The Macalope: First!


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Remember, kids, it’s not about the journey, it’s not about doing something right, it’s all about getting there first.

Writing for Bloomberg, Megan McArdle sees the harbinger of Apple doom:

“Samsung Gets to Your Wrist Before Apple” (tip o’ the antlers to Rajesh).

So did Timex, Swatch, and Mickey Mouse. What’s your point?

I’m tempted to say, “Who would want one of these?” But I gave into that temptation about the iPhone, and then the iPad, and well, it turns out that I do.

You do know that Samsung doesn’t make those, right?

Apparently, I am extremely bad at predicting what sorts of electronic devices I want, much less what the rest of the country will buy.

Well, then, your analysis should be top-notch! Proceed!

Instead I’ll point out what’s really interesting, which is that Samsung, not Apple, is getting there first.

This is the very definition of not interesting.

Apple doesn’t invent markets. It reinvents markets. How many digital music players were there before Apple shipped the iPod? Eh, who remembers? But a bunch. Microsoft OEMs were shipping tablets long before the iPad. Sure, no one was buying them, but they were shipping them. And, say, Megan, when did Samsung itself ship its first mobile phone? Gosh, that would be hard to find out, wouldn’t it?

(It was in 1988.)

Post-Steve Jobs, Apple seems to be turning into more of a normal technology company.

Again, forgive McArdle because pundits have got to get these “Apple doesn’t innovate anymore” pieces in before the company starts shipping new products. Which, if it happens this fall, would be about three and half years since the last really new product Apple shipped, so basically on the same schedule that the company had when Steve Jobs was alive.

Look, paying attention to these things is haaard.

McArdle says she doesn’t know if Apple will continue to succeed or burst into flames and burn to the ground next Tuesday.

But the Galaxy Gear’s jump on the iWatch to market can’t be a good sign.

I have not seen this watch. I know nothing about this watch. It may, in face, be a regular watch. One that you have to wind.

But it is disastrous to Apple that Samsung is shipping it before Apple maybe ships a hypothetical potential smartwatch that it may or may not be working on.


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