Have Apple gone rotten?

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If  a survey were to be taken of the whole university to find out what type of smartphone most students owned, I’d be placing my money on the winner being the iPhone. Apple have continued to develop the most desirable products in their respective fields for over ten years. Ever since the launch of the iPod in 2001, the demand for Apple’s innovative products has sky rocketed and even saw the company become the most valuable in the world during 2011. Aside from Apple’s various Marketing strategies and sales techniques, the mass appeal of Apple products is almost always accredited to their ability to create new innovative products in a way that no other company can.

To begin with in 2001, the transition of music consumption from the CD format to MP3 via the iPod and iTunes, was revolutionary. Even the likes of Kanye West attributes this revolution in the music industry to the late Steve Jobs. Then again in 2007 we saw the highly popular iPod  combined with a mobile phone to create arguably their greatest ever product, the iPhone. Another example of Apple completely revolutionising an industry as they gave life to the smartphone. Then if you thought they couldn’t do it again, the now globally used iPad dropped in 2010 making us all question the usefulness of our laptops and in turn gave birth to the tablet computer. So how  in 2013, are we in the position where Apple’s biggest innovation of the moment is a plastic iPhone that looks like it has been dipped in the paint from a toddler’s art set?

Maybe I’m being a bit harsh on Apple’s new product range: I am talking from the view point of an iPhone 3GS user who is bitter about not being given an upgrade. So lets take a look at Apple’s other latest flagship product, the iPhone 5s. The latest reincarnation of the iPhone is a good phone to use. It boasts the standard camera and processor upgrade, as well as the new fingerprint locking system which is pretty cool. This is all great, however “pretty cool” is not what I expect from Apple. When I first got my iPhone it was amazing, I wanted to try all the features and explore the manic world of apps for as long as my battery would let me. Apple should be amazing, mind blowing even, not just pretty cool. Even though the various forms of the iPhone 5 have great retina screen displays along with two top quality cameras and a slick operating system, I can’t help but thinking that there is nothing revolutionary about them.

The same goes for the iPad and iPods, these products are top of the market, yes, but they aren’t doing anything that Microsoft or Samsung aren’t. Gone are the days when Samsung took a step forward whilst Apple took a leap. Only last week did Samsung announce that they were to release the first ever curved smartphone. Whether this is a good idea or not is irrelevant, the point is, Samsung are pushing the technology forward with a view to create something revolutionary. Yet when I look at Apple’s latest releases I see a tacky looking iPhone and an operating system that looks suspiciously like that of an Android phone.

Of course Apple haven’t suddenly crumbled, but it seems clear that their ability to lead as their competitors follow is now in the past. The future still looks bright for Apple, with rumours circulating that an iWatch is the next revolutionary product that the tech giants will release. However the difference now is that Google and Samsung are both keeping pace with similar ideas. Unlike the iPod and the iPhone, Apple can no longer shock us with their revolutionary ideas, as they are not the only ones who have them. The competition has caught up and they don’t seem to be lifting their foot of the gas any time soon. So, yes, it is more than likely that Apple will create another revolutionary product that will have nerds, geeks and stressed out Christmas shoppers across the world flocking to there stores, but the difference is this time, they’re are not alone.

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