2002: Is it just me, or is Apple making waves with its latest round of products?
It seems every time I turn to Wired there’s an Apple story somewhere on the main page.
Also, more and more regular magazines appear to be featuring Apple products and (gasp) singing their praises. Skip through MacSurfer any day of the week since Macworld Expo and you’ll see articles from Time, Fortune, Business 2.0, Business Week, and a slew of other publications.
All this bodes well for Apple. They’re making money, their products are widely admired, and they’re finally gaining some much-deserved respect.
So what happened? Why all the warm fuzzies from the press?
It might just be a case of excellent timing. The economy isn’t doing so great, and the computer giants seem to be running aground. Gateway is a good example of this. Even giants like Compaq and HP are in the news – not because of their products, but because of their merger troubles and board vs. family squabbles.
In the midst of it all, Apple is swimming against the tide and doing quite well, thank you very much.
At the height of the dot-com boom, everyone was a winner, so it was hard for Apple to stand out from the crowd. Now everyone is scrambling to meet forecasts, and Apple is still making great products and a profit. Today that doesn’t seem so easy, and the press is taking notice.
If Apple can keep its winning streak alive, the company will be in a good position to thrive when the economy turns the corner. That seems to be the unwritten consensus.
The iMac also seems to be garnering a fair share of praise from an industry that is usually lukewarm (at best) to Apple product offerings. While the original iMac was met with derision for its bubble shape and its color, the new iMac G4 has industry pundits more or less drooling. While the base is certainly nice to look at, the swivel monitor is really turning heads.
The interest in Apple that the new iMac is generating is very interesting because it’s encouraging people to actually try a Mac. And once they boot it up and give it a spin, the consensus is usually good.
Take, for example, the one month with Apple articles by David Coursey of ZDNet. Granted, Coursey is a Mac sympathizer, but his experience might open the door to other Mac users. Columnists do wield some influence, and Coursey’s articles may make the decision to switch to Mac easier for some people.
The poor economy, Apple taking risks, and good press may be the first signs that Apple will once again gain the respectability it deserves.