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The Sparkless Mac Pro Intro and Other Interesting Moments

1. Cover - Apple special event Oct 2013
This year's fall event for the iPad has come and gone and it was interesting no matter how you sliced it. There was a little of everything for everyone in the community from MacBook Pro upgrades to free upgraded software to new iPads through to the introduction of the all-new Mac Pro. You could tell there was a lot of depth behind some of Apple's upgrades, though I must confess that I thought Apple fumbled on the Mac Pro's introduction. I also think that Apple's focus on thin being a big innovation is getting a little old and tired. I'm sure there's a lot of engineering that goes into making a product thin, no doubt. Yet it sure would be nice if Apple would deliver a little more zing. I mean, why didn't the iPad get the new Touch ID this year? That should have been a natural but instead we got more thin air in the form of the iPad Air. Yet all in all, Apple delivered a solid round of product refreshes and we once again applaud the Crazy Ones in Cupertino for their hard work.


Phil Schiller on the Mac Pro

 

 

 

After four long months of pumping the all-new Mac Pro promotional video in theaters all summer and building it up for a grand entrance at Apple's October fall event, it all fell flat rather quickly. There was no drama like the Mac Pro rising from within a pedestal with the spotlights focused on the beautiful design. There was no crazy theme song and the presentation was void of style.

 

Instead of a little showmanship to bring this incredible design to market, we got Phil Schiller putting on his used car salesman cap and ran through slide after slide of specifications as noted below.

 

2a. Mac Pro specs 1

3b.

4.

5.

6

7

8

9 Dean Devlin on Mac Pro

10 Stuart Price Music Producer Lady Gaga

After such a great buildup for the Mac Pro, I was expecting at the very least to see a new Cinema Display in the same finish as the new Mac Pro mini tower and one that was a 4K display. Doesn't the Mac Pro support new 4K displays? Yes of course – but not one from Apple. Ouch.

 

I was even hoping that Apple would apply a little shock and awe to give us a "Wow" moment by introducing a new wireless charging system or something to complete a package of innovation that would have been the buzz of the day having a ripple effect for weeks in the press.

 

But no, we got stats from Schiller the salesman instead. All that hype, all that build-up, with a crescendo … consisting of spec slides. They were nice specs, but specs nonetheless. There wasn't even a demo of the Mac Pro in Action by either Stuart Price or Dean Devlin who were highlighted in Phil's slide show to charge us up. Nope, we just go more slides.

 

I realize that Steve Jobs is gone and that "new Apple" wants to carve out their own way of doing things. But if this is new Apple, then it's dangerously boring. They had such a great build-up and it fell off a cliff when it was time to deliver. It was a blown opportunity plain and simple with a half-baked product.

 

While I loved seeing the video of the manufacturing side of things, it just wasn't the crescendo that I or others were hoping for. Yet maybe, just maybe, Apple will surprise us at the official launch in December with "One More Thing." Time will tell.

 

Yet showmanship aside, it eventually all boils down to what's under the hood of this new beast and the all-new Mac Pro is a hot new powerhouse within the sexiest tower casing that you can find on the market today. The slides show you the Mac Pro's new brain and you can get all of the configurations and pricing for it here.

 

11. Mac Pro built in the USA

The all-new Mac Pro that's made in the USA goes on sale this December.

 

12. Mac Pro

 

 Tim Cook on the App Store

 

Apple's CEO Tim Cook loves his stats and this event was no different. Cook stated that "The App Store continues to grow in size and scope. We now have over a million apps at the Apps Store and our users have downloaded an astonishing 60 billion times (cumulative downloads).

 

And the App Store continues to be the best place for developers to be rewarded for their creativity. Developers have now earned over 13 billion dollars. It's hard to imagine your life without these phenomenal apps. It's been an enormous sea change. "

 

Tim Cook on the Competition

 

"Our competition is different: They're confused. They chased after netbooks. Now they're trying to make PCs into tablets and tablets into PCs. Who knows what they will do next?

 

  13. Cook - confused  competition

Well, I can't answer that question, but what I can tell you is that we have a very clear direction and a very ambitious goal. We still believe deeply in this category and we're not slowing down on our innovation."

 

Tim Cook on Apple's Vision  

 

Apple described the iPad when it first debuted as "our most advanced technology in a magical and revolutionary device." Tim Cook reminded us that many didn't see it that way back when it first debuted. "Some didn't see the need for it. Still others didn't think it could compete with a netbook." Cook chided: "who remembers netbooks?"

 

Still others doubted it would have any impact on the industry at all by saying "Anyone who thinks it's a game changer is a tool" (Laughter erupted at the slide).

 

  14A  Tim cook humor

Cook continued with "but we believed in our vision, and the iPad has gone on to become one of the most successful products in Apple's history; and one of the most successful in the industry."

 

  15. tim cook cumulative iPad sales

Last month Apple hit the 170 million mark for iPads sold to date. "This is an incredible number and I can't think of another product that's come so far so fast," Cook added.  

 

16 - a tim cook 170 million iPads sold

Then Cook stated that "Now everybody seems to be making a tablet, even some of the doubters are now making them. But regardless of what you might hear or read about how many are bought or sold or activated, iPad is used more than any of the rest. And not just a little more, a lot more.  iPad is used more than four times more than all of those other tablets put together.

 

17. Tim Cook 81% iPad usage

And this is what's important to us. Because when you make a great product with a great experience, this is how you know it (pointing to the slide noted above) – People use it." The stat that Tim Cook presented as later confirmed by Chitika.

 

Celebrating Apple's Customers Creativity and Genius using their iPads

 

Then Tim Cook did something new during his presentation. While talking about the iPad he stated that "We designed the iPad to be the best tool for the things you do most often.  But honestly, we could have never imagined all of the ways that our customers would be using them. To celebrate our customer's creativity and genius of using their iPads, we've prepared a short video." Below are just a few photos of that video segment that is part of Apple's Keynote.

