It's hard to believe this stuff is still happening, but we have a new entry into the Apple Death Knell Counter—Death Knell #65. It comes to us courtesy of one John Benjamin, who wrote a piece called "Apple Rotting from the Inside" for The Guardian Liberty Voice (not affiliated with London's The Guardian newspaper).
Mr. Benjamin argues—and I use the word loosely—that Apple's days of innovation are behind it. Using vague references to the death of Steve Jobs, something about iTunes not having evolved, and a completely unsupported notion that the iPhone 6 is going to disappoint, he comes to what he seems to think is the obvious conclusion proposed in his title.
"iTunes has not evolved much and despite new and shiny releases, Apple has not innovated their business to much extent," he wrote. "Without Steve Jobs at the helm, Apple’s creativity has stagnated quickly, and seems to be rotting from the inside."
Does he offer evidence? No.
Moving on, he noted that, "Since 2011, the year Jobs passed away, Apple seems to have lost their vision. Despite the fact that consumers replace almost indistinguishable devices at a premium year after year, the frustration of knowing how similar they all are is growing. With the iPhone 6 continually being hyped and hinted at, chances are the grand reveal will leave a lot to be desired."
The writer doth project too much, methinks.
Seriously. What does he base this opinion on? is it the way iPhone sales have climbed year after year? Is is the many projections that a large screen iPhone 6 will kick demand even higher? I've read precisely one opinion—and again, I use the term loosely in this application—suggesting anything other than the iPhone 6 is going to be the bee's knees.
Hint: That one opinion was this one from M. Benjamin.
I've written before on the absurdity of judging Apple's ability to innovate without Steve Jobs so soon after after his death. It's ridiculous. We're a little more than two and a half years past that sad date. People who think that the lack of a disruptive product in that time frame themselves lack critical thinking skills.
What's even better is that Mr. Benjamin offers not even one mention of Apple's much-rumored iWatch, a device that seems likely to be released this very year. If you're going to reach absurd conclusions about Apple not innovating, you should at least make a token effort to dismiss the innovative product that everyone and their brother thinks is coming.
My favorite quote from the piece is this:
When the iPhone 5c and 5s came out in 2013, it was described by Derek Ross of Phandroid as: “A phone that hasn’t changed that much from its predecessor, but includes just the right amount of marketing fluff to make it sound amazing.”
Oh, really? So someone writing for Phandroid panned what would become the biggest selling iPhone ever? Well, jeepers, I guess that just settles it, then. Apple is doomed.
More: "Monetarily Apple is doing very well, but consumer confidence, and with it stocks value, can be lost overnight. There are no guarantees in business, and a company’s ability to align itself with trends, or create them, can be vital for long-term success."
To which I say, "And?"
There's just nothing in that comment that forwards anything in this piece. I mean, it's all true. Stocks can decline overnight. Yes, though seldom without a catalyst. No guarantees in life—useless bromide, check. A company's ability to innovate and disrupt has an effect on its business—obvious statement is obvious. Right, got it.
But it's meaningless.
Let's not dwell on any of this, however, because it's time to get right to the conclusion:
With the years of innovation behind it, and technology changing and improving faster than ever, Apples lack of creative growth might be an indication of the people who are now running it. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is find a new coach, especially when the one who took you to the finals is a relative. Current market shares and sales trends would indicate that all is fine, but actual product lack of growth and development might hint that the Apple is rotting from the inside.
Here we have an unsupported statement used to reach a spurious conclusion followed by a nebulous reference to a change in leadership that might be a claim that Apple needs such a change. All of which takes us to the grand finale, "that the Apple is rotting from the inside."
Congratulations, John Benjamin. You are now immortalized in the Apple Death Knell Counter.