In the wake of the recent Apple Event, there has been an undeniable undercurrent of discontent on social media.
People called it boring, uninspiring, and lacking big ideas. Some of that criticism may be justified, but most of it is not.
Here’s why you need to temper your expectations.
A Culture of Leaks
Gone are the days when Apple surprised us with unexpected products. Thanks to a litany of leakers, we know very well what Apple will release months before they announce it.
Mark Gurman has inside sources at Apple, as do plenty of others. Developers are combing through beta builds to uncover buried treasures, and leaks from factories in China are not uncommon at all.
So, imagine if I told you what gifts you would get for your birthday months ahead of time. Would you still be excited to open your presents if you already knew what they were?
Probably not, and the same is true for an Apple Event.
Instead of waiting to be wowed by innovative new products and software advances, most of us are checking off boxes on our Bloomberg bingo cards. That’s just how it is.
But, that doesn’t mean it’s a bad event, or that the products are bad, or that there was no innovative technology.
It just means that there are fewer surprises because of all the leaks.
Iterate Not Innovate
Every five or ten years, Apple comes out with a product that is an incredible feat of engineering. Some would say, it’s what they are famous for.
The iPod, the iPhone, and the MacBook Air are examples of products that fit that category. The new Apple Vision Pro could also be counted among those products one day.
However, what people don’t seem to realize is that it’s nearly impossible to repeat that level of creativity every year.
So what does Apple do? They iterate. Apple is the master of iteration.
Their first-generation products aren’t always very good.
For instance, the first iPhone didn’t have an App Store. The first Apple Watch was really slow. The first HomePod was kind of buggy. But, there was enough there to capture your imagination.
You could see that this was the start of something new. These products might not be great now, but it was easy to see how they could be. All they would need to get better was time. And that’s where the iteration comes in.
Apple hones its products. It doesn’t look to do something completely different every year. Instead, they look for ways to improve the products you already love. That’s their company philosophy, and it’s one of the reasons they are one of the richest companies in the world.
So, if you truly expect Apple to reinvent the wheel every time they hold a hardware event, your expectations are way off base.
They’re good, but they’re not that good.
The Apple Infomercial
There’s no two ways about it. An Apple Event is an ad.
It’s a 60–90 minute commercial, not too dissimilar to the Saturday afternoon infomercials that many of us grew up with.
The purpose of an Apple Event is not to entertain you. The purpose of an Apple Event is to sell you more stuff. Whether you need it or not, Apple’s crack marketing team will do whatever they can to make you buy into their carefully crafted ecosystem.
And they’re not the only ones. Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon, Samsung, and countless others have a very similar event with a very similar goal. That means, as a consumer, we have never had more options.
If you don’t like what Apple is selling, don’t buy it. Buy something else. Complaining won’t get you anywhere, and even if it does, it will be at least another year before Apple addresses those complaints.
I’m sorry it wasn’t what you hoped for, but an Apple event is not the next viral TV sensation. It’s a sales pitch. If you were expecting anything more, it’s time to take off those rose-tinted glasses.
When it comes to Apple, I think it’s important to approach each event with an open mind.
While surprises may be rare, there’s a good reason why Apple makes a lot of money. They consistently make things that people want to buy.
Not every Apple event will resonate with you, but that’s okay, and Apple knows that, too. They also know the next one is just a few months away…