Guy Kawasaki on the state of innovation at Apple

on Mar26
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“We have our iPhones and iPads, and we know they will get better and better. But that’s not the test for Apple. People want Apple to create new categories, not just better and better versions of what they already have.”

Indeed, some users were not overly impressed with the second generation airpods, and though CNBC called the iPad Mini “compact and incredibly powerful,” The Verge called it “a little bit of an Apple parts-bin remix, but the parts are all good.”

The issue is, “Apple has established such high expectations that few other companies can keep up with it — and it’s even difficult for Apple to top itself. This is a high-quality, though extremely difficult, problem,” says Kawasaki, who is now an investor, speaker and author of “Wise Guy: Lessons from a Life.”

But with three new subscription services announced on Monday — a TV service, a gaming bundle and an all-you-can-read magazine subscription — as well as an Apple-branded credit launched in partnership with Goldman Sachs, Kawasaki says it raises a new question: “Is Apple simply the best device company or the best device and services company? …[I]t’s trying to be the latter,” Kawasaki tells CNBC Make It.

Wall Street investors were largely unimpressed with the services and credit card. But Kawasaki sees things a little differently.

“Will it succeed? It would be foolish to bet against Apple based on my experience,” Kawasaki says. “Skepticism that greeted Macintosh, iPod, iPhone, iPad, and the retail stores. In each case, the pundits predicted Apple would fail. In each case, the pundits were wrong.”

Back when Apple launched retail stores in 2001, Kawasaki says everyone thought they knew what worked in retail, and “Apple defied them all. Now, many people probably assume that everyone ‘knows’ how to do services,” Kawasaki tells CNBC Make It. “If nothing else, Apple will once again force everyone to improve their game, so what’s not to like?”

Apple did not immediately respond to CNBC Make It’s request for comment.

See also:

Former Apple CEO John Sculley: What I learned from Steve Jobs

Here’s what happened when Steve Jobs called to buy this founder’s start-up

4 keys to launching a successful business, according to this entrepreneur who sold Siri to Steve Jobs

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