Originally Posted by Dean Roddey
But that's part of the problem. How did Apple position itself for so long? They were the hip alternative. What is it that kills every hip or insider movement? It's the broad adoption of that movement. It's no longer hip, it's just status quo. I think that makes them vulnerable. Every such movement is largest just before it become passe and people move on.
That's not true. I was comparing them on business factors, and those are the same. They are going down the same road they were before. And your analysis isn't correct anyway. Before Apple tanked the first time, they were in the same situation as now. They were the darlings of the computer world and of the financial world. But they were depending on a vertically integrated strategy that required huge profits to feed a huge R&D effort. Those things are just as dangerous now as then.
Which is one of the points I was making. One of the characteristics of large, successful companies is the building of feifdoms at the top, in-fighting, people counting their stock options, vanity projects, etc... All these things happen to Apple the first time around, and likely will again.
BUT, because they are so dependent on a single product, the use of which is really more fashion driven than on fundamentals, they are even more vulnerable to a swing in the finkle finger of fashion, IMO. Since they really aren't a computer company so much anymore, they don't have that to fall back on. Or, if they did fall back on it, it would be such an implosion that they might not ever come back.
We're not really disagreeing in broad strokes here. I'd argue that my assessment that there is a difference between their situation now and pre-jobs is correct, you argue differently, but neither really matters.
Apple will sooner or later find themselves in a downward spiral unless they can keep innovating and that might be tricky.
Not only did Jobs see the need by consumer of nicely designed electronics but he also saw the massive hole that could be filled with an updated version of the Walkman.
Apple is unlikely to have another Steve Jobs in their midst but they might have a few guys who can fill his shoes collectively.
However they need to keep innovating. A lacklustre Iphone 6 will hurt them.