Thursday, June 28, 2007

Apple's iPhone

I was interviewed by the Arizona Republic newspaper yesterday about the Apple iPhone. The hype is getting ridiculous. 30 minutes of every hour-long news show is about the iPhone. What ever happened to the important things going on in the world that some of us would like to hear about?

But to the point, the phone is probably going to be a success, given Apple's history in consumer electronics and the fact that they are getting all this free publicity. But what kind of annoys me is that everyone focuses on the wrong things. The journalist who interviewed me only wanted to talk about the cool technology and the touch screen. That is not what will make the iPhone successful or not. It will come down to whether it is a better combination of phone, music player, and web browser than other portable devices, and at a price customers can afford. Cool can make it successful in year one, but not after that!! After that it comes down to functionality and usability.


Anonymous said...

Its also interesting to note that an hour long news program is always an hour long regardless of what is happening in the world. Doesn't it make sense to say that some days there will be only 15 minutes of news while other days there might be 2 hours of news?

marc said...

Interesting point. I imagine that the consistency is due more to a need for consistent programming blocks. It messes programming enough when sports events go into overtime, to do this everyday because of news would be crazy.

But from a more fundamental perspective, I think there is probably way more news each and every day than there is time in a news show. So in theory, they should have no problem finding important events to document for a full hour, or even for a 24/7 news show.

Anonymous said...

But isn't it the touch screen that will determine if it is a better combination of the phone, music player, and web browser. The touch screen is the primary, if not only, interface to all three.

The iPhone will definitely be successful based on how cool it is, we are already seeing that. However, I think that is a short-term factor. In the long-term, I think its manufacturing quality and durability is going to play a big part. It is an expensive device to replace.

As an example, I love my MacBook Pro, but I treat it like it is fragile and am afraid to let it get banged up. Where as my IBM thinkpad has not problem being dropped down a flight of stairs. :)

I'll stop babbling after this: Since Lenovo took over, both these laptops are now being made in China, so we'll see the quality of the outcome.

marc said...

The usability and usefulness of the touchscreen will determine its success, not just the fact that it uses touch instead of keys.