Monday, April 3, 2017 [Tweets] [Favorites]

The iPad Turnaround Is Coming

Jean-Louis Gassée (tweet):

At the time, it sounded like a stream-of-consciousness ventilation that belied a hesitant inner monologue. Seven years later, we see how prophetic it was. We all know what a PC is for, and we “get” smartphones…but we’re still debating what an iPad wants to be. Is it a PC replacement or just a media consumption device? Is it for knowledge workers, or couch surfers, or artists, or students… That we ask these questions points to an abundance of riches, but our culture needs certainty, it demands sharp taxonomies.

[…]

This leads us to an easy guess for future iPad Pros. We’re likely to see linear hardware and software improvements (keyboard, screen, stylus, more independent windows…), plus others we can’t think of immersed, as we often are, in derivative thought.

[…]

Perhaps I ought to stick to predicting the past, but there too many signs pointing to more muscular iPads taking business away from conventional PCs.

To an extent, perhaps, but I think more than linear improvements would be needed for the iPad to become what Tim Cook thinks of it as.

Chris Adamson:

So where is the software of consequence for iPad? And who, given App Store economic realities, can afford to write it?

6 Comments

Sometimes I agree with things Gassée writes, and sometimes I disagree. But this one is actually delusional. Let's summarize his reasoning:

1) iPad sales have been cratering for a while now.

2) Tim Cook is investing heavily in iPad advertising and development.

3) Thus, the iPad is about to see not only the end of cratering sales, but an actual boom in sales.

Ohhhhh-kay. (Backs away from Jean-Louis slowly.)

"Perhaps I ought to stick to predicting the past, but there too many signs pointing to more muscular iPads taking business away from conventional PCs."

What are those signs? Maybe I missed something, but the article didn't mention any signs other than Apple's strategy. There was no evidence of key tasks being easier/better on iPads, no rise in sales, no new improvements in iPads, etc.

"What are those signs? Maybe I missed something"

Indeed you did! Note #2 in my comment immediately upthread. Jean-Louis's reasoning is clear.

"Indeed you did! Note #2 in my comment immediately upthread. Jean-Louis's reasoning is clear."

But that's just Apple's strategy: they're investing in it and marketing it. They're hoping that one day, maybe, if everything goes well, iPad might take business away from conventional PCs. That's not a sign that it's happening.

"But that's just Apple's strategy: they're investing in it and marketing it. They're hoping that one day, maybe, if everything goes well, iPad might take business away from conventional PCs. That's not a sign that it's happening."

Of course. My only point to you was that Jean-Louis Gassée did indeed lay out the signs he sees. There is a logical argument presented. The only problem is that his logic is certifiably loony. If you presented that piece to a judge, you could have him committed to an asylum.

The whole piece is so damn weird. His stated justification for deifying Tim Cook as a man of infinite wisdom literally consists of: "[he] has long been known to be a thoughtful speaker." And that's his serious justification after he offers a joke one.

If Tim Cook has infinite wisdom then any Apple strategy will obviously work. The religious see signs in odd places. Jesus can appear in a tortilla.

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