Steve’s death is of course very sad, and I think we lost a genius here. He was the driving force behind Apple since its inception, and when he was kicked out – Apple lost almost everything it had, and had to bring him back in to bring it back to its glory and further.
Now, (almost) the biggest company in the US (or is it the world?) in terms of valuation has lost its head.
The iPhone 4S announcement came probably just in time for Steve Jobs to see it, but I’m not sure he would go with it had he been able to present it himself. Way below his league.
It’s basically the same old 4G with some tweaks. The tweaks may appear major to some (better camera, 4G support, 64GB version, A5 CPU), and may appear minor to others, like me. I was expecting something big. Something that would make me gasp and run to Cupertino to camp in front of the Apple store for days to get it. Well, maybe not that much, but still… The original iPhone, with its multitouch screen and simple yet versatile interface revolutionized the world of mobile communications. The next versions were the 3G (that brought 3G to the masses), 3GS (that was not a major change, but significant in terms of capabilities – video recording capabilities, HDSPA support, on top of some hardware improvements), 4 (the “Retina” display, CDMA support, front camera). And now 4GS. Without any major changes, just some tweaks. Nothing that the competition doesn’t already have, nothing that iPhones didn’t have before.
In the mean time the competition caught up and the Android phones are certainly worth looking at. I was playing with HTC Inspire, and I don’t feel like its inferior to the 3GS I have in my pocket. I’m looking at the Samsung Galaxy S II, and it definitely looks better than iPhone 4GS, and I’m not the only one to think so (in this link the comparison is with iPhone 4, but except for the processor and the camera in which they’re now even, nothing else changed). Oh, and Samsung Galaxy S II is $229 on T-Mobile (with improved hardware, $199 on AT&T), while iPhone 4S starts with $199 for the cheapest 16GB model (Samsung comes with 16GB built in, expandable to 32GB with microSD, something Apple never had and probably never will have).
And I haven’t even talked about the Nexus Prime – 720p screen, “Ice Cream Sandwich” Android, and many more.
So bottom line is that I’m disappointed with Apple, and without Steve Jobs I’m not sure they can keep up with the expectations. The competition caught up on them already, and is moving ahead, while they’re still improving and enhancing the same old designs they announced almost 2 years ago. In the world of gadgets that’s a lifetime. My next phone will probably not be an iPhone.
The Little Advisor.