With the recent release of the iPhone 6, the questions on the future of Apple without Steve Jobs have reemerged. When Jobs founded Apple, he began a relentless pursuit to improve the consumer experience. He was relentless to the point of being unreasonable. He was unreasonable and pushed his company and staff to realize a vision.
For those who don’t remember and to the few who do, the computer in the 70s and 80s was daunting to the consumer. There was no elegant user interface. For many home and business users, a visit to tech support was a daily occurrence.
Jobs didn’t invent technology for computers, cell phones, or digital music. He invented accessible and simple Tweet This Quote
Jobs opened access to a new world by making the consumer experience central to design. From there, he opened access to unlimited entertainment and content right at our fingertips. He taught us that just because the paradigm doesn’t exist, doesn’t mean it can’t exist.
The irony is that Jobs didn’t invent technology for computers, cell phones, or digital music. He invented accessible and simple—convenient and usable innovations to products and business models to make them easy for consumers to use.
Behind the accessible and simple interfaces—the simple way to access entertainment—were solutions to complex problems. And with these solutions, Jobs unlocked trillion-dollar industries. Apple led, others followed. And Apple led by unlocking complexity with simplicity.
We need to marry big problems with entrepreneurs with the relentless pursuit to solve them Tweet This Quote
Today Apple continues to create incremental solutions to innovations from a previous time. This leaves room for a new generation of business leaders to invent accessible solutions for newer technologies. The inability to unlock sectors like solar PV, home automation, electric vehicles, and other sectors shows the limits of Apple’s current thinking. It could be a strategic mistake for Apple to not step into sectors that will represent the next great economic boom.
We need to marry big problems with entrepreneurs with the relentless pursuit to solve them with simple, accessible, and powerful answers. Answers we’d be stupid not to employ because they are the key to unlocking new markets and inverting the trajectory of global warming.
Crossing the next frontiers will have to be without Steve, but he can motivate us all. Even though he didn’t invent the computer, music player, tablet computer, or smartphone his invention of the Apple IIe, Macintosh, iPod, iPad, iPhone—Jobs taught us iCan.