 

18A working on windmills

19 skater 1

20. speed skater 2

21. sky glider

22 surgery 1

23. surgery 2

24 restaurant 1

25 restaurant photo 2

26.  fire truck 1

27. fire truck 2

28 boat merchant 1

29 boat merchant 2

30 sitting on side of cliff # 1

31. hanging on side of cliff

A New Apple Hook: Free Software

 

While Apple's product event in San Francisco will be better known for the introduction of new iPads, MacBooks, and Mac Pros, what may be more interesting over time is how Apple has decided to give away key software for free. With the purchase of any new major hardware like a Mac or iPhone, consumers will get iWork, iLife and OS X Mavericks free. It's a way to keep Apple customers always up to date with the latest and greatest software across all Apple products. Not that this move will cripple Microsoft's Office overnight. But it's the beginning of a trend that might have teeth over time.

 

At the end of the day, Apple's new product upgrades are putting smiles on faces around the world and that's what it's all about at Apple; Creating products that connect to consumers like no others.

 

32. iPhone dad and son

 

33. Apple fan in Shanghai Apple Store, China

 

PA - Bar - NewsAbout Comments: Patently Apple reserves the right to post, dismiss or edit comments.

 

Apple introduces Next Generation Retina Resolution for iPad mini

 


Comments

applefanboy

Thanks.
I couldn't see what it was...
then I realised it was a zoomed out view of the picture above.
my bad.

Mel lowe

....Maybe they wanted to give it a bang intro... Maybe something last minute went wrong and they had to resort to plan B?

Jack Purcher

Phil showed some fire at WWDC when talking about the Mac Pro. He cranked up the music for the Mac Pro ad. There was a pulse. At introduction time this week when there should have been double the blast of energy for the Mac Pro, Phil showed us slides and more slides like a professor. I like Phil, but he didn't follow through with his WWDC sneak peek energy. And why didn't we see an Optional Apple 4K Cinema Display? All that power, all that graphics power, would have been cool to view on a 4K display in a demo. C'est la vie.

Yay

Yes, the Mac Pro certainly deserved much more "bang" than it got. But I think this is just the reality of things these days. Phil Schiller or Tim Cook are not Steve Jobs. Jobs was an absolutely brilliant showman. They aren't. You know if Jobs introduced the Mac Pro it would have had much more bang. I don't fault Phil, its kinda hard to be even a fraction of the showman Jobs was.

And I'm assuming Touch ID is not on the iPads due to supply. The 5S is already is very tight supply constraints, credited to tight supplies of Touch ID. So its natural that the 5S would be given priority over new iPads. Plus, its the hallmark feature of the 5S, like Siri was for the 4S. The iPads didn't get Siri until the next year after the 4S, as I suspect will be the case for Touch ID as well.

Jack Purcher

Thanks for your commentary "hm" that was well presented. I agree wholeheartedly that Apple is doing very good. Though for such a great product like Mac Pro, there should have been more of a bang made.

Cheers

Jack Purcher

Really, I have to explain that? It's simple: Someone reading an iPad on the side of an insanely gigantic mountain in a hanging tent is one scary place to be to me. Congrats to those who can pull that off. So I was applauding people who could do that while adding a little humor. You should try it sometime "Applefanboy" - humor that is. (ha!)

Hm

Tim seemed a little unfocused to begin with. He fumbled a lot of words… but Craig Federighi helped to save the day. But their events now do seem to be lacking in the kind of energy and passion that only Steve seemed able to conjure.

Pros want to know about tech specs (I certainly did), hence why Phil banged on about them, but it could certainly have been done in a more slick manner. Showing more of what you can actually do with this power would have been better. As to an Apple 4k display - I have a theory they left this out because they don't want to tip anyone off to what the Apple TV will look like, as they will doubtless be very similar (if not one and the same product).

I guess the big surprise was making so much software free - a great move that will usher many into upgrading. I got Mavericks this morning, and so far it seems rock solid.

My highlight though, was the video showing how people are actually using the iPad in so many different ways. That could BE the advert for iPad, it was so good.

So no big surprises, but no clangers either. Let's not forget, this is something of a transition year for Apple, as they fire on all cylinders to get all of their primary devices 64 bit capable and retina ready, plus bring the look and feel of iOS and OS X closer. Taken in this context, they have achieved an incredible amount in a year (while also developing several secret projects at the same time). They're doing pretty good in my book!


applefanboy

best online written report of the event yet.

"yikes! are you kidding me!" Exactly what is that??

Rogifan

There were plenty of years under Steve where Apple products were just incremental updates but Steve was such a great salesman he could make anything seem magical and revolutionary. That's Apple's problem today - they don't have a salesman. Phil Schller was great as sort or the goofball sidekick in product demos but just rattling off a bunch of specs is rather boring. And Tim Cook as well is incredibly boring. I actually think Craig Federighi is the best on stage presenter now and maybe Apple should give him the most stage time.

Also it seemed to me Apple had a lot to cover and Cook did not want the event to drag on. Perhaps the MacBook Pro could have just been updated via press release like they did with the iMac. Or included in a separate event for the Mac Pro where they could have spent more time showing it off and the updates to their pro software suite. Jam packing a bunch of stuff in an hour in a half is no good. And since Apple is pretty clear on not buying into to this laptop/tablet convergence strategy there's no reason Macs and iPads need to be shown off at the same event. Have separate events for each.

adam t

I have to agree, this event wasn't as slick as others. I feel Tim Cook should be doing more of the sales pitch, instead of stats and ringmaster. The Black Knight moment was funny and took focus away for a while too

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