple I could only run what is approved. Plus I build PC's and have for a long time as well as working professionally on them for years. So for a company to tell me this hardware is superior etc. is BS/ Especially when it is for one thing the same as any PC hardware for that certain port expansion slot etc, except yours (an Apple user) say's apple approved. Even there heatsink's and thing's that is getting to the point of almost creepy really.

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InfinityzeN:

Then you run into the whole problem of Apple users themselves. I seriously had an Apple Cultist who works for me believe that Apple invented "App". 

Apple didn't, and doesn't even own "Apple".   The Beatles do, and they nailed Apple for a boatload of cash a few years ago to prove it.

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I may bash Apple every chance i get but they do make cool products and they are very innovative in there designs but onthe other hand i don't like the fact that i cannot build my own mac  like i can my pc.Thats part of the fun with the pc is to build your own rig with all the best parts and upgrade as time goes by but with Apple their asking an awful lot of money for a machine that is 99.9% propriatary to Apple and that suck's.The only way i would ever own one is if they started puting aftermarket hardware on the market for the enthusiest to tweak out their mac's.

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Yeah I agree caos I wonder if you can still get that MB bios chip. There was a add on you could get for a PC it plugs into the motherboard. After plugged in you can put anything you want in it and install Apple operating system it will boot as a MAC. I thought it was a great idea and you could run any hardware on it you wanted.

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I am pretty sure they lost in court 2 times against apple and were shut down though

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rapid1:
add on you could get for a PC it plugs into the motherboard

You mean the E-Fix USB Dongle? They still sell them and they work with a select list of components inside.

People that use them seem to be quite happy with them. If I didn't already have my iMac, I would probably build one of them.

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LOL! How stupid could you really be to think that Apple was the inventer of applications... wow... Marketing really did a good job on that one lol

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When an apple user tries to convince you apple created apps, tell them you know Steve jobs did it right after he created water, and walk away. If they come up later and ask you what year he did that in fire them. Because that's one of those people that comes back with a gun after performance reviews.

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Well the iPad is here, and looks promising. I would like to see what it does as well as how the PC market will reply. With so many knowing information on this there has to have been some work on something similar I would think. Although I see somewhat similar items nothing that seems to match the capabilities. I think the Hardware side of M$ needs to get busy on this. If they released something comparable on Winmo or even Android from Google it would be the PC equivalent, but if they wait that market will be swallowed by the Ipad just like the Iphone.

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Nix most of what I said on this. I am rather disappointed with the final product here. They could have done so much, but chose not to

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