Apple’s live event exploded my twitter tuesday-evening. While the livestream took off on a false note, Tim Cook was already on the verge of announcing the new iPhone 6(+) with bigger (full) high resolution screens. Finally Apple follows the Samsung’s path and brings larger screens to it’s smartphone range. Besides this new iPhone and ApplePay there was one more thing they wanted to talk about…and then Tim Cook introduced the AppleWatch. Not the first brand to introduce this tech item, but it seems that again the Apple philosophy scored….don’t be first mover, but be the game-changer!
Since the Apple band was born, we know Apple for what seem to be new products, technology, services, …. but even up until now, 2014, with the launch of their new products and services Apple (still) is not the inventor, but the innovator. Apple has it’s own strategy to understand and learn from the market, stimulate the hype (so competitors want to move in first), but then enters the market with a (slightly?) enhanced better product or (integrated) service, in combination with John Ive’s (behavioural) design.
This was the case with the first Macintosh (where it combined hard- and software in one combined device), the first iPhone and now again with their AppleWatch. Smartwatches were introduced by LG and Samsung more than a year ago, but never reached a public beyond tech-nerds (same counts for Google-glass by the way). With the introduction of AppleWatch (available in 2015) we will probably see the smartwatch pop-up more than before! Apple has the ability to be ‘that’ game-changer. Thanks to enhanced insights in user behaviour of the smartwatch, not only a ‘3d’-touch screen, but a combination of a touch screen and a sidebutton, makes the user experience better than the existing smartwatches. The browsing of the apps becomes organic again, instead of a copy-paste experience from the touch experience on your smartphone…Apple again took it up one notch! (like they always do….not the invention, but the innovation, making things better)
And off-course the design….yes the Apple watch is also big , bold and looks like it’s competitors, but the wristband isn’t! The collection of (non-tech) wristbands let’s you stick-out, like you stick out with your iPhone.
A same insight on the ApplyPay service, NFC has been around for a couple of years to enhance easy payment (and was incorporated into a lot of competitor devices), but never realy took off. Even the GoogleWallet wasn’t capable to be that gamechanger. Will Apple succeed? They, at least, gone the extra mile to make deals with major stores, brands and banks to enhance the customer (payment) experience. There is no fun when a service isn’t accepted by major stores, brands and banks…and they are heavily investing to do a similar roll out world wide next year! (Let’s hope they succeed!)
Again Apple is not the first mover, but it doesn’t follow the crowd. Why did they wait to incorporate NFC until know? Probably to even take down more payment barriers, because even when you have to take out your phone to pay. It’s one step to many…Now Apple lets you pay with the NFC-enabled Apple Watch, just by swiping your watch!
A second item that struck me, is that the i-era seems to be over….it’s not the iWatch or the iPay (witch where the expected names)! Apple apparently chooses to (re-)build its brand no around the ‘i’ –person (or the end-user) but just around the brand itself. This small change opens up new possibilities regarding brand identity and personality since the ‘i’-era is ending. With the apple-era Apple opens up a new connected vision who connects people around the brand, and not the brand around the end-user. Let’s see where they takes this