It seems almost clear to me that Apple is betting on iOS and it future. Almost exclusively on iOS, I would say. And at the same time the old Apple "core business" is being left behind. Slowly.
Just look at the recent updates. iPhone OS 3.1.3 for iPhones and iPos Touch's. Then iPad and the consequent iPhone OS 3.2. Then the new iPhone 4 and the developers' beta preview of the new iOS 4. Then again a recent fix with iOS 4.0.1 and a preview of the next iOS 4.1. The mobile market seems to be a very profitable one. To the extent that Apple is betting everything on iOS and very little on Mac OS & Co. Let's see why.
We can recognise this to be true if we carefully look at the Apple Store. All the recent updates are about:
- MacBook Pro
- Mac Mini
- Mac Pro
- Apple Cinema Display
All the updates mainly interested internal hardware upgrade, with no significant updates to the product as a whole. Apple has always been late, speaking about the internal hardware of their products. Just think about Sony. They sell VAIO's (I once owned one, will never go back to it) which cost almost half the cost of a MacBook and have almost twice-powerful hardware (speaking about internal CPU, GPU, RAM memory and HD bundles).
They are trying to get back on track. But even with the latest updates, Apple has just put a little redesign to the internal hardware configuration. Some new Core i3, i5 and i7 processors appear (about 8 months later than the competitors). Some new nVidia graphics card are replacing the older ones, but these models too are already old. A discrete nVidia 330M for a top line product as the MacBook Pro seems ridiculous to me. Yes, they made really big improvements to the MBP screen, introducing a new Hi-Res display for the 15" model. A great move, I admit.
But the "packaging" is always the same, and the price has unexpectedly risen. Only the Mac Mini has gone through a complete redesign, to couple its design to that of the Apple TV. I prefer not to talk about it, since it is one of my greatest dreams, but since I'm in Italy I would pay 799 EUR for it (~ 1.049 USD) instead of 699 USD. Unbelievable.
The packaging is always the same, I just said. The MacBook Pro's have not changed since the last year. The iMac has not changed since the last two years. Even the Mac Pro will not change. These products' design could surely be improved, but Mother Apple is focusing on something completely different.
In this new touch-based world, they release the new Magic Trackpad. It's cool. But useless, in my opinion: why would I use a trackpad when I'm using an iMac? That said, it surely will sell a lot.
And in this Apple-centric market, they release the new Battery Charger. Apple can sell you everything you need to play internet, music, videos and games. Everything.
They're pushing through these new routes. They're pushing through frequent iOS updates. Frequent mobile devices updates. Frequent complementary mobile devices introductions. But they are loosing grip on the whole Mac OS world.
I hope they do not abandon Mac OS in the middle of a road.
I still hope to withstand the miracle of a Mac OS XI.
I hope they will not convince me to do everything I am used to through an iPad.
At least, as long as they do not give me one for free.