For the last decade or so Apple has been a leading innovator in technology and entertainment. The company completed changed how we interact with music with the ipod and iTunes. The company reinvented the cell phone experience with the iPhone, and finally Apple brought tablet computing to the masses with the iPad. They have been stumbling lately though. The watch device they introduced last year has only been adopted by true Apple fanatics. So fans were expecting a lot with the updates to the AppleTV and the iPadPro. Now that the spectacle from the Apple presentation has died down we can take a minute to really consider what the company shared with us.
The biggest advancement the iPadPro has for us is size. The new device features a 12.9 inch Retina display. Sure, for the right person this new giant screen is very welcome. This device really is for pro users, mostly creatives. There will be some consumers that want the large for factor too. The focus of the Apple presentation of this new device centered on the ability to draw on the device with a new stylus. Another primary advancement is the ability to do picture in picture or split screen work on the device. While the interface looks great and the tools Apple has put in place will surely work well everything they have announced in regard to the iPad Pro is already readily available on other devices for less money (iPadPro starts at $699). The split screen interface available on the Galaxy Note and Samsung tablets works very well and has been around for years as has their stylus.
The AppleTV update has been touted by Apple as a real game changer when it comes to how we interact with our visual media. There’s no reason not to believe the company; they do have a solid track record. The result though is like the iPadPro, ME TOO! The big advancement here is universal search. You can enter a title by voice or remote control and the device will search a variety of streaming services including iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, and Vudu to find the title and leave it to you to choose how you’d like to watch the movie or TV show. The new Apple TV also features genre searches and it guesses what you will like based on your favorite titles and things you’ve recently watched. Does any of this sound familiar? Universal search is something that has been available for sometime. Currently it works really great on Microsoft’s XBOX One. In the end the “advancements” equal adding features that are already on the market with a clean Apple Graphical User Interface. Apple integrated Siri into the device, well Microsoft has Cortana already and you can interact with the Fire TV by voice too. Basically, there’s nothing new here. Oh and the new Fire TV will be 4k ready while the AppleTV still tops out at 1080p.
What has happened over at Apple? Are they done innovating? Every time there’s a new Apple event I get excited for new advancements and innovations but over the last few years the company really hasn’t brought us anything new and exciting. They seem to be resting on their laurels a little and that’s a dangerous place to be. The one real change we’ve seen over the last few years is that they don’t care about the pro’s anymore. The iPadPro does at least offer a glimmer of hope that they are starting to take the considerations of professional creatives seriously again.