Friday, January 16, 2004
choose your style: neoclassical | blue | modern | nouveau

Strategic Review

A year ago, lots of people though Apple was going nuts.

I wrote a note on Reading Apple, where I suggested that Apple's 2003 moves were fundamentally strategic and farsighted. (Back then, a lot of people thought Apple was tilting at silly windmills)

That note looks awfully good in retrospect. iLife was a Microsoft defense, and it worked: Keynote and Safari did turn out to be successes, they demonstrate that Apple could survive the loss of Office, and they apparently managed to communicate this without infuriating Microsoft. And Apple quietly reinforced the message in Panther, in where TextEdit demonstrates that Apple is prepared to field a Word-compatible word processor if it must.

But there was one thing I'd forgotten: iTunes/iPod/GarageBand. I still don't quite see where iPod is going, but I'm enjoying mine.

While the whole business press crowd was rolling their eyes and giggling, Apple's design and marketing crew got very, very good. They've got the white machines; the cool Microsoft machines are black; the hoi polloi wear beige.