In 2010 in a seminar room of a leading international business school, top executives from around the world had collected together to attend a programme on “Orchestrating a Winning Performance”. The subject of the discussion in one of the sessions veered on what would be the future strategy of Apple. The iPad had been successfully launched and Steve Jobs was receiving accolades at that time.
One projection that emerged was that Apple would concentrate on devices with radical design conversion on innovative ideas being its focal point. It was clear that Apple’s big bang product prototyping and commercial launch would be its hall mark rather than the incremental improvement product development strategy.
The hot topic of debate that emerged was on the type and form of television substitutes that would be conceived by Apple. The conversation ranged from whether Apple would concentrate on building devices only which will provide a “unique customer experience” or whether it would look into content management too.
We have been strong protagonists of the thought that without its own captive content generation and management off-shoot, Apple TV would never take off, the way Steve would have visualised. One votary had even proposed that Apple would have its own satellite aided transmissions systems through which it will beam its own content.
As we now know, discussions with the content owners have been in progress ever since and talks with Twenty First Century Fox and CBS is not fructifying. The Apple TV has already been launched but it has not as awe inspiring as the iPod or the iPad and it will continue to be short of Steve’s vision as long as a revolutionary approach is not adopted by Apple on the content management part of the game.
We would like to be proved wrong and if there is someone who has a different view point, it would be good to hear from them.