ANALYSIS: Apple failed to live up to the hype, and the rumour mill should take some blame

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An iPhone announcement, the rumour mill going overdrive and blanket media coverage with eager eyed fans waiting to hear those words “One More Thing”. What could possibly go wrong for Apple? Everything. Apple’s expectations failed to live up to the hype.

The rumour mill should take some of the blame for Apple’s lackluster performance. The confusion over what was going to be announced (even before the announcement) caused everyone, including fans and shareholders, to be unimpressed.

We should have know better…

An iPhone 4S? iPhone 5? What about both? Possibly even three? Was it going to have 4G? The rumours essentially spiralled out of control and we wanted so badly for an iPhone 4S and an iPhone 5 to be announced on the October press event. Maybe in a perfect utopia.

We should have known better. Apple has never announced two iPhones at the same time, in the same press event. The iPhone model is to upgrade the parts sequentially. The iPhone had EDGE before the iPhone 3G gave it, as the name suggested, 3G connectivity. The iPhone 3GS better hardware performance, while the iPhone 4 added a better camera, A4 processor and a retina screen. It is understandable then that only one would be announced.

Everyone wanted iPhone 5, but knowing now, the iPhone 4S was going to be released. Why? As stated above, the parts are upgraded sequentially and always slowly. The iPhone 5 supposed specifications based on the rumours seemed to be a big leap. Plus, 4G? Many markets do not have 4G. Verizon has it, but doesn’t mean that Apple has to do it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it was wrong of us to speculate. It’s our job. And plus, I’m not a die-hard Mac fanboy. If I was, I would be condemning Apple for everything.

Having a press release for a minor upgrade to the iPod line would suffice, not upfront placement in a keynote.

It was a disaster… because there was no charisma

But let’s focus on the announcement itself. It was a disaster. It wasn’t because of the lack of Steve Jobs, it was because there was no charisma. Yes, Steve Jobs had charisma. But based on his earlier keynotes, Phil Schiller has that too and he should have hosted the event. However, I think he was pushed to the sidelines to allow Tim Cook, the new CEO, to do the keynote. However, Cook’s part was purely spent on facts, figures and useless stuff for 40 minutes. He could rival Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg for boring presentations.

A Stevenote goes into facts, but does weave its relevance to the product announcement. An iPhone announcement does not need information about the iPad, or the iPod touch – or if it had to do something with the iOS platform, mentioned it then and briefly. The presentation was more about securing shareholder’s confidence in Apple when its pioneering leader Jobs resigned as CEO. But that failed, because it showed what a Cooknote is. And it ain’t pretty.

… they should have broken the mould

Because of the timeframe of changing everything from Jobs to Cook, that could explain why they had to duplicate. They should have pass the duties to Schiller – he’s the Steve Ballmer of Apple, except for the fact that he’s likeable and doesn’t make you cringe when he says the word “developers”. (That said, don’t say “That’s just killer”. That was rivalling “developers”)

It’s the first one of many Cooknotes, and I get a feeling that they will continue to use the Stevenote template. Anyone can be a good speaker for presentations, but it’s about how you do it. Rather than just copy, they should have broken the mould so Cook felt more comfortable and not just regurgitating information about Apple to appease shareholders concerns about Jobs’ departure.

May I suggest having Nyan-cat playing in the background?

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