Interesting talk by Steve Jobs on NeXT going after the Prosumer.
It’s weird to see him talk about data, prognosis, market share and focus groups. Sure, it’s internal use only, but it’s strange to see a similar structure in a keynote build upon completely different building blocks. There’s no vision, dream or cross-section of technology and arts here. This thesis is build on hard data and market studies. But it’s still a Jobs keynote that starts with three questions and a logical flow of, in this case handdrawn, slides with ideas that build a larger concept.
We have a benefit here. Sun spends tons on marketing convincing people to get into this market. A market where both we and Sun live. But once they made their choice. Sun and NeXT are mortal enemies.
Steve Jobs (paraphrased)
Replace Sun with Apple. NeXT with Samsung and it’s not such a different scenario. Apple created a market and Samsung surfed the same wave. But what’s more interesting is how similar his ideas to sell next are to selling the iPad.
He talks about people wanting single apps that connect to a larger database on the mainframe, and that’s strikingly similar to the apps on an iPad connecting to the cloud. In his talk Jobs focuses on this single app driving the need to upgrade or move to a new platform. And when I see businesses moving to the iPad it’s for that same reason. Get data out of the office and into the hands of employees.
If Apple is looking for a larger story for the iPad, it’s this.
He also talk about to other benefits of their platform aside from custom apps: great productivity apps and interpersonal connectivity.
Here also it’s comparable to the iPad story: iOS has the biggest app catalog and the best (free) productivity apps.
What they don’t yet have is interpersonal computing. There’s no shared iCloud yet. They are getting there via Photostream, FaceTime and iMessage but these are baby steps.
Maybe it’s farfetched, but it sure is intriguing to see Jobs sell a product that’s not a Mac and still use his same bag of tricks.