It is a Big iPhone
Looks nice, but more evolutionary than revolutionary. Price better than expected, but still won’t be racing out to buy one. Expectations were impossible to meet, but Apple gets a lot of blame for setting them so high.
Flash in the Pan?
I thought after inadvertently showing that Flash didn’t work on the Time web site (above), they were setting up a reconciliation with Adobe. Guess not. Was this an intentional nose-thumbing at Adobe or is Jobs less scripted in demos than we all assume?
The Dumb Pipe
Even though it was greeted with derision, Apple’s deal with AT&T for 3G data service is significant. No doubt part of a broader negotiation between the two companies, the iPad data plans set a bar for other operators to meet or beat on price, quota and lack of contractual commitment. AT&T, along with other operators around the world, end up more removed from the customer and one step closer to being not just a dumb pipe, but an invisible dumb pipe. It will be interesting to see the terms and conditions and to what degree AT&T gets brand awareness.
Rumors of Kindle’s Death Greatly Exaggerated
Apple seemed a little faint-hearted in their commitment to iBook – they threw it out there but seem ready to do an AppleTV-style “its just a hobby” repudiation if it doesn’t pan out. Kindle is first and foremost a bookstore and available across an ever increasing number of devices, including the iPad from the day it ships. Publishers used Apple to get Amazon to drop their cut to 30% but Amazon still has way more leverage over publishers than Apple does (assuming publishers still care about selling those ink on paper books). And Apple seems to have conceded consistent pricing, which of course was fundamental to iTunes’ success. The publishers will get greedy and undermine the platform.
And I wouldn’t write off Kindle as a device. It has a price advantage, the screen is easier on the eyes and it has a huge advantage in battery life – I can fly to Asia and back for a week on a single charge. And I’ll bet we get a new one for the holidays this year.
Much false hope has been raised on this front – newspapers and magazines, you still have your work cut out for you. There is also some weirdness in Apple’s iBook store with what looks like a New York Times icon built in (below). Strange choice as it makes enemies and given the New York Times’ business savvy (or lack thereof), their deep embrace is a bearish indicator for the device.
Apple’s Cloud Strategy Still Missing in Action
USB sync? Color me underwhelmed but am sure they are working furiously on this.
What else did I miss?