Posts Tagged iPhone

Saturday Evening Thoughts on iPods and Technological Innovation

The mediagasm over the release of iPad2 has got me thinking about technology and innovation.

I was looking at my first iPod the other night – I have the white one with the four buttons and the tiny bluish screen; the dial shaped trackpad.  These days, the battery lasts about 30 minutes.  Its 20 gig storage seemed vast at the time.  It was a revelation about technology; next to it my then brand new state of the art cell phone was clunky.  I can still feel the thrill of opening that box for the first time and looking at this amazing piece of engineering.  Suddenly, music was easy – no CDs, few limits; the entire collection in my hand.

Apple’s real innovation, the turning point, was the iPod.  The iPod demonstrated that technology could be personalized, portable, easy to use and extremely profitable.  It transformed the computer industry, the music industry, and our personal lives.  I believe the iPod was more important than cell phones in terms of our relationship with our technology because the iPod transformed how we relate to technology while cell phones were and continue to be extensions of well established technology – powerful, yes, but not transformative.

Think about the smartphone – whether a Blackberry, an iPhone, an Android device or what – and you see the iPod – technology that is powerful but easy to use in the palm of your hand.  As computing power requires smaller and smaller devices, the devices can do more and more efficiently without growing in size. Read the rest of this entry »

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